Obama Foreign Policy

Iran goes missing

Featured image Appearing on Greta Van Susteren’s FOX News show last night, Catherine Herridge and John Bolton followed up on the disappearance of Iran and Hezbollah from the list of terror threats 2015 Worldwide Threat Assessment of the Intelligence Community issued by the Director of National Intelligence (video below, also posted here along with a partial transcript). I believe the disappearance was first reported here by the Times of Israel. Ambassador Bolton »

Netanyahu’s victory

Featured image I don’t profess any insight into Benjamin Netanyahu’s victory in the Israeli elections yesterday. He will in all likelihood become Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, exceeding the time in office of David Ben-Gurion, and his new term, when he assembles the coalition he needs to proceed, should give him political life after Obama. As John Podhoretz puts it in his New York Post column this morning: “He gambled his entire career »

Why did Netanyahu win?

Featured image Benjamin Netanyahu has declared victory in the Israeli Knesset elections. The opposition claims the declaration is premature and, like Netanyahu, its candidate is talking about forming a government. Assuming that Netanyahu and his Likud party have triumphed, the question is why. I’ll leave to Israeli analysts to provide a definitive answer if they can. My suspicion is that Netanyahu owes his victory in no small part to President Obama. From »

Bill Kristol defends the Cotton letter

Featured image Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol appeared on C-SPAN yesterday morning to talk about his mordant editorial “The party of the furrowed brow” and to take calls from viewers. C-SPAN host Paul Orgel began by asking Bill to explicate the editorial. As it turned out, Bill talked more than anything else about the letter that Senator Cotton drafted to explain relevant American constitutional principles to the Supreme Leader and his minions. »

Of fatuity and fatwas

Featured image President Obama’s has courted the Islamic Republic of Iran since the first days of his presidency. In Obama’s mind, a “path” exists, in Obama’s mind, for this nation to be “a very successful regional power.” The charitable interpretation is that Obama does not understand the nature of the Iranian regime. He does not understand that Iran is a revolutionary power. He thinks it can can coddled and conciliated into normality »

Obama-Kerry magical thinking, then and now

Featured image Secretary of State John Kerry says he’s willing to talk with Syrian president Assad in the hope of reaching an agreement to end Syria’s civil war. “We have to negotiate in the end,” said Kerry. “What we’re pushing for is to get him to come and do that, and it may require that there be increased pressure on him of various kinds.” Kerry is always in favor of negotiating, and »

Kerry huffs and puffs

Featured image John Kerry appeared on Face the Nation this morning in a prerecorded interview with Margaret Brennan (video below). Kerry huffed and puffed about the letter drafted by Senator Cotton about the constitutional principles applicable to the deal in process with Iran. There is a certain sympathetic logic to Brennan’s otherwise insane question: “Are you going to apologize [to Iran} for this letter?” Kerry indignantly responds that he will not apologize »

Tom Cotton defends his letter

Featured image Senator Tom Cotton appeared on Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer this morning (video below). Schieffer grilled and derided Senator Cotton about the letter he drafted setting forth the basic constitutional principles applicable to the deal in process with Iran. Senator Cotton’s remarks should now be viewed in the context of Obama chief of staff Dennis McDonough’s letter last night to Senator Corker, of which Schieffer seemed not to be »

Dennis McDonough explains

Featured image Our attention should remain riveted on President Obama’s deal in process with Iran. It will put Iran on a path to the development of nuclear weapons to be mounted on Iran’s intercontinental ballistic missiles. It will undo the sanctions regime intended to prevent this outcome. And in the meantime it will contribute financing to Iran’s exploits as the world’s foremost state sponsor of terrorism, not to mention the regime’s genocidal »

Saudi Arabia Sees the Handwriting on the Wall

Featured image The Obama administration insists that it is negotiating an agreement with Iran that will prevent that country from acquiring nuclear weapons–for a while, anyway. Critics of the negotiations, as reflected in the interim agreement already reached and in news reports of the discussions in progress, suspect that the deal Obama has in mind will facilitate, not prevent, a nuclear Iran. As reported, the deal will sunset in ten years, leaving »

Kerry reassures Iran’s Supreme Leader [With Observation By John]

Featured image The letter drafted by Senator Tom Cotton sets forth basic constitutional principles applicable to the executive agreement into which President Obama will enter with Iran. The letter continues to reverberate. Speaking in Egypt on his way to work more on the deal, Secretary of State Kerry purported to take issue with the letter. Jay Solomon reports in today’s Wall Street Journal (the article is accessible here via Google): Secretary of »

The UN angle [updated] [with comment by Paul]

Featured image Reuters has broken an important story on the conniving to convert President Obama’s deal in process with Iran from an executive agreement into some compulsory form of international law. Reuters reports: Major world powers have begun talks about a United Nations Security Council resolution to lift U.N. sanctions on Iran if a nuclear agreement is struck with Tehran, a step that could make it harder for the U.S. Congress to »

Another Blast from the Past: When Biden Teamed up With Helms

Featured image I missed Marc Thiessen’s Washington Post column a couple days ago recalling the time a senator named Joe Biden . . . hmmm, that name seems familiar, doesn’t it?—teamed up with Sen. Jesse Helms (!!!) to interpose themselves in the Clinton Administration’s diplomacy regarding the UN’s International Criminal Court: Biden also surely remembers how in 1998, when the Clinton administration was negotiating a U.N. treaty to create an International Criminal »

How Barack Obama Undercut Bush Administration’s Nuclear Negotiations With Iran

Featured image In 2008, the Bush administration, along with the “six powers,” was negotiating with Iran concerning that country’s nuclear arms program. The Bush administration’s objective was to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. On July 20, 2008, the New York Times headlined: “Nuclear Talks With Iran End in a Deadlock.” What caused the talks to founder? The Times explained: Iran responded with a written document that failed to address the main »

Khameni goes Democrat on the letter

Featured image Is Islamic Republic of Iran Supreme Leader Khameni a “hard-liner” in the eyes of Barack Obama, or one of the good guys at the top of the world’s foremost sponsor of terrorism? I’m not clear on that. Maybe some inquiring reporter can take a run at getting an answer from Josh Earnest at a White House press briefing this week. The AP reports that Ayatollah Khameni has now commented on »

Victory in Tikrit, but should we rejoice?

Featured image Iraqi forces have swept into Tikrit and appear poised to push the Islamic State (ISIS) out of Saddam Hussein’s old hometown. Reportedly, the Iraqi forces have retaken nearly all of the city, though ISIS is still resisting in some areas. By “Iraqi forces,” I mean government troops, a small number of Sunni tribesman, and (above all) Shiite militias directed by Qassem Suleimani, head of the Iranian Quds Force, and bolstered »

John Kerry Goes Ballistic Over Senate Letter

Featured image John Kerry testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee this morning on the proposed authorization for the use of military force against ISIS. Along the way, a Democratic member of the committee gave Kerry the opportunity to unleash a prepared tirade against the now-famous open letter that has been signed by 47 Senate Republicans. The letter is here. It is brief and seemingly non-controversial. It is worth reading the letter »