Foreign-Policy Failure

Obama’s foreign-policy decisions—from provoking Islamabad to two-timing Beijing to alienating Moscow—lack the strategic long-term thinking the U.S. needs. Hypocrisy and incoherence rule.

Issue: Sept-Oct 2011

PRESIDENT BARACK Obama is in many respects the opposite of Richard Nixon and George H. W. Bush, both foreign-policy presidents who subordinated their domestic ambitions to America’s national-security requirements. Moreover, where Obama has succeeded internationally, his successes have been largely tactical rather than strategic, reflecting the fact that he is fundamentally a domestic leader with a European-style socialist agenda but little or no foreign-policy vision. This lack of an international agenda is why the president may be called a pragmatist, but not a realist.

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