India has now joined the list of U.S. allies receiving shabby treatment from the Obama administration. Actually, the shabby treatment arguably has been ongoing — despite their globe-trotting, neither President Obama nor Secretary of State Clinton bothered to visit our giant and increasingly important ally in the sub-continent during the first six months of the administration.
Now, Clinton has finally visited India, but the government probably wishes she had stayed home. For Clinton used the visit to attempt to pressure India to accept binding limits on carbon emissions. Clinton made this effort despite the fact that (1) India’s carbon emissions are among the lowest in the world on a per capita basis and (2) its economy has been been wracked by the global financial crisis.
India flatly rejected Clinton’s overture, as it well it should have.
Abe Greenwald points out, that this latest instance of U.S. “meddling” illustrates the major shortcomings of Obama’s foreign policy: (1) the administration takes our allies for granted, (2) it confuses its “gift of the gab” with an ability to persuade nations to act against their interests, and (3) it is simply arrogant.
In Greenwald’s words: “If the Obama administration bossed around our enemies with half the energy it puts into bossing around our friends, perhaps the planet wouldn’t look like a rogue nations’ free-for-all right now.”
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