President Obama went into office with minimal foreign policy experience. He then attempted to change the face of American foreign policy abroad by taking a different approach. Unfortunately, the results of the President’s hands-off approach are now showing up in recent events around Eurasia and the Middle East. Beyond the very real threat ISIS poses to the U.S., our allies and the world at larger, her are a few more tragic highlights from Obama’s foreign policy career.
1. World Apology Tour
Remember when Obama first got into office and wanted to change the international perception of America? Yup, the tour where he apologized for what we stand for, reached out to our enemies and bowed a lot? Despite what the White House Press Secretary said at the time, it is obvious now that this strategy did not leave us “safer and stronger”.
2. Message to Vladimir
Possibly the worst “hot mic” gaffe of the Presidency (excluding everything Joe Biden says). Obama deals with the contentious issue of missile security by offering flexibility to the Russia. Based on the past year, it appears Vladimir has not forgotten this promise.
3. Crossing the Line
Obama wanted to be clear about Syria: No. Chemical. Weapons. But that red line looked strangely blurred as the President capitulated to the Russian-brokered deal with Assad. Our strong words and American resolve fell flat on the international stage. It should also be noted that Syrians are still dying from chlorine attacks regularly.
4. Asia Tailspin
Obama wanted the U.S. to stop focusing on the Middle East so much and turn our attention to Asia instead, referred to as the “Asia pivot”. It hasn’t gone so well. The White House hasn’t really followed through on the pivot promises, China has been more aggressive on towards neighbors, North Korea is out of control and we can’t even sort out our trade agreements. Plus, taking our eye off the Middle East wasn’t the best idea either.
5. Spontaneous Benghazi
“What difference does it make” will probably haunt Hillary Clinton the rest of her political career. There are so many levels of failure when it comes to Benghazi. The especially striking one was allowing Susan Rice to repeat incorrect information to the press and the UN about the cause of the Benghazi tragedy (and blame it on intelligence).
6. Friendly Spies
Maybe Obama didn’t personally approve spying on the German chancellor or other allies, but he allowed these practices to continue. Arguments on if we should spy on our friends aside, the current government didn’t do a good job of keeping it a secret. Nor did they handle the PR disaster some of these revelations turned into particularly well.
7. Iraq Withdrawal
Even previous critics of the Bush administration are now admitting the Obama’s decision to withdrawal from Iraq was not a good one. It set up the world for the terrible problems facing us today. I also wrote about my thoughts on Obama’s decisions regarding Iraq, here at PIE.
“We don’t have a strategy yet” It has to be included in this list as possibly the worst thing to EVER say in foreign policy. Even Bush had some strategery. And even if it’s the truth; why are you telling our enemies on national TV? So much #facepalm