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WaPo: Obama at odds with every U.S. president since World War II

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by basso, May 29, 2014.

  1. basso

    basso Contributing Member
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    brutal, and other reviews, from the NYT, WSJ, etc., are just as bad

    [rquoter]At West Point, President Obama binds America’s hands on foreign affairs

    By Editorial Board, Published: May 28

    PRESIDENT OBAMA has retrenched U.S. global engagement in a way that has shaken the confidence of many U.S. allies and encouraged some adversaries. That conclusion can be heard not just from Republican hawks but also from senior officials from Singapore to France and, more quietly, from some leading congressional Democrats. As he has so often in his political career, Mr. Obama has elected to respond to the critical consensus not by adjusting policy but rather by delivering a big speech.

    In his address Wednesday to the graduating cadets at West Point , Mr. Obama marshaled a virtual corps of straw men, dismissing those who “say that every problem has a military solution,” who “think military intervention is the only way for America to avoid looking weak,” who favor putting “American troops into the middle of [Syria’s] increasingly sectarian civil war,” who propose “invading every country that harbors terrorist networks” and who think that “working through international institutions . . . or respecting international law is a sign of weakness.”


    Few, if any, of those who question the president’s record hold such views. Instead, they are asking why an arbitrary date should be set for withdrawing all forces from Afghanistan, especially given the baleful results of the “zero option” in Iraq. They are suggesting that military steps short of the deployment of U.S. ground troops could stop the murderous air and chemical attacks by the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad. They are arguing that the United States should not be constrained by Cyprus or Bulgaria in responding to Russia’s invasion and annexation of parts of Ukraine.

    To those doubters, the president’s address offered scant comfort. Reiterating and further tightening a doctrine he laid out in a speech to the United Nations last fall, Mr. Obama said the United States should act unilaterally only in defense of a narrow set of “core interests,” such as the free flow of trade. When “crises arise that stir our conscience or push the world in a more dangerous direction,” he said, “we should not go it alone.”

    This binding of U.S. power places Mr. Obama at odds with every U.S. president since World War II. In effect, he ruled out interventions to stop genocide or reverse aggression absent a direct threat to the U.S. homeland or a multilateral initiative. Those terms would exclude missions by previous administrations in places such as Somalia and Haiti and Mr. Obama’s own proposal to strike Syria last year — but not the war in Iraq, which was a multilateral campaign.

    Mr. Obama made one new practical proposal: to set up a $5 billion fund to “train, build capacity and facilitate partner countries on the front lines” of fighting terrorism. The initiative is worthy of support as a way of checking emerging threats in places such as Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Mali. But just as a U.S. invasion is not needed for every terrorist haven, not all can be eliminated by training other countries’ forces.

    Mr. Obama also pledged to “ramp up support” for the Syrian opposition. But he made the same promise last year and failed to follow through. Those U.S. allies who worry about Mr. Obama’s foreign policy retreat — and those who have exploited it — will be impressed by a change in U.S. behavior, not the president’s rhetoric.[/rquoter]

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opini...db48fe-e66d-11e3-a86b-362fd5443d19_story.html
     
  2. HR Dept

    HR Dept Contributing Member

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    Yep, Obama's failure to start more wars has been a troubling issue with me for a while now as well.
     
  3. gifford1967

    gifford1967 Contributing Member
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    Thanks Obama. You've far exceeded my expectations in foreign policy.
     
  4. GladiatoRowdy

    GladiatoRowdy Contributing Member

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    The big condemnation is about setting a date for withdrawal from Afghanistan?

    Yawn
     
  5. white lightning

    white lightning Contributing Member

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    Basso, since you highlighted the passage, what interventions on foreign soil would you have liked Obama to send in our troops?
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. JuanValdez

    JuanValdez Contributing Member

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    Good speech. Thanks for the recap.
     
  7. Rashmon

    Rashmon Contributing Member

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    Much like basso, I think I'm going to miss our involvement in wars and global conflict...sigh
     
  8. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

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    ZOMGs - if Obama invents a time machine to retroactively apply his policy out of context, we are screwed - ZOMGs


    Speaking of present times -

    hey how's that Ukraine situation doing?

    Are Senator McCain, (R-Meet the Press-izona) and Senator Graham (R-DADT) still calling for Stinger missles or FECKLESS FECKLES U HAVE LOST YOUR FECK!

    or have things changed a bit?
     
    #8 SamFisher, May 29, 2014
    Last edited: May 29, 2014
  9. brantonli24

    brantonli24 Member

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    It's just the course of history. Prior to WWI/WWII, US was supposedly quite isolationist, (when not buying land from other countries), especially regarding trade. Now, having made its way into so many wars, it's retrenching. It would've happened under any President, especially after an exhausting (politically and emotionally speaking) war in Iraq + Afghanistan. Presidents can do much to bend the shape of history, but they can't control it.
     
  10. g1184

    g1184 Member

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    I'd like to know the answer to this, either from Basso or any other poster who disagrees with the disengagement strategy.

    Why should the U.S. continue to fight other people's battles? Why is it OK to provide a military handout to foreign countries who refuse to fight for themselves, and not OK to provide a domestic handout in the form of tax breaks for Americans who refuse to work for themselves?
     
  11. mc mark

    mc mark Contributing Member

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    I am so thankful we finally have a President who can see a sane future for our country.
     
  12. Bäumer

    Bäumer Contributing Member

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    Maybe ... if you forget about the whole NSA spying on everyone thing.
     
  13. basso

    basso Contributing Member
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    how'd that work out for us?
     
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  14. g1184

    g1184 Member

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    not to get too off track - definitely work to be done on that facet. Major minus points for Obama on internal spying, treatment of whistle-blowers, net neutrality, etc.

    But for preventing the unnecessary loss of life and maiming of American physical and mental health, Obama++.
     
  15. mc mark

    mc mark Contributing Member

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    Agree to a point.

    But taking out terrorists with surgical drone strikes is a lot better than getting 4500 Americans and thousands of Iraqis slaughtered indiscriminately.

    Wouldn't you say?

    And by my count Mr. Obama has kept the US out of at least 5 wars so I'm happy with my votes.
     
  16. g1184

    g1184 Member

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  17. Dubious

    Dubious Contributing Member

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    Considering that there is a highly paid advocacy, organized and funded to oppose every utterance of the Democratic Administration, why would anyone give any real credence to any of it? They will say anything for a price.

    [​IMG]
     
    #17 Dubious, May 29, 2014
    Last edited: May 29, 2014
  18. mtbrays

    mtbrays Contributing Member
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    Why did you dodge the question about which foreign countries you wish President Obama would've sent troops into?
     
  19. Northside Storm

    Northside Storm Contributing Member

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    not so badly, with America after WW2 becoming one of the two superpowers---

    if other nations had received economic intervention and help, and if dissidents like the White Rose, and Carl von Ossietzky had been listened to, and if they had the same ******* mentality, maybe the whole mess would have never happened.
     
  20. Joshfast

    Joshfast "We're all gonna die" - Billy Sole
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    Can we stop allowing bots to post the same crap over and over again?
     

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