Obama Foreign Policy

Arab states not eager to follow feckless Obama

Featured image So now President Obama wants to organize a coalition to take on ISIS, the group whose rise he ignored on the theory that it was the terrorist “jayvee.” Arab states — notably Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Egypt, Jordan — and Turkey are to be key members of the coalition. Obama assigns these states primary responsibility for mobilizing Sunni communities in Iraq and Syria against ISIS. Presumably, Obama »

You cannot be Syrious!

Featured image Paul Mirengoff has done the hard work and dissected the substance of President Obama’s speech on ISIS last night. John commented here and Steve here. The White House has now posted a transcript of the speech along with the video below. My impression was that Obama was trying to impersonate a serious man, though he has demonstrated spectacular misjudgment and neglect in his approach to ISIS. The misjudgment or neglect »

Foreign Policy Mulligan

Featured image John and Paul are both working on reactions to Obama’s speech as I type–and maybe we’ll actually have the first ever Power Line competition to post first on Obama’s latest divot, I mean pivot, to jobs in a speech about foreign policy.  What was that about?  (Actually I see John already beat me to it.  Hey Scott: Care to play too, or is it past your bedtime?) Someone emailed before »

More Observations on Obama’s Speech

Featured image Shortly, Paul will note the most important problems with President Obama’s speech tonight. In the meantime, here are a few secondary observations: 1) Obama proclaimed the existence of an international coalition to combat ISIS: I can announce that America will lead a broad coalition to roll back this terrorist threat. And again: And in each of these four parts of our strategy, America will be joined by a broad coalition »

ISIS: What Would Churchill Do?

Featured image Power Line has come into possession of a transcript of a recent telephone conversation between President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron, who, as everyone knows, has been way out in front of Obama in judging the seriousness of the problem posed by the rise of ISIS. Obama: Hey Dave, it’s Barry. How you likin’ those groovy tunes on that iPod I gave you at the G-8? Cameron: Barry! »

“Obama to Deepen America’s Military Role In Mideast”

Featured image That Associated Press headline tells you pretty much all you need to know about the utter collapse of the Obama administration’s foreign policy. It was Obama’s uncompromising opposition to military action in the Middle East, particularly Iraq, that won him the presidential nomination six years ago. Now, he has no choice but to deal with reality: In a major reversal, President Barack Obama is moving to deepen the U.S. military »

Obama tries to catch up with the parade

Featured image The usual purpose of an address like the one President Obama will deliver tonight regarding ISIS is to rally support for military action by explaining to the citizenry why such action is required. But Obama will flip that script tonight, as he tries to demonstrate that his awareness of ISIS’s threat matches that of the citizenry. Recent events, which culminated in the beheadings of two Americans, have convinced the public »

Obama to Address Nation on ISIS: Why Watch?

Featured image Tonight at 9 p.m. Eastern, President Obama will deliver a television speech on ISIS. He will assure us that he has had a strategy all along, and will tell us what it is. He will also explain why leaving Iraq was a brilliant idea. Yesterday, White House spokesman Josh Earnest gave the press corps a preview of what to expect. Which led Major Garrett to ask a logical question: [I]f »

A word from Dick Cheney

Featured image The Daily Beast’s Ben Jacobs maintains the required attitude of annoyance with, if not hostility to, Dick Cheney as he reports on Cheney’s meeting with House Republicans behind closed doors yesterday. Anticipating Obama’s speech on the ISIS threat tonight, Cheney recalled Obama’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood going back to the first days of the Obama administration in 2009. Has anybody here read The Looming Tower? To borrow Marxist terminology, »

Obama’s “organizing” fantasy

Featured image President Obama has improved upon his statement of the American objective regarding ISIS. He now says that he intends to “degrade and destroy” this barbaric outfit, not merely to convert it into a “manageable problem.” However, Obama has not retracted, or even “walked back,” his statement about how to deal with ISIS. He has consistently taken the position that “what we’ve got to do is make sure that we are »

Obama Goes on Meet the Press, Reality Fails to Intrude

Featured image President Obama appeared on Meet the Press this morning with new host Chuck Todd. The conversation focused primarily on ISIS, Iraq and Syria. Much could be said about Obama’s comments, but what struck me most was how disassociated from reality Obama appears to be–both when he defends his own record, and when he talks about foreign policy. Obama repeated the spin, first floated by White House spokesman Josh Earnest, that »

Psaki makes me psick

Featured image State Department spokesman Jen Psaki makes me psick. If you read P.G. Wodehouse, you know the “P” in her name is silent, as in “phthisis,” “psychic” and “ptarmigan” (as Wodehouse’s Psmith explains). And Psaki’s colleague Marie Harf makes me barf. Together Psaki and Harf give the catastrophic foreign policy of the Obama administration a lighter than air, Valley Girl kind of feel. It’s a novel use of expressive form. Paul »

About those lightweight Team Obama spokespersons

Featured image Bill O’Reilly came under criticism from the Obama administration this week for stating that Jen Psaki, spokesperson for the State Department, “looks way out of her depth” and that “just the way she delivers, she doesn’t look like she has the gravitas for the job.” The criticism was delivered by Psaki’s deputy, Marie Harf, who claimed that O’Reilly’s comments are sexist because she doesn’t “actually [doesn't] think [he] would ever »

Surviving an ISIS massacre

Featured image The New York Times produced the video below with credits to Mike Shum, Greg Campbell, Adam B. Ellick and Mona El-Naggar earlier this week. They report: “ISIS massacred hundreds of Iraqi military recruits in June. Ali Hussein Kadhim survived. This is his improbable story.” They add the warning: “Includes graphic images.” The related Times story on the events depicted is Tim Arango’s “Escaping death in northern Iraq.” I thought readers »

On third try, Obama still flubs it on ISIS

Featured image Barack Obama has always been good with words, but he’s not good enough to give coherence to his ramshackle foreign policy. Not surprisingly words have failed the president (or, to be more accurate, the president has failed words) most conspicuously when it comes to the aspect of his policy that’s in greatest disarray — his policy regarding terrorism. First, Obama admitted that he didn’t have a strategy for dealing with »

Why do they join the jihad?

Featured image It sounds like a complicated question, but Michael Ledeen nails it with six words: because it gives meaning to life. It’s a commonplace to anyone who’s studied the rise of fascism, of which Islamofascism is the most recent variety. The main problem with democratic capitalism is that it’s so successful, and therefore very boring. A generation or two of European intellectuals bemoaned the great triumph of science and industry, which »

Parents of Navy SEAL Ask Obama to Resign

Featured image Absolute moral authority: you don’t hear that phrase much anymore, do you? If this letter by Billy and Karen Vaughn to President Obama had been addressed to George W. Bush, it would have led every news broadcast. So far, though, neither the New York Times, the Washington Post nor the Associated Press has mentioned it. Here it is, in its entirety: After finally choosing to view the barbaric, on-camera beheading »