Having mulled over President Obama’s announcement of the troop withdrawl from Iraq, one wonders what his foreign policy is and how this move fits into his strategic vision. Yes, many people say he lacks strategic vision because they assume a President would use that vision to protect the country and reduce the risks it faces. And there will always be debate about how to achieve that, but what if a President does not start with that assumption?
The timing of the announcement is obviously political, but is it also more? Maybe President Obama actually has a strategic vision, but one that is outside the “mainstream” to use that tired old phrase.
Think about President Obama’s foreign policy decisions. Many decisions offer the opportunity to support and speak out for freedom or to do the opposite and strengthen regimes and those who would do us harm. Admittedly, lots of decsions do involve difficult choices, but the leader of the free world should know what side to come down on. (An interesting aside….does President Obama even think of himself as leader of the free world?)
Here is my concern. What is the outcome of President Obama’s decisions? It seems that the results always strengthen our enemies. Look at Egypt. Yes, Mubarak was ruthless. Will the Muslim Brotherhood be better? Look at Libya. Yes, Qadaffi was ruthless. Will the rebels be better? Yet in both cases President Obama supported “regime change” (and in Libya we assured it with NATO action). Maybe he did not realize that worse regimes could come into power or he did not care, or perhaps, and most worrisome, maybe that was the point all along. Maybe that is President Obama’s strategic vision after all. I’ll take W’s strategery over this any day