Disrespecting Obama

Scott and Paul have already commented on the Chinese leaders’ calculated insults to Barack Obama when he landed in China for the G20 conference. But the hostility toward our president didn’t stop there.

One of Obama’s priorities for the G20 meeting was to negotiate a joint effort in Syria with Vladimir Putin. So far, at least, that hasn’t happened. The main news about their meeting is the “death stare” that they exchanged:

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The “reset” has long been a joke, but at least Obama succeeded in getting a meeting with Putin. And who knows, he might be able to reach an agreement with Putin, although it is a little hard to see what, at this point, he has to offer.

In contrast, Obama had to cancel his scheduled meeting with Philippine President Rodrigo Détente after that leader blasted Obama for criticizing his government’s war against Philippine drug dealers.

President Obama canceled a meeting with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte Monday, after the Filipino leader publicly swore while warning him not to raise questions about alleged death squad operations in his country against suspected drug dealers.

Earlier in the day, during a news conference before leaving the Philippines for Laos, where both men are to attend a summit of Southeast Asian leaders, Duterte had said that if Obama were to raise the issue during their scheduled meeting, “son of a bitch, I will swear at you.”

I haven’t heard the original Spanish, but other news sources say that Duterte said “son of a whore.”

He is a leader of a sovereign country and is answerable only to the Filipino people, Duterte said, and Obama must be respectful.

At the G20, Obama seemed determined to offend everyone, including his least favorite nation, Great Britain. He repeated his threat that Britain, having voted to leave the EU, would go to the back of the line when it comes to trade agreements with the U.S. But Brexit leaders weren’t buying it.

[A]t the G20 conference in China [Obama] appeared with the new Prime Minister Theresa May, and openly said that the 17 million who backed Brexit were wrong.

But Iain Duncan Smith, the former Conservative leader, said of Mr Obama’s comments: “Who cares what he says? He’s going. Bye bye.”

He told The Sun: “All the congressmen and senators I’ve spoken to have all said ‘When you’re ready to do a trade deal, we’ll step up to the plate’. We’re both free traders, it will take one or two years.

“The only trade deal the US has in train at the moment is TTIP, and everyone is saying that is dead. Congress won’t ratify it as they would have to make too many compromises to please the EU.

“It’s [Obama’s] vanity project. The truth is, no one really cares what he says.”

And Jacob Rees-Mogg, another Eurosceptic Tory MP, added: “Fortunately, he is yesterday’s man and will no longer be President early next year.

“The US is the UK’s single most important partner, and as far as I can see the EU-US trade deal is dead in the water.

“He’s putting a corpse ahead of the United States’ most loyal ally.

“These comments tell us all we need to know about how President Obama has never been a friend of ours.”

The “corpse” would be the EU.

Of course, the contempt that world leaders are expressing toward Barack Obama is partly the result of his lame duck status. But it is more than that: he is a widely detested lame duck, viewed by most as both arrogant and unreliable.

Remember the days when Obama promised us a smart foreign policy? Instead, he has thrown away our hard-fought victory in Iraq, strengthened Iran’s mullahs in a quixotic effort to form an alliance with them, and alienated our staunchest allies, like Great Britain and Israel, while abandoning others, like the Sunni Gulf States, all while accomplishing nothing. Small wonder that as he prepares to leave office, the predominant reaction around the world is, good riddance.

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