The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Barack Obama has little credibility when it comes to his foreign policy decisions in the Middle East (and much of the rest of the world as well). Over the past six years, we have seen bad decision after bad decision leading to disastrous outcomes. Even Thomas Friedman, a staunch Obama supporter, has finally dropped his partisan slant and speaks the "grim" truth:
If it seems as though we have only bad choices in the Middle East today and nothing seems to work, there is a reason: Because past is prologue, and the past has carved so much scar tissue into that landscape that it’s hard to see anything healthy or beautiful growing out of it anytime soon. Sorry to be so grim.
Barack Obama is not solely responsible for what we're currently seeing in the Middle East, but he has had a significant part to play in the current chaos. In decision after bad decision, he has projected indecisiveness, weakness, and incompetence in a region that responds only to decisiveness and strength.

That's what makes his headlong push to cut a deal that will allow a nuclear Iran even more frightening. What is there in his past decisions and actions in the region that would make any trust him to act decisively and with strength in this situation? The answer: zero, nada, zilch.

Richard Fernandez adds to the gloom commenting first on Friedman and then on Obama:
We have come a long way from Hope and Change. In fact [Thomas] Friedman’s catalog of woes isn’t the half of it. Obama has managed the amazing feat of losing everything and gaining nothing and being despised by every side to boot. Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Iran, the Palestinians, Hezbollah-dominated Lebanon, Turkey, Libya — and what used to be called Yemen — have learned one searing lesson. There are people who are all hat and no cattle.

And now he’s managed the impossible. He’s actually on the verge of an open breach with Israel. There’s Russia and China on the periphery, circling like vultures, but let’s leave them out of the reckoning for the moment because if Friedman hasn’t ruined your morning, I’m not about to.

From a psychological point of view the president has to double down on Netanyahu — hurt him somehow — if only to demonstrate to anyone still interested, perhaps even to himself, that he can bite with his gums in the absence of teeth. But it’s pointless. Even Obama’s revenge is pointless. None of his proposed sanctions against Israel will move the needle in any direction that matters.

As I pointed out yesterday, the president has no winning hand left. He doesn’t even have the semblance of a game. It’s over.
Grim indeed.