Obama Foreign Policy

The ambassador from hell

Featured image Samantha Power is President Obama’s handpicked ambassador of the United States to the United Nations. She made her name as the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book “A Problem From Hell”: America and the Age of Genocide. The book decries the indifference of American foreign policy to modern mass murder up to and including the monstrosities committed in Kosovo and Rwanda and so on. I thought that Power’s book failed »

An axis of three or four?

Featured image Ryan Crocker was the U.S. ambassador to Iraq during the surge of 2007. Crocker’s diplomacy played a substantial role in the success of the surge. Only the president who ordered it and general who conceived and carried at out deserve more credit, in my opinion. A few days ago, Crocker spoke to a group at the Atlantic Council. C-SPAN covered the event. Crocker said that during his recent visit to »

For Obama, trash talk is cheap

Featured image Given the number of times Vladimir Putin has rubbed President Obama’s face in it, one shouldn’t be surprised to see Obama talk trash about the Russia strong man. Today, at his press conference, the president claimed to have gotten the better of Putin in Syria — adding, with equal doses of condescension and chutzpah, that he takes no pleasure in it. According to Obama, Putin now finds himself in a »

Does the “cessation of hostilities” in Syria provide Russia a win-win?

Featured image The U.S. and Russia have agreed to a “cessation of hostilities” Syria. The cessation won’t begin for about a week, but there supposedly will be immediate humanitarian access to desperately besieged areas of Syria. Before discussing this agreement, it’s worth looking at the current humanitarian, military, and political disaster in Syria, and to ask how it came about. The disaster currently is most clearly manifested in Aleppo, an ancient city »

The crying game

Featured image We still don’t know what really happened when the Iranians took two riverine Navy boats into their custody last month. We know that the boats were said to have been traveling from Bahrain to Kuwait when they lost their way, but some have their doubts about that. FOX News recalls the background here if you need a refresher. We know that the Iranians humiliated the sailors by disseminating images of »

The Super Bowl Ad You Didn’t See

Featured image I understand that Jeb Bush ran an ad on the Super Bowl yesterday. If so, I missed it, like much else. I was multitasking. I doubt that the ad will do much to salvage Jeb’s flailing campaign. But when you have lots of money and little popular support, I guess you have to do something. Why not the Super Bowl? Michael Ramirez offers the Super Bowl ad you didn’t see: »

Why Did Support for Israel Become a Partisan Issue?

Featured image Historically, Americans have strongly supported the State of Israel. For a considerable time, that support was bipartisan, much as opposition to Communism was a bipartisan consensus for most of the Cold War era. At one time, sympathy for Israel may even have been more widespread among Democrats than Republicans. But in recent years, the parties have diverged sharply on the Mideast conflict. This Gallup chart shows the progression: Currently, fewer »

Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Signed to Little Fanfare. Here’s Why

Featured image The Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement was signed yesterday in Auckland, New Zealand. The administration claims it will boost America’s economy, but many are skeptical. Senator Jeff Sessions released a statement that said, in part: 7,000 miles away, the President’s trade representative just quietly signed a massive, 5,544 page trade deal, with little fanfare from its supporters. Only months ago Congress voted to “fast-track” this deal, despite not knowing its contents. »

Obama Made a Terrible Deal With Cuba, Too

Featured image The Washington Post editorial board documents the pathetic failure of the Obama administration’s Cuba policy under the bleak headline: “Failure In Cuba.” Whether it is a failure, of course, depends on what you think Obama was trying to achieve. President Obama’s opening to Cuba seems to be failing to live up to its declared goals. When the end to a half-century of hostility was announced in December 2014, the proclaimed »

Are the dark ages over?

Featured image President Obama’s efforts to ally the United States with the Islamic Republic of Iran is a grave matter, eventuating in the bizarre non-agreement agreement funding and facilitating Iran’s nuclear program. The Islamic Republic of Iran is ruled by an extraordinarily evil regime that avails itself of no tact or subtlety in the expression of its malign intentions. At the same time, it remains the leading state sponsor of terrorism and »

Meanwhile in Syria

Featured image Who’s winning in Iowa? That’s the question of the moment. But it’s also pertinent to ask who’s winning in Syria. The answer is the very bad guys. Which very bad guys? It depends on the part of Syria in question. In the east, ISIS seems to be winning, happy talk from the administration notwithstanding. The Washington Post reports that ISIS is intensifying its siege against President Bashar al-Assad’s last stronghold »

Rallying to Rubio on Iranian Hostage Taking

Featured image Marco Rubio is taking fire from the usual “fact checkers” for his comment over the weekend that Iran released our 52 hostages on January 20, 1981 as soon as Ronald Reagan took office because Iran perceived that America was “no longer under the command of someone weak.” Politifact huffs: We flagged Rubio’s comment as a misleading framing of history. Reagan’s inauguration in 1981 may have coincided with the release of »

How Obama’s prisoner swap facilitates Iran’s quest to prop up Assad

Featured image Josh Rogin at Bloomberg reports that two Iranian beneficiaries of the recent prisoner swap between the U.S. and Iran were sanctioned for funneling weapons to the Bashar al-Assad regime and Hezbollah in Syria. Rogin explains: For years, Iran’s privately-owned Mahan Air has been using its planes to bring soldiers and arms directly to the Syrian military and the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah by flying them from Tehran to Damascus, according »

Barack Obama and the Hall of Fame of Straw Men

Featured image Barack Obama is famous for the false choice: time after time, he posits only two alternatives, one of which is his preferred course while the other option is an obvious straw man, sometimes a course that has never been advocated by anyone. Today’s statement on the release of four prisoners by Iran (in exchange for our release of captured Iranians) is a classic of the genre. Obama began by describing »

A note on the hostage deal

Featured image Reader Don Burden writes to comment on one of the convicted Iranians released by the Obama administration in exchange for the four or five American hostages who are returning home. Mr. Burden writes, he says, because “this is something I have a lot of personal knowledge about” as a result of business litigation his software company is pursuing. Mr. Burden’s note seems to me to add an important dimension missing »

The U.S-Iran prisoner swap — another bad deal, but not scandalous

Featured image Iran and the U.S. have swapped prisoners. The mullahs reportedly have released four of our guys including Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian. We reportedly have released seven of theirs. Swapping prisoners is something a nation occasionally does with its enemies. I think it’s almost unheard between non-enemy nations or entities. Sometimes, prisoner swaps are scandalous. Releasing terrorists in exchange for a deserter like Bowe Bergdal is an example. So, in »

Lies of Guantanamo

Featured image In the Age of Obama, we are living by lies. Prevarication seems to be the operative principle. President Obama’s declared goal of emptying our detention facility at Guantanamo Bay is supported by many lies, including one he reiterated during his State of the Union remarks earlier this week. According to Obama, Guantanamo is a recruiting tool for terrorists. However, Obama is more of a recruiting tool than Guantanamo. Senator Tom »