It would be an understatement to say that I was decidedly irked at Sens. John McCain, Lindsay Graham and others of their caliber making the rounds of television news shows this week bemoaning President Obama’s weakness on foreign policy as the cause for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Equally irksome was their bastardization of conservatives’ talking points pertaining to the issue; i.e., extolling the wisdom of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney in their admonitions to beware Russia in 2008 and 2012, respectively.
Palin and Romney were right, to be sure, but it is the GOP leaders’ hypocritical theatrics that gall. It has not been Obama’s weakness that is to blame for Putin’s excursion into the Crimean Peninsula, it is Obama having purposefully telegraphed weakness – in the same way he has telegraphed weakness in his foreign policy overall, thereby emboldening both enemies and potential enemies alike.
What’s the difference? The difference is huge. Jimmy Carter was a foreign-policy bungler. He was weak because he had a delusional overview of geopolitics and his significance as a world leader. Barack Obama has advanced similar policies, but this is not because of miscalculation; it is because of his desire – essentially a lifelong desire – to diminish the United States’ status as a superpower.
Obviously, Obama does not care if his detractors declare that he is weak or inept at foreign policy, any more than he cares if they believe he is a poor economic manager or leader on domestic issues. His policies, which have been detrimental to America on every front – economic stability, national security, domestic tranquility, foreign policy – are the sabotage of an enemy operative, not the careless acts of a ham-handed politician.