Bonnie Jo Mount/The Washington Post
The Greatness Agenda

Fiona Hill’s Un-American Idea of America

Hill sees America only as an idea that she and other elites represent. “America First” is not American, in her book, because it’s exclusionary and imagines America may have interests that diverge from the globalist consensus.


- November 28th, 2019
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Immigrants are what make America great. They should also run our foreign policy. That was the implicit message of former National Security Council official Fiona Hill’s testimony last week.

“This is a country of immigrants,” the British immigrant said. “Everyone immigrated to the United States at some time in their family history. And this is what, for me, really does make America great.”

Immigration, according to Hill, is the “essence of America.”

Hill’s comment was in response to House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) asking for her opinion about the criticism of Lt. Colonel Alexander Vindman, a fellow impeachment inquiry witness and immigrant. The question essentially begged Hill to deliver a speech on the greatness of immigrants.

Several of the impeachment inquiry witnesses made their immigrant background a central part of their testimony. Hill and Vindman did, as did Ambassador Maria Yovanovitch and Gordon Sondland.

Liberal journalists loved the immigration message from these deep state representatives. “The parade of witnesses before the House Intelligence Committee offers an implicit testament to a different America, more welcoming and inspiring,” declared Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus.

The Voice of America, a tax-funded, government-operated outlet, said the immigrant witnesses “inspired confidence in the American experiment.”

Left-wing Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Will Bunch argued immigration became the hidden story of the impeachment proceedings. “It’s a story about a United States that was a safe haven for refugees fleeing totalitarianism and genocide,” he wrote, “and how the people saved by that generosity became zealous defenders of America—only to see a dangerous demagogue threaten to drag their country into a muck that looked much like the faraway lands they’d escaped.”

New York Times columnist Roger Cohen fawned over Hill’s testimony as the true being of America and claimed Trump’s message should really be “Deny what America is.” Apparently, unelected immigrant bureaucrats are the real America, not “deplorables” in flyover country.

Trump Voters Rejected the Foreign Policy Establishment

The columnists are right to see the immigration angle in the impeachment hearings—they just take the wrong position on it.

The witnesses are an argument against arrogant immigrants like Fiona Hill running America’s foreign policy. They show contempt for middle America and believe they are the real America. They consider opposition to their foreign-policy agenda to be un-American and possibly treasonous. To attack one of them is akin to burning the Constitution.

“Our nation is being torn apart. Truth is questioned. Our highly professional and expert career foreign service is being undermined,” Hill warned in her testimony, signaling that our “expert career foreign service” must never face criticism.

Most of the “damning” testimony at the hearings focused on how awful it was that Trump delayed funding to Ukraine and how he criticized Yovanovitch. It was lost on these witnesses that they are supposed to serve our elected representatives and not serve themselves. Their foreign policy agenda was rejected when Americans elected Donald Trump.

To Hill and her colleagues, America must be globalism’s policeman. America has to give Ukraine aid without strings attached—American interests apparently are threatened if there is any delay or questions raised about where this money goes. Russia is the ultimate enemy and must be challenged at every turn, even if it’s not quite clear how American interests are served by this hostility. America is obligated to interfere, meddle, and even invade other nations that fall off the globalist reservoir. 

This mindset explains Hill’s curious insistence that Ukrainian meddling in the 2016 election is a “fictional narrative” peddled by Russia. In reality, it was a story investigated by multiple mainstream outlets.

Troublingly, Hill also claimed criticism of George Soros is an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory. “The trope against Mr. George Soros was also created for political purposes, and this is the new ‘Protocols of The Elders of Zion,’” the Brookings Institution alum said. “This is the longest-running anti-Semitic trope that we have in history.”

Sadly, Hill was hired by Trump. That decision should have made her loyal to the president’s America First agenda instead of actively opposed to it. Ultimately, though, there is no difference between her and those who would’ve worked in Barack Obama’s National Security Council. The foreign policy blob is a permanent fixture in Washington, D.C. and it attaches itself to every presidency, regardless of party.

Americanism . . . or Globalism?

Hill sees America only as an idea that she and other elites represent. “America First” is not American, in her book, because it’s exclusionary and imagines America may have interests that diverge from the globalist consensus. America First also imagines Americans as a people who, like all peoples, prioritize their own interests over abstract ideas. That’s a huge no-no to the foreign policy establishment.

Hill’s arrogance and lack of connection to Middle America is not the only problem with relying on uber-patriotic immigrants to determine our foreign policy. A Senate investigation recently revealed that several foreign-born government employees were handing off sensitive data to China. These fifth columnists also tried to recruit other foreign-born staffers for the mission. 

Some of the sensitive information that these researchers obtained included genomic data on millions of Americans.

The impeachment witnesses were of course not that bad, but the story undermines the condescending claims that immigrants are more American than the native-born.

American foreign policy shouldn’t exist to advance the political values of the Acela elite. It should put the interests of the American people first. A temporary hold on foreign aid to a corrupt government is only un-American to those who don’t understand America. We’re more than a commitment to globalism.

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