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The Four Roots of Obama’s Foreign Policy Catastrophes

by Keith Koffler on March 28, 2014, 1:12 pm

President Obama’s foreign policy is a disaster. He cruised along for awhile, but then the rest of the world figured him out and started taking matters into their own hands, for which the Devil has made ample use.

And now, as everyone can see, we’re in deep doodoo in every corner of the globe.

Here’s why:

1. Obama never cared about foreign policy

The president came into office with one thing in mind: To “fundamentally transform” the United States into a a kind of Northern Cuba where he could “spread the wealth around” to the poor from the rich, the upper middle class, and anyone else who’d gotten to the “point” where they’d “earned enough money.”

Foreign policy and the wars the United States has been fighting were a terrible distraction for Obama. Sure, he wanted to do his best to protect the country – kill bad guys with drones, etc. – but otherwise the goal was to wind down the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and pay minimal attention to world affairs.

2. Obama is a naïve peacenik

I’m a peacenik too, but hopefully not a naïve one.

If you went to college, Obama was the guy whose room you went to smoke pot – he knew where to get the Hawaiian!! – and talk about how Ronald Reagan was a dunce who starred in a movie with a monkey, how the United States was spreading its capitalist, imperialist philosophy of greed around the world, and how Communists in Latin America were just trying to make a better life for their people.

Such thinking – this trust in the benign intentions of those who want to destroy us combined with a mistrust of the West – still animates this president. This is why he fails to understand that Islamists want to first do Eurpostan and then move on to Ameristan – and can’t be trusted to, say, run Egypt – and that bad people will try to extend their influence around the world as we pull back from it.

3. Obama is not ready for prime time

Obama not only was bereft of any serious experience before becoming president, but he lacks, as my gastroenterologist would say, the intestinal fortitude for the job.

He draws red lines, and then whimpers away. He makes tough statements without the means to back them up. He fails to even try to bend others to his will, unless they’re Israeli. He lacks the relish for mixing it up in the ring when he has to, the boyish pugilism that comes out when a great leader needs it. He’d rather play golf.

4. Last but not least, there’s this:

Hillary noodles

Hillary Clinton was a disastrous choice for Secretary of State, and a choice made for all the wrong reasons.

She had absolutely no qualifications for the job, no serious understanding of foreign policy, and nothing resembling a strategic vision. She’s Henry Kissinger, except without the Henry Kissinger. You don’t hear about an Obama Doctrine because there is none. There are no guiding principles to this president’s foreign policy, because there was no one around to think any up.

I believe that Hillary was chosen as Secretary of State because Obama’s political advisors told him to do it.

Hillary was Obama’s chief political rival among Democrats. The only presidents in the last 50 years who either lost their reelection race or figured they didn’t like their chances and decided not run – Lyndon Johnson, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, and George H.W. Bush – all had serious challengers from within their own Party.

Hillary had to be removed. And so he put her on political ice in the most effective way possible: by bringing her in at a very high level.

Also, he read a book that said Lincoln surrounded himself with his political rivals, and Obama wanted to be like Lincoln.

But a president needs a good Secretary of State. And Obama got one who failed to lodge a single noticeable foreign policy achievement during her four years on the job.

And so neither has he. And now, the lack of attention and competency is causing hundred of venus flytraps to bloom all over the world.

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{ 43 comments }

Moe March 28, 2014 at 1:20 pm

Excellent Keith, thank you!

Langley Spook March 28, 2014 at 3:48 pm

HA!
Maybe if SOMEONE? looked into “Barack Hussein Obama” life/backstory (Obama went to Columbia? Harvard Law? = I never saw any proof?) as a nobody-never working community organizer, raised on Socialist-Anti-American propaganda… Then Obama became a corrupt local Illions ‘Democrat’ politician in that cesspool of Chicago. They say Obama served as a local politician voting “Present” all the time… Then Obama became a “US Senator” who never served his whole term…
And somehow became the “US President” in 2008… And the USA has gone to H#ll since then (2008-2016…?)

Sanchez March 28, 2014 at 1:20 pm

How can Obama’s foreign policy be a disaster when he has no foreign policy that has been stated?

Regardless of what the left thought about the Bush Doctrine, he had a policy that he long held. Unlike Obama who operates on popularity polls.

I was told as many were as a child by our parents “Anyone can grow up to be President” Well, I never knew they really meant just anyone!

bonnie March 28, 2014 at 1:24 pm

The low-information voters did not elect a leader, they elected a politician. All Obama knows to do is smile big, show his sparkling teeth and shake hands. We are in such trouble.

Mr. T. March 28, 2014 at 3:24 pm

They elected a TV personality.

Scottso March 28, 2014 at 6:01 pm

Exactly

they elected him for the smile, the skin color, the ‘coolness’, the voice, the way he could read a script. All superficial stuff.
They wanted a black jack kennedy.

They wanted to elect someone who said all the right things, but never did anything to show he could do any thing.

DeniseVB March 28, 2014 at 1:27 pm

….and Putin knows this.

Owen_Kellogg March 28, 2014 at 1:31 pm

Keith, you nailed it on all four counts.

srdem65 March 28, 2014 at 1:41 pm

It would be wonderful if some of us could say this is wrong, that MrO’s policy is strong, or that he knows exactly what the world needs, but that isn’t what’s going to happen here.
Every one of the four points is on the mark. There’s no denying this man was not ready to be a President, and considering his background and lack of experience. he never would have been promoted as a credible candidate for this office if he were a White man.

This is it though, it’s now a reality that we are stuck with a floundering, incoherent and ridiculously dangerous foreign policy of ‘speak like a meanie and carry a baton’.

DMcG March 28, 2014 at 1:49 pm

Reading that summary, I am reminded that Obama really has a lot to recommend him as president. Like, a nice smile. A decent swing. A fair jump shot. Not really a lot else.

Myhairsonfire March 28, 2014 at 2:03 pm

Strong piece.

Darkangel March 28, 2014 at 2:05 pm

We elected someone to run our country, whose sole qualification was a preternatural gift for running his mouth.

We have sown the wind–literally!–and we are reaping the whirlwind.

Girly1 March 28, 2014 at 2:10 pm

Obama had ulterior motives with Hillary. He needed to keep his former foe close to the vest, and she was also the only way Obama could have access to her popular husband without being obvious. Bubba would always be available for advice when Barry got himself in a pickle, i.e. selling the Bush tax cuts to DEMS. Bill was Obama’s insurance policy. Obama had to look good in order for Hillary to look good. The reality was that the Clinton name gave credibility and standing to Barry. And… Bill was always available for photo ops.

We would have been better off if Bubba had gotten his third term after all is said and done.. All of Obama’s conniving and scheming was for naught. He is, and always will be, an empty suit, and the Clintons are now treating him like a pariah. Karma is a bleep! Hillary is finished, IMO.

Andrew P March 31, 2014 at 10:25 pm

Obama wanted Hillary close – but not too close. That is why she was Sec State instead of Vice President.

anneinarkansas March 28, 2014 at 2:11 pm

Excellent analysis and very frightening….long time still to have this man in the WH.

Lindy March 28, 2014 at 2:37 pm

Great analysis, but there is a PS in the person of Hillary’s successor… Kerry will likely prove to be just as inept in the Sec of State position.

Sadie March 28, 2014 at 2:50 pm

Keith: Excellent analysis!
Do you know a good endodontist you can recommend to the WH – Obama is in dire need of root canal. ☺

Julie Brueckheimer March 28, 2014 at 2:59 pm

Excellent. I would put Hillary first of all because of Benghazi. If you are going to sacrifice your own citizens, are you interested in the world? They’re cut of the same cloth, Obama and Hillary: moi, toujours moi.

Julie Brueckheimer March 28, 2014 at 3:06 pm

How about a fifth one that he is basically too dishonest of a person to expect any results or to be trusted by anyone? People are on to him. He is denying that he and the Pope discussed religious freedom, contraception and abortion. What country could trust him even with allowances made for double talk?

Marcus March 28, 2014 at 3:27 pm

There’s a sad history of US Democrats creating a false narrative about their meetings with Popes.

After Billy Clinton met with Pope John Paul, he gave a press conference about what they talked about and agreed upon. John Paul was listening to the press conference from inside the Vatican and was so incensed at Clinton’s fabrication of what was said that he sent out his press person to set the record straight DURING Clinton’s presser. When Nancy Pelosi gave her little press conference after meeting with Benedict, the Vatican issued a statement correcting what Pelosi had said about her meeting with the Pope–considered an unusual step for the Vatican to take at the time. And now we have the Obama administration’s effort to spin what was said between the two. Amazing stuff.

Julie Brueckheimer March 28, 2014 at 3:32 pm

Re Clinton: I remember John Paul II complaining that Ole Billy couldn’t keep his eyes off the naked bodies in the paintings and wasn’t listening to a word the Pope said.

Marcus March 29, 2014 at 7:13 pm

LOL.. I hadn’t heard that…….but am not in the least surprised.

Marcus March 28, 2014 at 3:10 pm

Keith, you absolutely nailed it.

Langley Spook March 28, 2014 at 3:16 pm

I DARE SOMEONE/ANYONE on “FOX News” ever mention these 4 EXCELLENT POINTS that Mr. Koffler mentioned…

No offense… being a USN Vet and History & Politics major at college I KNEW “Barack Hussein Obama” was a FAILURE as a “US Pres.” from 2008 and when it came to these 4 points…

Star March 28, 2014 at 4:23 pm

Dennis Miller said to O’Reilly something to the effect–You keep saying he is too smart not to have a plan, he has no plan, Billy. He has no idea. The only place on TV that will approach these pts is Fox.

veritaseequitas March 28, 2014 at 3:44 pm

So Obama is the incredibly nasty, nose picking middle schooler who never grew up. Geez, doesn’t take much to be POTUS.

Scott March 28, 2014 at 3:59 pm

That is about as succinct a summation of the man, his shortfalls, and the situation as I’ve read. A very well-written post.

Star March 28, 2014 at 4:19 pm

EXCELLENT!!!! Answers everything except why an Iranian-Am slumlord is basically running this jt. Or maybe it does ans that.

Stefan March 28, 2014 at 4:49 pm

Excellent analysis Keith.

I think two other reasons Hillary was picked for Secretary of State were:

1) She had a $13 million campaign debt to pay off.

2) As Secretary of State it would be easier for Bill Clinton, a private citizen, to shill for money as a power broker in foreign countries to pay that debt off.

And the Clintons have always been interested in money and power first. The concerns of the rest of us matter not a whit to them.

Andy from Beaverton March 28, 2014 at 4:51 pm

Keith, it seems like this nightmare is never going to end. Can you put a countdown clock showing days Obama has left in office? We need something to look forward to.
http://www.timeanddate.com/countdown/generic?msg=Obama%20GTFO&p0=263&year=2017&month=1&day=20&hour=0&min=0&sec=0

Aileen March 28, 2014 at 4:57 pm

Your very best analysis, Keith…so far.

OldTimer March 28, 2014 at 5:34 pm

Excellent analysis. Thanks. Regan had Thacher. Bush had Blair…..but when it comes to Obama…Obama and ??? He has no good buddy on the world scene he can turn to. He treats our friends as enemies and our enemies as friends. Who trust him?

Jerry Carlson March 28, 2014 at 5:55 pm

What a great post! Fist bump Keith!

JohnK625 March 28, 2014 at 6:41 pm

Actually, if you take an objective look at all of the significant requirements of the leader of a country – understanding of economic system, social systems, requirements for border security, relations with other countries, consistent foreign policies, and a clear understanding of what it means to be the “Leader of the country”, in all cases, Obama appears to have about the same level of understanding and competence as a college sophomore, and I have known some sophomores who are better than he is.

jay hoenemeyer March 28, 2014 at 7:22 pm

And he’s not very bright . Glib , yes . But not a real first class mind . He skated through the Ivies trading on white guilt but otherwise not a really bright guy . An aside , to some extent higher ed has caught on to the racket : when my son went through law school all of his graded work was identified with his Social Security #, no more ‘Barack Hussein ‘stuff . Think what we would have been spared had Barry Dunham stayed around .

rayra March 28, 2014 at 9:30 pm

Management by crisis. There is no strategic plan excepting their quest for personal / ideological power. Beyond that there is void.

gracepmc March 29, 2014 at 1:24 am

Good show Keith.

All that political ice Obama provided Hillary — she put in her drinks as she circled the globe, biding her time.

Junius March 29, 2014 at 7:01 am

Spot on.

steve c March 29, 2014 at 2:33 pm

This is one of the best things you’ve written in the few years I’ve followed this blog, thanks Keith!

csd March 31, 2014 at 3:51 pm

A trained ape could do better.

Sundance March 31, 2014 at 6:11 pm

OB is and always has been an empty suit reading a script from a teleprompter. OB is the Neville Chamberlain of the 21st centurn, a left wing labor pacifist.
This country is great in spite of OB and his clowns, not because of them!!!

Robert Chapman March 31, 2014 at 10:35 pm

The authors of this article are incredibly prejudiced and apparently supremely ignorant of international affairs.

The US is finally regaining the status and power it lost from the disastrous wars waged in the name of the phony Global War On Terrorism as a direct of the foreign policy initiatives implemented by the Obama Administration.

Lancelot Link April 1, 2014 at 6:29 am

But, but, but, Hillary was the most traveled Sec of State in US history… And she helped secure micro-loans for dozens of small, female-owned businesses around the globe! Amd she gave the Russian foreign Minister a plastic “reset” button, that, while actually non-functioning and misspelled in Russian, was a real game-changer! And don’t forget about Benghazi! Uh, no, well, FORGET about Ben-whatever, it’s old news and doesn’t matter because Hillary is the greatest woman in recorded history and she should be the next President because…. She’d be the first female President, then of course we’ll need to elect an illegal alien in 2024 because we’ve never had a Mexican president, then in 2032 we’ll have to elect a one- legged transgender midget because, well, we’ve never elected one of those….