Kasich and former U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates addressed the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, a bipartisan group of more than 500 businesses and non-profits. Kasich, who introduced Gates to the audience, spent much of his time at the mic rehashing stories about working with U2 rock star Bono on humanitarian aid decades ago.
Gates said America is an anchor for global stability and without American leadership, the strong will prey upon the weak.
Gates argued that America needs to give more thought to downstream consequences to actions, such as aiding a rebel group, and consider the long-term benefits of strategic investments such as building schools or roads in foreign countries.
Vaccinations, education, agricultural support and other investments give people hope that are baby steps toward building democracy in a foreign country, he said. Gates said that sending one brigade of 3,500 soldiers to a foreign nation costs at least $1-billion.
Gates was not among the 50 national security leaders who signed a letter opposing Trump.
Gates wrote in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece that neither Trump or Democrat Hillary Clinton has offered a fully developed vision for foreign affairs but he noted that Trump is “willfully ignorant about the rest of the world, our military and its capabilities and about government itself.”