Friday, May 20, 2011

Obama and the Middle East or Doubling Down with Br’er Rabbit.

Seems it was not that long ago that I warned that our involvement in “liberating” Libya was going to become a tar-baby for Obama’s foreign policy. Weren’t we told it would be a “matter of days not weeks” before the situation was resolved? Well here we are 60 days in and the President’s authority under the War Powers Act is set to expire and by law he must go before Congress to get further authorization to extend our military involvement. I’m sorry Mr. President you just issuing a statement that our involvement is now “open ended” doesn’t cut it with the law or the American People.

So just what is the President’s plan here? It might have been a plausible story at the start that the Libyan people overwhelmingly wanted to get rid of Kaddafi and his clan. That Kaddafi and his supporters are having a fair amount of success in holding the rebels at bay in spite of the application of US and NATO air power raises some serious questions of judgment about getting involved in the first place.

Does this administration honestly think that making speeches placating the Palestinians and calling for more uncounted billions of dollars in aid be sent to the Arab world is going to make up for bombing the snot out of civilians in Tripoli? Obama likes to present himself as an anti-colonialist but this sure looks like the early 20th century's Teddy Roosevelt “carrot and stick”, American neo-colonialism to me.

I can’t help but conclude that Obama is in so far over his head that all he has left is shooting from the lip, throwing stuff against the wall and hoping something will stick. It’s a pretty bad specter of a man and a nation that somewhere in the back of his mind he may have resigned himself to being a one term President and is more concerned with creating some sort of “Well I tried” legacy than with actually solving any real problems.

So with one fist firmly imbedded in the tar of Libya he swipes with the other at Assad in Syria and then jumps in with both feet into the Palestinian question. With all the chaos going on in the Middle East I don’t think any rational person could tell you what that part of the world will look like in six months from now never mind a year or two. So then trying to create a new policy initiative built not just on shifting sands but in the middle of a blinding sandstorm, is either the epitome of narcissist arrogance or burgeoning ignorance or more likely the combination of the two. Or maybe he’s getting so much smoke blown up his backside by his so-called advisors that he’s blinded by the excess coming out his ears and can’t see he’s being played for a fool and the fall guy for an even more conflagrational war.

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