Foreign policy in these debates means: Iraq, Iran, Israel, Afghanistan and Russia. And that’s it. China — China! — barely came up. India and Pakistan (Pakistan came up in the Afghanistan context, but wouldn’t you think that maybe the new nuclear agreement between the US and India, concluded just last week for gosh sakes, might make an appearance?). Forget Africa and Latin America of course, except the obligatory quick Darfur mention. How about Syria and Lebanon? The occupied territories (“Israel,” above, means only that both candidates have to pledge they’ll defend Israel, and then they can move on having checked that box, but as to actual discussion of the West Bank and Gaza and the peace process, nada). No questions on torture. No questions on restoring America’s standing in the world, though Obama did work in a mention of it. And so on.
Agreed. Though, I was pleased that the conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo did come up in a question about humanitarian intervention.