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Al Gore Wins in 2000; What Exactly Does U.S. Foreign Policy Look Like From 2001 to the Present-Day?


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#1
Futurist

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Let's have Al Gore officially win in 2000 by winning Florida by several hundred or several thousand votes as a result of George W. Bush saying a(n additional) stupid remark shortly before the 2000 election.
 
In this scenario, what exactly does U.S. foreign policy look like from 2001 to the present-day?
 
As for my own thoughts on this, here you go:
 
Al Gore (U.S. President between 2001 and 2009):
 
-9/11 still occurs due to the fact that, as far as I know, at least some of the issues (such as various U.S. intelligence agencies failing to sufficiently work with each other) which failed to prevent 9/11 would have still existed in this scenario.
 
-After 9/11, Gore would have still invaded Afghanistan due to the Taliban refusing to accept all of the conditions in his post-9/11 ultimatum to them. After helping the Northern Alliance overthrow the Taliban, the U.S. would have successfully killed Osama Bin Laden. However, after Bin Laden's death, Al-Qaeda would still continue to exist and to function with new leadership (but would gradually become weakened over time). Hamid Karzai is still installed as the new President of Afghanistan in this scenario, and while there is much more of a U.S. and Western focus on Afghanistan in this scenario, a lot of the issues which affected the Western war effort in Afghanistan in real life would have still been present in this scenario. Thus, I suspect that the U.S. will eventually lose its patience in Afghanistan in this scenario (and earlier than in real life) and thus eventually push for the creation of a Northern Alliance-"reformed" Taliban unity government in Afghanistan with a small long-lasting Western troop presence in Afghanistan in order to help keep the peace there. Whether the U.S. and the West (as in, the other NATO countries) will succeed in regards to doing this is anybody's guess.
 
-Gore does *not* invade Iraq due to the fact that he does *not* have a personal vendetta against Saddam Hussein like Bush Jr. did. Rather, Gore exploits the aftermath of 9/11 to fully restore the sanctions regime on Iraq and to keep a close eye on Saddam Hussein.
 
-Gore successfully pursues a rapprochement with Iran due to their mutual hostility to the Taliban, al-Qaeda, and Saddam Hussein. Gore views a U.S. rapprochement with Iran as a useful tool to help stabilize Afghanistan and to put additional pressure on Saddam Hussein.
 
-Without an Iraq War, Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi takes longer to pursue a rapprochement with the West. However, 9/11 helps gradually push Gaddafi and the West closer together, which in turn results in Gaddafi fully renouncing terrorism and giving up all of his WMDs and his nuclear weapons program sometime in Gore's second term (2005-2009).
 
-There are more U.S.-Israel tensions in the early 2000s than there was in real life due to the fact that Gore, unlike Bush, doesn't fully support *all* of the anti-terrorism actions which Israel conducts during the Second Intifada. After Arafat's death and the second of the Second Intifada, however, U.S. and Israeli relations become warmer and Gore unsuccessfully makes a push for Israeli-Palestinian peace which fails due to Ehud Olmert's 2008 or 2009 resignation as a result of corruption allegations against him.
 
-Gore *might* militarily intervene in order to stop the genocide in Darfur, perhaps with the help of NATO; however, I am certainly *not* completely sure about this.
 
-North Korea probably does *not* build a nuclear weapon as early as it did in real life due to the fact that Gore, unlike Bush, would probably *not* be unequivocally hostile to North Korea.
 
-Without the Iraq War, U.S. relations with Europe would be better and warmer than they were under the Bush Administration in real life.
 
Some Republican (maybe someone such as George Allen; U.S. President between 2009 and 2017):
 
-Once the Arab Spring occurs, the U.S. and NATO still overthrow Muammar Gaddafi's regime in Libya. Likewise, NATO (including the U.S.) and Iran launch a joint large-scale military operation/campaign to overthrow Saddam Hussein during the Arab Spring due to the fact that the Arab Spring provides a good opportunity to do this. Afterwards, Iraq either gets partitioned into two or three separate countries or becomes a semi-functioning Shiite-led democracy which gives large autonomy to its various ethnic groups and regions. However, the process of stabilizing Iraq after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein could take a while, just like it did in real life.
 
-Likewise, the U.S. provides a large amount of assistance (including lethal military aid) to both opponents of Assad's regime in Syria and to the Ukrainian government (who are fighting against Russian-supported rebels in Eastern Ukraine). In turn, this results in Assad eventually getting overthrown in Syria and to a more difficult fight for Russia in Ukraine but one which Russia nevertheless still manages to eventually "win".
 
-The U.S. is no more successful at making peace between Israel and the Palestinians between 2009 and 2017 in this scenario than it was either under Bill Clinton or under Al Gore.
 
-North Korea withdraws from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and successfully builds and tests nuclear weapons sometime between 2009 and 2017.
 
Anyway, what exactly am I forgetting to list/state here?
 
Also, does anyone have any thoughts in regards to any of this?


#2
RickyMcMoney

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It's pretty hard to speculate on this level about what would have happened. It is impossible to know how Gore would have reacted if intelligence agencies told him that Saddam Hussein was in possession of WMDs, or any other information they were telling him at the time. It's also very dubious to suppose that North Korea's nuclear program would have been sped up or slowed by what the U.S. president says. A nuclear program is vital to the NK dictator retaining their sovereignty and the credibility of the threats they have continually made. The rest is reliant upon how he would have handled Iraq, which as I have said would be very hard to predict. A huge part of how leaders make decisions is based upon what information they receive. The intelligence and military infrastructures under the president remain pretty similar regardless of who's in office. It's probable that they would push the same narratives with the same agendas regardless of who's president.



#3
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I agree with most of your points. In addition, no bush tax cuts and no war in iraq meand we woulf have been fiscally much better off and perhapd could have paid off all of our debt which we were on track to do before bush. This might have allowed for more favorable policies to be implemented for citizens like lower cost for college.

#4
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You can't forget that we knew WMD's were in Iraq because the U.S. sold them to Iraq during the Iran Iraq war.  And my understanding is that whatever other intelligence there was about "other" WMD's in Iraq was twisted and skewed by the Administration to make it support what they already wanted to do.

 

Al Gore would not have attacked Iraq without solid evidence that they were an imminent threat to the United States, which really didn't exist.  

 

The Afghan war would have happened, because it had too.  No president, even the most peace loving hippie there is, wouldn't have invaded Afghanistan under the circumstances.  



#5
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1. It's pretty hard to speculate on this level about what would have happened.

 

2. It is impossible to know how Gore would have reacted if intelligence agencies told him that Saddam Hussein was in possession of WMDs, or any other information they were telling him at the time.

 

3. It's also very dubious to suppose that North Korea's nuclear program would have been sped up or slowed by what the U.S. president says. A nuclear program is vital to the NK dictator retaining their sovereignty and the credibility of the threats they have continually made.

 

4. The rest is reliant upon how he would have handled Iraq, which as I have said would be very hard to predict. A huge part of how leaders make decisions is based upon what information they receive. The intelligence and military infrastructures under the president remain pretty similar regardless of who's in office. It's probable that they would push the same narratives with the same agendas regardless of who's president.

1. Disagreed.

 

2. One can look at Bill Clinton's policies towards Saddam Hussein to try determining what Al Gore would have done in regards to Saddam Hussein, though.

 

3. And yet international inspectors were monitoring North Korea's nuclear weapons program between 1994 and 2002; indeed, it was only after George W. Bush placed North Korea in the "Axis of Evil" that North Korea kicked international inspectors out of the country. Indeed, there actually were relatively decent relations between the U.S. and North Korea back when Bill Clinton was U.S. President.

4. I strongly doubt that Al Gore would have invaded Iraq due to the fact that Bush and his administration distorted some of the intelligence in regards to Iraq (which Gore would almost certainly not have done) and because I strongly suspect that Gore would have been more aware than Bush was about the massive challenges that restructuring Iraq after a U.S. invasion of Iraq would entail.



#6
Futurist

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I agree with most of your points. In addition, no bush tax cuts and no war in iraq meand we woulf have been fiscally much better off and perhapd could have paid off all of our debt which we were on track to do before bush. This might have allowed for more favorable policies to be implemented for citizens like lower cost for college.

Agreed; however, please keep in mind that the U.S. budget in this scenario will probably only remain balanced up to 2007 or so; afterwards, the 2008 financial crisis (which I strongly expect would still have occurred) would have still almost certainly created an enormous U.S. deficit (at least for several years).



#7
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1. You can't forget that we knew WMD's were in Iraq because the U.S. sold them to Iraq during the Iran Iraq war.  And my understanding is that whatever other intelligence there was about "other" WMD's in Iraq was twisted and skewed by the Administration to make it support what they already wanted to do.

 

1 (continued). Al Gore would not have attacked Iraq without solid evidence that they were an imminent threat to the United States, which really didn't exist.  

 

2. The Afghan war would have happened, because it had too.  No president, even the most peace loving hippie there is, wouldn't have invaded Afghanistan under the circumstances.  

1. Yes, I am tempted to completely agree with all of this.

 

2. Agreed; of course, there is the possibility that Gore would have simply targeted Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and would have avoided overthrowing the Taliban, but I don't think that this would have been very likely, especially in the post-9/11 atmosphere here in the U.S.



#8
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Agreed; however, please keep in mind that the U.S. budget in this scenario will probably only remain balanced up to 2007 or so; afterwards, the 2008 financial crisis (which I strongly expect would still have occurred) would have still almost certainly created an enormous U.S. deficit (at least for several years).

 

 

On the contrary, the 2008 financial crisis would not have occurred.

 

The 2008 crisis occurred because the property bubble burst in the USA, sending shockwaves throughout the world.

 

The bubble was caused by the way Bush decided to fund the Iraq war. Instead of raising taxes, or borrowing more to directly fund the war, Bush decided on an unconventional approach - he grew the economy of the USA so he got more taxes (with the same tax rate) from a bigger economy. This was pretty clever, actually, but Bush never thought that the USA would maintain a military presence in Iraq so long after the fact. The policy could have been kept for a year, maybe two sustainably. As the USA's presence, and costs, dragged on, however, the policy backfired, creating a bubble. A bubble that, as we all know, burst in 2008.

 

Unless Al Gore also decided to invade Iraq and fund the war using stimulation of the economy.

 

Is this post sarcasm?  



#9
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Agreed; however, please keep in mind that the U.S. budget in this scenario will probably only remain balanced up to 2007 or so; afterwards, the 2008 financial crisis (which I strongly expect would still have occurred) would have still almost certainly created an enormous U.S. deficit (at least for several years).


Fair enough. Imo we need to put glass-steagall back into place.

#10
Yuli Ban

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I was going to say not much of a difference until I researched neoconservativism more in-depth, and realized we had people who thought Nineteen Eighty-Four was a study-guide running the country for 8 years.

 

Goodness, I can't even begin to imagine how things might've changed. Would there have been a PATRIOT Act? Maybe, maybe not. And if so, it would've been paltry compared to ours.

 

Gore is a technocrat, wholly for green energy. The domestic culture of USica would've been shifted to the left, undoubtedly.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#11
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Agreed; however, please keep in mind that the U.S. budget in this scenario will probably only remain balanced up to 2007 or so; afterwards, the 2008 financial crisis (which I strongly expect would still have occurred) would have still almost certainly created an enormous U.S. deficit (at least for several years).

 

 

On the contrary, the 2008 financial crisis would not have occurred.

 

The 2008 crisis occurred because the property bubble burst in the USA, sending shockwaves throughout the world.

 

The bubble was caused by the way Bush decided to fund the Iraq war. Instead of raising taxes, or borrowing more to directly fund the war, Bush decided on an unconventional approach - he grew the economy of the USA so he got more taxes (with the same tax rate) from a bigger economy. This was pretty clever, actually, but Bush never thought that the USA would maintain a military presence in Iraq so long after the fact. The policy could have been kept for a year, maybe two sustainably. As the USA's presence, and costs, dragged on, however, the policy backfired, creating a bubble. A bubble that, as we all know, burst in 2008.

 

Unless Al Gore also decided to invade Iraq and fund the war using stimulation of the economy.

 

I would disagree with this.  The war may have tipped the scale, so if there was no Iraq war, the recession may have been delayed, but the problems were deep and caused not by the war but by banks and Wall St.  It still would have happened, just a few years later.  I don't know that Gore would have handled it any better than Bush did.  


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#12
Futurist

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Agreed; however, please keep in mind that the U.S. budget in this scenario will probably only remain balanced up to 2007 or so; afterwards, the 2008 financial crisis (which I strongly expect would still have occurred) would have still almost certainly created an enormous U.S. deficit (at least for several years).

 

 

On the contrary, the 2008 financial crisis would not have occurred.

 

The 2008 crisis occurred because the property bubble burst in the USA, sending shockwaves throughout the world.

 

The bubble was caused by the way Bush decided to fund the Iraq war. Instead of raising taxes, or borrowing more to directly fund the war, Bush decided on an unconventional approach - he grew the economy of the USA so he got more taxes (with the same tax rate) from a bigger economy. This was pretty clever, actually, but Bush never thought that the USA would maintain a military presence in Iraq so long after the fact. The policy could have been kept for a year, maybe two sustainably. As the USA's presence, and costs, dragged on, however, the policy backfired, creating a bubble. A bubble that, as we all know, burst in 2008.

 

Unless Al Gore also decided to invade Iraq and fund the war using stimulation of the economy.

 

I would disagree with this.  The war may have tipped the scale, so if there was no Iraq war, the recession may have been delayed, but the problems were deep and caused not by the war but by banks and Wall St.  It still would have happened, just a few years later.  I don't know that Gore would have handled it any better than Bush did.  

Why a few years later, though?



#13
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Why a few years later, though?

 

In my view it would still have happened around the same time regardless of whether Bush or Gore was president.  The foundation for what caused the 2008 Financial crisis, was in the works for decades.  Relaxation of banking laws, flawed-overworked and underfunded regulatory agencies who were slow to respond to new extremely complex financial instruments, and etc...Anything a president in 2008 might have done, would only have pushed it forward or pushed it back by a few months.  Definitely not years.  For a real difference in the time frame you'd need to go back and look at things Reagan and Clinton did.


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#14
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In my view it would still have happened around the same time regardless of whether Bush or Gore was president.  The foundation for what caused the 2008 Financial crisis, was in the works for decades.  Relaxation of banking laws, flawed-overworked and underfunded regulatory agencies who were slow to respond to new extremely complex financial instruments, and etc...Anything a president in 2008 might have done, would only have pushed it forward or pushed it back by a few months.  Definitely not years.  For a real difference in the time frame you'd need to go back and look at things Reagan and Clinton did.

 

 

 

While the deregulation did play a major part, it was the economic stimulation of the Bush Era pre-Iraq war the really set the stage for the 2008 financial crisis. While it is likely that a bubble might have arisen and burst anyway, it would certainly not have done so in 2008. I'm confident in saying that the crisis could have been pushed back a few years, at least. It would still have happened though - economic crashes are natural parts of capitalism.

 

Two fantastic articles that explain my point better than I ever could.  You're welcome...

 

http://www.usnews.co...inancial-crisis

http://www.nerdwalle...-act-explained/

 

With proper rules and regulations in place booms and busts do not have to be a part of capitalism.  



#15
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I am not sure about many of the speculative what-would-have-happened scenarios presented.  It is hard enough to remember how Gore felt about many of the issues and even harder to figure how he might have reacted with other foreign leaders and nations of the time.  I am not so sure that 9/11 would have still happened.  Many higher up holdovers of from the Clinton administration were trying hard to have the Bush administration take seriously the possiblity of Al Qaeda actions.  So I think Gore's administration would have been more careful.  Whether that would have been enough to stop the attack we will never know.

 

If the attack had occurred, I agree that some kind of military action would have occurred in Afghanistan.

 

I can't see Gore authorizing an invasion of Iraq.

 

As for the recession, the Bush administration actually actively worked to prevent regulators from correcting abuses that were found prior to the melt down. Of course, the repeal of Glass-Steagall under the Clinton administration did play a major role.  Whether more vigorous regulatory efforts that Gore would have probably allowed would have been enough to avoid the bubble burst is hard to say.  It is also hard to say whether present actions under Obama will prevent another future crash.  Many analysts think that present efforts are not sufficient. 


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#16
Recyvuym

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Strangely enough, I had this thought myself today. Here's an excellent article on the topic. The author concludes that Gore would also have gone to war in Iraq, and I'm tempted to agree.

 

It's harder to say whether the surveillance state would have still emerged. Since it relates to intelligence agencies, its real history remains obfuscated. The cynical side of me says it was already well underway by that stage, and a difference in presidency would have changed, at most, the timing of its implementation.

 

The GFC would also still have happened, for reasons that have been discussed. The timing may also have been different, and depending on Al Gore's economic policies, especially towards any wars on drugs or terror he might be waging, the impact on the U.S. economy might have been mitigated.

 

Overall, I think the world would look roughly the same, except slightly better. Iraq may not have devolved into sectarian bloodshed, the Middle East in general could be stabler as a result, ISIS might not exist, there might be fewer failed states and less debt, the world MIGHT be in a better position to deal with both cyber warfare and climate change.

 

The topic also begs the question of whether Gore would have been reelected, and what the difference might have been if he wasn't. Perhaps Cheney and friends could have stirred up enough wartime paranoia to get him booted out and replaced with someone who had less restraint. It usually works the opposite way, though; in times of stress, people figure, better the devil you know. I think Gore would have been reelected, though who knows, he might have been a really mediocre president.


I loudly predicted the second wave of the Global Financial Crisis would begin by the 31st of March 2017. But I was wrong! Observe my well-deserved public humiliation here, here and here. Let this be a warning to all of you who try to guess the future. Yes, that means you, reading this now! Put that prediction back in your pocket! Do it now, before it's too late! (Also check out my userpage, it's even funnier.)





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