Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Obama's State of the Union

Obama tried to highlight his so-called foreign policy achievements in his final State of the Union (SOTU), when in reality the conflicts around the globe had risen sharply and two states, Russia and China posed a direct challenge to the US and Putin, in particular, challenged the global order with Moscow’s continued intervention in Ukraine and Syria. The SOTU came at a time when ten US Navy servicemen were seized by Iran in the Persian Gulf and when the majority of Americans were probably re-living the horrors of the Iran Hostage Crisis under another Democrat, Jimmy Carter. The Chief Executive instead of addressing the issue of the sailors in Iranian custody patted himself for the flawed Iran deal and how he had averted a war in the Gulf. Arizona Sen. John McCain, once Obama's GOP challenger for the presidency, blasted the speech for not including any reference to the incident in the Persian Gulf.

"Ten American sailors have been taken into custody in Iran," he said in a statement. "But President Obama completely omitted this latest example of Iran's provocative behavior so as not to interfere with his delusional talking points about his dangerous nuclear deal with Iran.
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy also slammed the omission.

"I was very concerned that he's missing where the challenge of the world is with security -- he sits and talks positively about Iran when they just took 10 of our Navy sailors," he said after the speech.

Never in the history of the US was a president more delusional than this man; he has had very little understanding of international affairs and US foreign policy – to give an example, in 2014 in an interview to David Remnick (New Yorker) he referred to the IS as a jv squad – “I think the analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a JV team puts on Lakers uniforms, that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant. I think there is a distinction between the capacity and reach of a bin Laden and a network that is actively planning major terrorist plots against the homeland versus jihadists who are engaged in various local power struggles and disputes, often sectarian.” Recent polls show that about half of Americans disapprove of Obama’s handling of world affairs, largely thanks to fear over worldwide terrorist attacks by the Islamic State and al Qaeda. But although Obama spoke at length about the terrorist threat to the U.S., he mostly downplayed it, warning against “over-the-top claims that this is World War III.”

In his SOTU he did not even make a reference to the Israeli-Palestinian issue and his own tense relations with the Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu. Obama made only a passing reference to Afghanistan, a year after he boasted moments into his 2015 State of the Union address that “for the first time since 9/11, our combat mission in Afghanistan is over.” That remains officially true, but 15 Americans have died in the country since October as the U.S. takes on a growing combat role to support a struggling Afghan army against a resurgent Taliban. And he dedicated just one line to Syria’s brutal civil war, saying only that the U.S. is “partnering with local forces and leading international efforts to help that broken society pursue a lasting peace.” The country is on the verge of breaking up as a result of a four year civil war and the US president who saw Iraq in Syria and dithered hopes for an enduring peace. This is height of his delusion.


Peter Coates said...

Hi Kumar

Yes the US under Obama has slipped as a foreign policy leader of the Western world. Even Australia is refusing US hopes that Australia will send more troops to help the Shiite Regimes of Iraq and Syria

Important to Obama, but less so to, Americans and the rest of the world is that Obama was the first Negro President. He also has fanciful plans to control guns before he lameduck clocks out.

Russia's intervention in Syria has the support of Shiite countries but also the more quiet support of Israel. I would say that many Western countries are also quietly concurring with Putin's campaign against the Turkish-IS oil business as well as pounding other "free" Sunni jihadi groups. Putin, unlike Obama, recognises that the "free" Sunni groups of today become the al-Qaeda enemies of the West, India and Russia, tomorrow.

Many in the US military and intel establishment have given up on Obama's "leadership".

A bit of jihadi activity in Australia's region has suddenly exploded



Kumar said...

Thanks Pete. The entire Obama Administration faltered on crucial issues relating to foreign policy. The exit from Iraq created a vacuum and helped spawn terror in the region. To top it, Obama grossly underestimated the capabilities of the IS. Today IS is able to target western interests in any country, Islamic or otherwise. In Istanbul, the casualties were German, the target was a popular foreign tourist attraction. In Jakarta, again one of the dead is a Dutchman and the target was Starbucks and the area housed foreign missions. If the West continues to refer to the IS as JV squad, God save the US.