9/02/2013

Foreign policy experts turn en mass on Obama

From the left you have Fareed Zakaria:
Whatever your views on the larger issues, it’s hard not to conclude that the administration’s handling of Syria over the last year has been a case study in how not to do foreign policy. . . . 
The nature of the strike, we are told, will be short and symbolic – a shot across the bow. In the midst of a civil war in which both sides are in a high-stakes struggle for survival, does anyone think that this will make any difference? . . . 
the manner in which the Obama administration has first created and then mismanaged this crisis will, alas, cast a long shadow on America’s role in the world.
 On the right you have Elliott Abrams:
This context makes his claim that he must seek a vote now, in the Syrian case, unintelligible. It cannot be a matter of principle, or the principle would have applied to intervention in Libya as well. From all appearances, the president either lost his nerve, or more likely read opinion polls suggesting that intervention would be widely unpopular. He came to this decision abruptly, after sending out his new secretary of state to make two powerful, emotional, and affecting war speeches that explained why we must act. And he came to this decision, by all accounts now appearing in the press, without even consulting Secretary of State John Kerry, relying instead on his mostly young and comparatively inexperienced White House staff. 
This erratic conduct leaves U.S. foreign policy in a shambles. . . . .
Another point that has been raised is Obama's focus on enforcing international norms.  Yet, if these are international norms, why is it that Obama is going to have to go it alone.  Even Canada and the UK, two countries that we have always been able to depend on for support, are unwilling to go along this time.

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