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The White House Doesn’t Have a Game Plan

The White House Doesn’t Have a Game Plan

It’s just not fun anymore to critique the Obama administration’s foreign policy — it’s like picking on the Chicago Cubs. Except the Cubs aren’t consistently bad and their mistakes haven’t accrued lasting damage to our country. 

Remember when the president frequented the trope of the Bush administration driving the country into a ditch? Sorry, but the Obama administration has driven American foreign policy Thelma-and-Louise-style off a cliff. It will take dramatic changes from a new administration to restore credibility in American judgment and competence.

There are three fundamental mistakes in the Obama White House’s (for it is there that all national security policies are made in this administration) understanding of the world. The first is that if the United States steps back, other states will step forward and undertake the work we would like to have done. The second is that big ideas are a hindrance to managing international crises — and they don’t even bother to ask the higher-order question: "Why is this happening?" The third, (which ought to be impossible given the second misconception) is the sublime confidence to believe they know better than the countries immediately affected by crises.

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