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Posts Tagged ‘Obama’s foreign policy’

Why Choosing Iran over Syria is a Moral and Strategic Failure for Obama

May 22, 2016 Leave a comment

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There is no argument about the Obama’s foreign policy that has not been leading anywhere but nowhere. Nonetheless when it comes to Iran, history shows this matter is apart from any presidency decision at a time, rather it is embedded within the long term policy of the U.S. governance system. This is because Iran has always been a critical point of geopolitical interest for the United States.

During the cold war era, as a resolution to stop the expansion of communism in the Middle East, U.S. along with its European allies, in a Conference in France in January 1979, came to conclusion to establish a green belt under the Soviet Union border by promoting and supporting the anti-atheist Islamic theocrats to take over the government in Iran. Since then the Mullahs’ regime has shown its extreme domestic and global atrocities in at least three fronts, act and support of terrorism, meddling in neighboring countries, and grave human rights violation against its own people.

During the past almost four decades, six U.S. presidents have been the bystanders of the regime’s shocking security threats across the region and the globe and yet not a single countermeasure against it has been instituted. Over time it has become more evident that such inaction and indifference of U.S. presidents has nothing to do with any individual U.S. government’s lack of will in responding to these unprecedented threats but has emanated in long term U.S. policies, which sought strategies far into future. These long term policies, per domestic and global necessities, are usually modified or changed over the course of a decade or so and has little to do with a single U.S. government’s dogma at a time.

About four decades of appeasing Iran policy has been carried out by six U.S. presidents. Regardless of the Iranian grassroots discontent, they have made all the supportive efforts they could to keep the mullahs’ regime well and alive. Why?, because firstly, the neocolonialism loves to deal with imbecilic Islamic mullahs whom at the very least, per their Sharia among other things, are against the nationalism, a key-code and an invitation card for an easy foreign aggression. And secondly, the apocalyptic IRI regime can easily be used as a wrecking ball to do the U.S. dirty job of destroying the region. How long this policy will continue? is it going to change at all? if so, when? All the evidence suggests that for no less than another term of the U.S. presidency, regardless of whoever is the next U.S. president, the ongoing chaos in Middle East is not only going to continue but will spread all over the region in general and to Iran in particular. Remember this is part of the long-term U.S. geopolitical strategy in the Middle East, which tends to change the current regional borders once established by the Sykes–Picot agreement, exactly a century ago. [DID]

At least now the betrayal is out in the open.

For years, Syria’s revolutionaries have suspected America’s lack of meaningful support for their uprising against dictator Bashar al-Assad was tied to President Barack Obama’s desire to re-engage with Iran.

Iran is Assad’s primary patron (though Russia, which has been bombing on his behalf since September, is a close second). Iran’s Revolutionary Guards are fighting in Syria, as are soldiers of Iran’s proxy Lebanese militia, Hezbollah, along with Shia irregulars from Afghanistan and Iraq whose passage to Syria Iran facilitates.

Defeat for Assad held the prospect of dramatically weakening Iran’s influence in the Middle East, a primary objective of U.S. foreign policy for decades—until Obama changed it.

In a remarkable New York Times Magazine profile, Ben Rhodes, Obama’s deputy national security advisor for strategic communications, does not explicitly link Obama’s abandonment of Syria with Washington’s outreach to Iran, but he frames the importance Obama placed on rapprochement with Iran in a way that makes it difficult to avoid concluding the two were connected. ­­ Read more…

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Five Things we “Learned” from Trump’s Foreign Policy Speech

April 29, 2016 Leave a comment

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As we get closer to the end of the 2016 primary presidential election, I am more convinced that my prognosis about the outcome of this epic, which I made on March 25th, can turn out into a reality. The direction of the 2016 presidential election has been engineered in a bipartisan context, using all the resources at their disposal from GOP and DNC elites to super pacs and super delegates to core members of insiders and outsiders, to stop-Trump movement (!), to public figures and left-to-right mainstream Medias, in order to make sure that Donald Trump would be the GOP nominee. That may be the bad part, but the worse starts when you find out that the intention behind this marathon is not for Trump to be the U.S. President, and the only reason for paving the path for him to be the GOP nominee is to make sure that the Democratic nominee will get to be the next U.S. president, how so? Well according to all kind of polls the GOP nominee Donald Trump will lose the national presidential election to any democratic nominee by 2-digit points (by an average of 15%), these polls have consistently been (±3 error) precise. The underlying rationale behind such poll result, at the very least, is the lack of support of two groups of voters for Trump, the Latinos and women, and also the Clinton’s popularity factor among black voters.

So, why the U.S. political stage is getting prepared for at least another four years of democratic presidency? Well the answer is embedded in U.S. overall domestic and foreign policy change, since Obama has taken over the White House. Health care reform, climate change agreement, clean energy pact, planned parenthood policy, free college education, income inequality policy, gun control order, drone war policy & special operation versus boots on the ground, investment in myriad public services, immigration reform act, Cuba policy change, and Iran’s nuclear agreement are some of the policies that has been initiated during Obama’s presidency however not fully executed.

The cost of changing these policies is humongous and beyond the current capacity of U.S. treasury, which already is under about 20 trillion dollars deficit. It is interesting to mention that most of these policies are relatively in parallel to the cohesive order carried out by European socialist states, which raise the question: has United States already started changing its political/social track? If so, then those policies necessitate growing deep and get rooted in the mainframe of the American society for reshaping the way people live, which requires the continuation of at least another 4 years of Obama legacy. Thus America would soon be witnessing the germination of the giant seed of the social democrats, and accordingly the melt down of the current republican political structure for good.

P.S.: This prognostication can still be valid in case some other candidate rather than Donald Trump, like Tom Cruz, happened to be the GOP nominee through contested convention. Remember the polls shows that the democratic presidential candidate senator Bernie Sanders can easily defeat every republican candidate by a significant margin, which justifies why Sanders tends to continue staying in the race to the end of the primaries in spite of the fact that Hillary Clinton is about 800 delegates (including about 500 super delegates) ahead of him, and needs only 218 more delegates to win the nomination. This could be nothing more than a last minute strategy adjustment for the democratic party (i.e., super delegates are unbound by the voters and can switch their votes anytime they like).[DID]

Donald Trump gave his much-anticipated foreign policy speech at an event hosted by the Center for the National Interest today. It was contradictory in parts and repeated standard Republican criticisms of President Obama, but there was a clear message that is consistent with what Trump has said before. It was not the shift in substance that some predicted. There were several notable takeaways, most of which confirmed what we already knew.

  1. Trump will end U.S. alliances in Europe and Asia

Trump was more specific than usual about his beef with America’s allies. He said,

“We have spent trillions of dollars over time—on planes, missiles, ships, equipment—building up our military to provide a strong defense for Europe and Asia. The countries we are defending must pay for the cost of this defense—and, if not, the U.S. must be prepared to let these countries defend themselves.”

Trump is not asking them just to increase their defense budgets to 2 percent of GDP (a long-standing U.S. claim), nor is he asking them to pay a greater share of overseas bases. Read more…

OBAMA TO OUTLINE CASE FOR A LIMITED FOREIGN POLICY

May 27, 2014 Leave a comment

 

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Obama has no sense of what he wants to do in the world; he wants to have as little as possible to do with it until he gets out of office. As Syria showed, while he might want to leave the world alone, the world doesn’t seem to feel the same way about the United States. As for Iran, while the administration thinks it has bought six months of “wait and see,” the reality is that, when the clock stops ticking, the West will be no more confident it can shut down the Mullahs’ nuclear program than it is now. His vision of a low-risk and run-out-the-clock strategy made him incapable to stop Russia from annexing Crimea. It’s hard to see that Obama’s foreign policy leading anywhere but nowhere. This is a suggestion for him by some folks: There is just too much time left in office to coast till the end, pack up the Nobel Prize, and move back to Hawaii. [DID]

Confronting critics of his foreign policy, President Barack Obama will soon outline a strategy for his final years in office that aims to avoid overreach as the second of the two wars he inherited comes to a close.

The president will make the case for that seemingly more limited approach during a commencement address Wednesday at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. The speech will come amid growing frustration in the White House with Republicans and other critics who contend that Obama has weakened America’s standing around the world and faltered on problems across the Middle East and in Russia, China and elsewhere. Read more…

Obama’s Foreign Policy: Spin Over Substance

May 8, 2014 Leave a comment

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It’s painful watching the YouTube video of President Obama in Manila last week talking about hitting singles and doubles in foreign policy. Everything he says is measured, and most of it is correct. But he acts as if he’s talking to a rational world, as opposed to one inhabited by leaders such as Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

In the realm of power politics, American presidents don’t get points for being right but for being (or appearing) strong. Read more…

U.S. Risks War through its Own Indecision

May 5, 2014 2 comments

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In the Philippines this week, President Obama took a cheap shot at critics of his foreign policy.

“Why is it,” the president pondered at a news conference, “that everybody is so eager to use military force after we’ve just gone through a decade of war at enormous costs to our troops and to our budget?”

But who is banging the shield, demanding war? Critics of the president’s foreign policy have ranged from human rights activists on the political left to congressional Republicans on the right. Read more…

Obama’s Foreign Policy of Denial

May 3, 2014 Leave a comment

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Barack Obama’s 949-word response Monday to a question about foreign policy weakness showed the president at his worst: defensive, irritable, contradictory and at times detached from reality. It began with a complaint about negative coverage on Fox News, when, in fact, it was the New York Times’ front page that featured Obama’s foreign policy failures, most recently the inability to conclude a trade agreement with Japan and the collapse of Secretary of State John Kerry’s Middle East negotiations. Read more…

Obamas’ Foreign-Policy Contradictions

May 2, 2014 Leave a comment

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There is an interesting anomaly in the new Wall Street Journal poll. The headline finding is that most Americans want to pull away from the world: “The 47% of respondents who called for a less-active role in world affairs marked a larger share than in similar polling in 2001, 1997 and 1995.” On the other hand respondents disapprove of President Obama’s foreign policy by a margin of 53 percent to 38 percent, making the president’s approval rating in foreign policy worse than in economic policy (where 42 percent approve of his conduct).  Read more…

Obama’s Receding Foreign-Policy Dreams

April 28, 2014 Leave a comment

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President Barack Obama envisioned building a foreign-policy legacy in his second term: a nuclear deal with sanction-strapped Iran, an end to U.S. involvement in conflicts overseas, and a successful pivot to Asia, including a trans-Pacific trade pact.

Fifteen months after his second inaugural, those goals look more problematic, and Syria’s Bashar al-Assad and Russia’s Vladimir Putin have created new crises. Dashed foreign-policy dreams aren’t unique to this second-term president: Read more…

It is Time for the American People to Call for the Removal of Obama out of the Oval Office

January 28, 2014 4 comments

Tonight Tuesday at 6 pm (PT) Obama will address his 2014 State of the Union Speech, another round of empty slogans.ObamaStateUnion2013__499x315

Before he came to power as President, Obama made many promises for change, let’s take a look at some of the chronic indecisiveness, amateurism, and lack of strategic vision of the Obama Administration:

Domestic

  • closing gap between rich and poor ——– Today the gap has become the biggest ever
  • immigration laws            ———————– Nothing has happened as yet
  • gun control                         ———————– Nothing has happened as yet
  • climate control                 ———————– Nothing has happened as yet
  • Health                                  ———————– Out of 45 million uninsured Americans only 3 million have signed up in the Obama-care program – much ado about nothing!
  • and the list goes on …………

Foreign Policy

  • Egypt: supported Muslim Brotherhood led by Morsi Read more…

Obama, the Inspector Clouseau of Foreign Policy

January 21, 2014 Leave a comment

Sir Hew Strachan, an advisor to the Chief of the British Defense Staff, made some ripples across the pond with his judgment on the U.S. president’s foreign policy. Presentation1-300x382“Obama has no sense of what he wants to do in the world, Strachan said.

Coming from a world-class military historian, it was a stunning rebuke.

Strachan gives Mr. Obama’s Middle East policy, specifically his muddled approach to Syria, two thumbs down. Obama’s initiative there, he says, has taken the situation on the ground “backwards instead of forwards.” That’s just one conclusion he delivers in his forthcoming book, The Direction of War, which evaluates how modern political leaders utilize strategy.

Portraying Obama as the Inspector Clouseau of foreign policy may pump Strachan’s book sales. (After all, it worked for Gates.) But his assessment seems a bit off the mark.

Since the start of his second term, Mr. Obama has exhibited a pretty clear idea of what he wants to do in the world—and that is to have as little as possible to do with it until he gets out of office. The President’s primary objective appears to be “no more Benghazis”—just ride out the second term, go build a library, and then mimic the line of his first former defense secretary: “Hey, everything was fine when I left!” Read more…

Obama’s Messianic and Obsessive Foreign Policy

January 20, 2014 Leave a comment

How grimly amusing to watch the Israeli defense minister get caught in a trap of his own making by telling the truth. In an interview with Yedioth Aharonoth yesterday,Barack Obama Moshe Ya’alon called US Secretary of State John Kerry “obsessive and messianic” and added that Oslo should simply award the unquiet American a Nobel Peace Prize already so that he “leaves us alone.”  For what it’s worth, I’ve heard many pro- and anti-Israel commentators and policymakers in Washington refer to Kerry as much worse than that over the years, but Ya’alon’s was apparently a Kinsley gaffe too far. State Department spokeswoman Jennifer Psaki defended her boss by replying that the Israeli was being “offensive and inappropriate” given all that the United States has done to satisfy Israel’s military needs, and given all that Kerry is currently doing to steward the country away from its own demographic and geopolitical demise. Not content with Ya’alon’s lame non-apology reaffirming “common objectives and interests” (a kiss-off if ever there was one), Foggy Bottom now wants Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, he of the emollient bilateral word, to publicly chastise his own cabinet official. Read more…

A Policy of Folly, Fatuity, and Futility

December 2, 2013 Leave a comment

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The interim agreement that the United States and its partners cut with Iran last week stands as a centerpiece of President Barack Obama’s foreign policy. The Obama administration has walked away from a core objective of U.S. policy for two decades—preventing a nuclear Iran—thereby threatening fundamental regional and global interests. In accepting a partial pause in aspects of Iran’s nuclear program in return for sanctions relief, and in giving up on the insistence that Iran ultimately abandon its nuclear program, the Obama administration invites dire strategic consequences—an existential threat to Israel and our Arab allies, nuclear proliferation in the Middle East, a strengthening of the forces of radicalism and terrorism in the region, and a fundamental weakening of the U.S. position in the region and the world. Congress and U.S. allies in the Middle East must make their own judgments of this deal and retain freedom of action. They may well be able to limit its damage. We encourage them to do so. But we’re also obliged to ask what the deal tells us about our president and his view of the world. Read more…