Patterico's Pontifications


President Pussyfoot

Filed under: International,Obama — DRJ @ 5:19 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Negative international reviews of President Obama’s foreign policies have reached flood stage, including the British defense secretary’s claim that Obama is responsible for “the decline in British public support for the war in Afghanistan.” And that’s not all:

“The President is “Obama the Impotent,” according to Steven Hill of the Guardian. The Economist calls Obama the “Pacific (and pussyfooting) president.” The Financial Times refers to “relations between the U.S. and Europe, which started the year of talks as allies, near breakdown.” The German magazine Der Spiegel accuses the president of being “dishonest with Europe” on the subject of climate change. Another withering piece in Der Spiegel, titled “Obama’s Nice Guy Act Gets Him Nowhere on the World Stage,” lists the instances in which Obama is being rolled. The Jerusalem Post puts it this way: “Everybody is saying no to the American president these days. And it’s not just that they’re saying no, it’s also the way they’re saying no.” “He talks too much,” a Saudi academic who had once been smitten with Barack Obama tells the Middle East scholar Fouad Ajami.”

American Presidents can dither and waffle all they want on domestic political policies but every Administration must project strong international leadership. For now, President Obama has become the American who talks too much and says nothing.


UPDATE: In the comments, Dana explains why this matters.

23 Responses to “President Pussyfoot”

  1. This is probably because he’s a dope-dreaming idiot and it’s becoming apparent.

    Kevin Murphy (805c5b)

  2. It is nice to know the 20 January inaugurated a new era in international relations, and that the U.S. is again a respected and beloved member of the Family of Nations.

    AD - RtR/OS! (eab8f3)

  3. The enormous goodwill that Obama’s election was met with hasn’t been leveraged into anything useful and tangible. Rather, our allies are now questioning America’s will, while our adversaries are becoming increasingly emboldened. The United States looks weak and uncertain. It’s “amateur hour at the White House,” according to Leslie Gelb, president emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations and a former official in the Carter administration. “Not only are things not getting fixed, they may be getting more broken,” according to Michael Hirsh at Newsweek.

    This certainly comes as no surprise to many of us and unfortunately confirms ar primary concern: an emboldened enemy. While the left was continually accusing us of racism because we voiced all along these very doubts and concerns of Obama’s indecision, waffling, dithering, and subservient bowing to enemies near and far, and making apologies for our country, the rest of the world was observing and forming their own judgments. Are they all racist, too? Is Leslie Golb and Newsweek now racist along with the rest of us? Or is common sense finally making a re-appearance as the romantic bubble has finally burst?

    The timing of this is so ironic in in light of the upcoming KSM trials in NYC, Iran’s dramatic nuclear expansion plans, Afghanistan, Pakistan – situations each that demand strong and decisive leadership – and with no apology to be found.

    Dana (e9ba20)

  4. How can they say these things about our AA Prez?

    highpockets (1b9a85)

  5. Just goes to show you how much respect and good will President Obama has generated by turning us away from the evil neoconservative stances of President Cheney Bush.

    The American Dana (474dfc)

  6. The enormous goodwill that Obama’s election was met with hasn’t been leveraged into anything useful and tangible.

    Question for the majority of the rest of the world:

    Do you feel stupid yet?

    Blacque Jacques Shellacque (76097c)

  7. Wait, hold everything – I thought that the election of BHO was supposed to make the whole world love us. Dang.

    It’s funny how no one respects a pushover, even when they think that’s what they want. It’s not surprising at all that Europe is terrified by the new and wussier America, especially with the Russian wolf howling once again at their back door.

    Why don’t more Americans understand that the Europeans bitch because they like to bitch, they bitch because they aren’t a global power any more and they miss that, they bitch because we are bigger. But they just bitch. They don’t mean it, they still want us to be their protector.

    The Arab world – they don’t respect anyone, why start with us?

    Vivian Louise (643333)

  8. Nice comment, Dana #3. I’ve added a link to it in an Update.

    DRJ (dee47d)

  9. Europe getting scared, the had to get out of America’s shadow, since our dear reader has no shadow.

    bill-tb (365bd9)

  10. When are we going to see evidence
    of the smart diplomacy and superior judgment that would return America to its position of respect in the world?

    JD (037e6f)

  11. WSJ has a necessary read that dovetails nicely with this post. Ironic that the only ones seemingly unaware of the unfolding criticism and doubt are those inside of the WH.

    The laws of gravity, the weight of history and of precedent, have caught up with the Obama presidency. We are beyond stirring speeches. The novelty of the Obama approach, and the Obama persona, has worn off. There is a whole American diplomatic tradition to draw upon—engagements made, wisdom acquired in the course of decades, and, yes, accounts to be settled with rogues and tyrannies. They might yet help this administration find its way out of a labyrinth of its own making.

    Dana (e9ba20)

  12. It appears mastery of the teleprompter can only take one so far.

    navyvet (c99bbf)

  13. It’s unfortunate that it cannot take Teh One! out-of-town, permanently.

    AD - RtR/OS! (eab8f3)

  14. Don’t forget misunderestimated strategery.

    Larry Reilly (45c8f2)

  15. Mawy, you’re way up past your bedtime. Did you get into your parent’s medicine cabinet again?

    Dmac (a964d5)

  16. Larry – I’m still waiting for the unicorns and Obama still hasn’t paid my damn mortgage. WTF?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  17. Hey Larry…. never thought I’d have said this, but “misunderestimated strategery” is looking like the superior foreign policy of the decade.
    Obama is a genius though. Clearly. Or was it a transparent genius?

    SteveG (97b6b9)

  18. There is a bright side. The Euroweenies are seeing how it is to get what you wished for. This is only 1/4 of the farce and they will be traveling to Bush’s ranch by next year. Except for the damage this is doing that will take decades to fix, like Carter and Iran, I could almost enjoy this.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  19. […] sooner did the international media let loose with withering criticism of President Obama, now the American media is tentatively piling […]

    Patterico's Pontifications » Politico: “7 Stories Barack Obama Doesn’t Want Told” (e4ab32)

  20. Obama’s been able to get where he is because he was never required to put on the Big Boy Pants and actually demonstrate that he could do the job. He’s gotten by on glittering generalities and pretty speeches riddled with the kind of self-involved self-affirmation that’s become a hallmark of every post-WW2 generation. “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for” sounds great, until you realize that 40 years of increasingly dumbed-down educational curricula have created a slothful, entitled, dim populace that lacks any sort of real initiative or innovation, and is largely incapable of accomplishing anything noteworthy outside of demanding goodies. This is the man’s first real job in his entire life, it’s one of a type that he’s never shown a capacity for being successful at in the past when the narrative isn’t treating him like a rock star, and now the chickens are coming home to roost in a floundering economy, a contentious healthcare reform debate, and a world leadership that views him as being way out of his league.

    Having the love of a bunch of dumb-truck college students can clearly get you the presidency, but it doesn’t make you a competent leader or executive, especially when roughly half the nation refuses to give you the celebrity treatment that’s gotten you to where you are in the first place.

    Another Chris (470967)

  21. Six months into office, some foreign country is going to cause us a crisis. Our decision to resolve the crisis won’t look right. But you’re going to have to trust us on this one, mmkay?

    John Hitchcock (3fd153)

  22. You know, Larry, for eight years the right had to suffer the slings and arrows of the press and the ever-so-smart inklings of your type every time Bush rolled over in bed and said “Dick” instead of “Laura.”

    So, now, you have the press, the House, the Senate and the Presidency and all you can come up with is:

    “Don’t forget misunderestimated strategery.”

    What’s the yiddish word? It begins with a “p.”

    Words fail. I think, maybe, Jesus wept, too.

    Ag80 (3d1543)

  23. #22: “pendejo”? it certainly fits both Larry and the First Incompetent….

    “schadenfreude” is a word i’m using a lot these days, and i’m sure i’m mispronouncing it, but we won that war, so i really don’t care. %-)

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

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