May 27, 2011

Let's all pretend Obama is tough now.

Yes, I'm this great.
Let's assume for the sake of discussion that President Obama's new found toughness is real and not a re-election tactic designed to fool semi-aware voters. Even if he is suddenly a tough guy, it doesn't make his foreign policy and foreign relations effort any less inept.  But that won't stop the White House and a complicit press from trying to spin the yarn about a tough guy President - an image they feel he needs for re-election in 2012.

Forget for now that he got scolded by Benjamin Netanyahu (and rightfully so) like a schoolboy (no, that's not racist you hypersensitive...types). That doesn't play into tough. Forget the previous posts I've written on Obama the tough guy that were sarcastic about the subject.

As I predicted however, the Democrats and their allies in the liberal media have decided to play off the Bin Laden success (and take all the credit) in order to add some foreign policy credibility to the president. The latest NYT article plays right into that theme.
Mr. Obama has been making the case since he took office that his administration has had to make tough calls on the economy, the auto industry and the war in Afghanistan. His decision to launch the Pakistani raid that killed Osama bin Laden clearly helps officials make the case.

Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. became the latest administration official to deliver the message at a fund-raiser in New Hampshire on Wednesday night.

“We have a leader with the backbone of a ramrod,” Mr. Biden said in Nashua. He added that because of the Bin Laden raid, the real Mr. Obama “is coming into focus.”
So let's suppose he is tough now. That doesn't mean his foreign policy decisioning is sound. That's the polite way of saying stupid. Clearly he isn't familiar with international protocols. The thing moment with the Queen was cringe-worthy. It would be unfair to expect him to know everything about every nation ahead of time. But this is a staunch ally, and it isn't the first time he's flubbed protocol with them. It raises the very fair question - what sort of advisers is he surrounding himself with that these mistakes keep happening?

Or perhaps it's situational awareness that's the issue. Maybe he's so into himself that the protocols of other nations are a nuisance to him and they were the ones at fault. Or at least he was just self-absorbed in the moment.

Another example of that is the 1967 borders comment on Israel. Apparently they told Israel ahead of time that there would be no surprises in his speech on peace in the Middle East. Israel was certainly taken aback by it. Oops. Their response was predictable but it caught the administration by surprise in return.

The track record of treating enemies better than friends has had zero payoff. The lack of response in Iran versus over-response in Egypt shows a lack of situational awareness and a lack of understanding of America's geo-political interests. That's a potentially (and increasingly realistically) disastrously flawed combination.

The lack of a real response to the oil prices (Windmills? Come on!) effect on Americans' lives or America's well being shows an ineptitude in understanding the consequences of inaction. The impact of his spending bonanza on the United States' financial position vis-a-vis China shows the same lack of thought regarding consequences to the nation.

The lack of action on Iranian nuclear weapons development is increasingly preposterous. The lack of coherent co-operation with Pakistan is something that needs to be dealt with also. These issues are dormant. If something is being done, it's likely no more than a study.

The situation in Libya - leaping in without a plan for victory, or a coherent objective is the sort of thing the President would have disparaged President Bush for doing. But the rationale is far less coherent than Bush's Iraq effort. And the few arguments put forward are belied by the lack of similar action in Syria and even Iran. Yet far more than Iraq the Libyan situation has the potential to become another Vietnam. The lack of clarity invites ever-increasing involvement as a result of the situation on the ground. While President Bush may have had no plans for what to do after ousting Saddam, at least he had a plan for winning the war. The Obama administration clearly had no plan for winning phase I. It was simply make a headline splash and then punt to France. That doesn't make for a battle plan - unless you are talking about a re-election battle.

Obama is tough? Let's all pretend he is. It still doesn't make his foreign policy any less dumb (or self-serving).  And really, a tough image is one thing, but reality tells us that much like his be-everything-to-everyone 2008 presidential campaign, it's all just an act.  Tough decisions are not the decisions Joe Biden claims Obama made on the economy etc., wrong doesn't mean tough.  And tough, doesn't mean smart.


  1. He might be acting like a tough guy but He’s accomplish some thing the EX
    President Mr. Bush could not do in 8 years. Maybe he wants to show that when its time to act he can do it

  2. If you mean adding 5 trillion in debt in 2 years, or taking over car companies, or embarrassing himself in front of the Queen of England (in fact, more than once) then yes, absolutely.

    If you are referring to getting Bin Laden, he certainly does not deserve all the credit. As I've pointed out in previous posts, that is due in large part a number of things Bush put in place, including harsh interrogation. Credit is due to the intelligence community and the Seal Team, and even the policies of President Bush.

    President Obama, gave the green light to go ahead, that's all, and even then, he had to sleep on it. Furthermore, he COULD NOT have said no to the mission. I'll give him credit for not finding a way to say no, but this was not an Obama victory, it was an American victory. unless you aren't someone who pays attention to all the facts.


Disagreement is always welcome. Please remain civil. Vulgar or disrespectful comments towards anyone will be removed.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Share This