And Obama Shrugged

ob2Since Obama took office, the Chinese have responded to his overtures of goodwill and appeasement with intensified aggression against the U.S.’s Asian allies and against U.S. warships.  In 2012 they seized the Scarborough Shoal from the Philippines and Obama shrugged.

China took that shrug as a sign of weakness so now they are threatening the Second Thomas Shoal as well as Japan’s control over the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea.  Their recent application of its Air-Defense identification Zone to include Japanese and South Korean airspace is a hostile act, not only against those countries, but also against the principle of freedom of maritime navigation, which America has been defending for more than two centuries.

In a show of strength Obama resorted to placating and China responded with contempt.  Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, during his visit to China’s National Defense University, was harangued for the US’s support for the Philippines and Japan and for opposition to Chinese unilateral seizure of island chains and assertions of rights over other countries airspace and international waterways.

In responses to Russia’s annexation of Crimea and its act of aggression against Ukraine, Obama shrugged twice.    Rather than send NATO forces and arm Ukrainian forces with defensive weapons, we sent food to Ukraine and an unarmed warship to the Black Sea.

Clearly unimpressed by Obama’s shrug, the Russians overflew and shadowed a US naval ship, knowing that Obama was unlikely to respond.  This sent a signal to Ukraine and other US allies that they cannot trust the US to protect them from the Russians.

In the Middle East, it is not only the US’s obsessive approach to the Palestinian conflict with Israel that lies in shambles.  The entire US alliance system and the Obama administration’s other signature initiatives have also collapsed.  Obama’s aggressive policy in Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere of killing al-Qaeda operatives by drone was ended in December 2013 after he endured modest criticism when a drone in Yemen inadvertently hit a wedding party.   Al-Qaeda noticed and is now flaunting its immunity from US attack.  A Jihadist website featured an al-Qaeda video showing hundreds of terrorists in Yemen meeting openly with the group’s second in command, Nasir al-Wuhayshi, who threatened the US directly saying, “we must eliminate the cross,” and explaining that “the bearer of the cross is America.”

Obama staked his reputation on his radical policy of engaging Iran on their nuclear weapons program.  He claims that by allowing Iran to undertake some nuclear activities  he can convince the mullahs to shelve their nuclear weapons program.   In a recent interview, Iran’s nuclear chief Ali Akhbar Salehi insisted that Iran has the right to enrich uranium to 90% to build nuclear bombs.  And thanks to the Obama and John Kerry and their  “interim nuclear deal” the Iranian economy is on the mend.  Ignoring this interim deal, which limited Iran’s oil exports to a million barrels a day, the International Energy Agency in February reported that Iran’s daily oil exports rose to 1.65 million barrels a day, the highest since June 2012.

Unable to shrug this off, the Obama administration is now in denial mode.  While once claiming the goal of the nuclear talks was to ensure that Iran would remain years away from acquiring nuclear weapons, Secretary of State John Kerry is now claiming that the US would suffice with a situation in which Iran is but 6 months away from acquiring nuclear weapons.   In other words, the  Obama and Kerry have now defined failure as success.

And let’s not forget Syria.  Only last September Obama claimed he made history when he coupled with Russia to convince Assad to surrender his chemical weapons arsenal.  A little over six months later, not only is Syria behind schedule for abiding by the ‘agreement,’ Assad is being accused of using those chemical weapons against opposition forces and civilians.

The problem is not limited to Obama and his leftist ilk, their delusional view that the US will suffer no consequences for its consistent record of failure and defeat is shared by a growing chorus of so-called conservatives like Rand Paul, Pat Buchanan, and Ted Cruz.

Obama’s weak foreign policy, or lack thereof, is causing allies like Japan, South Korea and Saudi Arabia to reconsider their options on the nuclear front.  Israeli officials are openly stating that they can no longer depend upon the US.

There is a direct correlation between the US elite’s preoccupation with social issues running the gamut from gay marriage to transgender bathrooms to a phony war against women, and America’s inability to recognize the growing threats to the global order or understand why Americans should care about the world at all.

And, there is a similarly direct correlation between the growing aggression of US foes and Obama’s decision to slash defense spending while allowing the US nuclear arsenal to become all but obsolete.

You can read The Disappearance of US Will by Caroline B. Glick in full at this link.

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