Article 2 of the U.S. Constitution defines the powers granted to the executive branch, and it is left to the president to competently perform his or her duties. Generally speaking, Article 2 can be broken down into seven roles/responsibilities assigned to the executive branch of our federal government.
As I pointed out in my column last week, the Obama administration’s failure in two of those responsibilities, as chief executive and chief of state, have been clearly demonstrated in his inability to run an ethical, efficient and transparent executive branch. Scandals and broken promises are nothing new in politics, but President Obama has taken it to a new high (or low, depending on your point of view). Fifty-four percent of the American people now believe that Obama “cannot lead and get the job done.” The American morale has reached an all-time low.
The totality of failure of the Obama administration cannot rest alone in his failure as our chief executive or chief of state, which leads us to the next area of failure, as chief diplomat and commander-in-chief. The executive branch is the branch that is primarily responsible for foreign relations and use of the military in times of crisis. Some would believe these are separate governing entities, while many believe they are companions to each other, each relying on the other to function in the best interest of the United States of America. One look at the world today proves there can be no doubt that the Obama administration has made the world a far more dangerous place, both from Obama’s inaction and often misguided actions.
In recent polls, more than 55 percent (RCP average) of the American people know Obama’s foreign policy is a failure. As a reminder, Obama was not seen to be strong on foreign policy when he was running for office (for which he was strongly criticized by both Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden), and Obama has never been able to sustain positive approval ratings regarding his handling of foreign matters. Only die-hard ideological partisans believe America’s standing in the world is adequate, and that the world is safer because of Obama’s approach to foreign policy.
It is important to reiterate that Obama inherited nothing; he sought the job of president and freely accepted the task at hand. The litany of Obama’s failures is long and shocking as you list them:
Obama’s failed “reset” of our relationships with Russia.
Obama’s failed effort to improve our standing with the Muslim world with his now forgotten Cairo speech.
Obama’s ill-advised and failed effort to intercede in Europe’s economic crisis (because God knows Obama has worked miracles with the U.S. economy).
His failure to control North Korea, which bombed the sovereign nation of South Korea (a peaceful ally of the U.S.).
Drawing, then redrawing, before finally ignoring the “red line” with Syria, then trusting Russia to lead the peace efforts, all of which have resulted in an escalation of deaths.
Boasting that al-Qaeda was “on the path to defeat” and “decimated,” all while our embassy in Libya was attacked and four brave Americans were slaughtered. The events in Libya and Syria eventually giving rise to an al-Qaeda offshoot, ISIS, which is well on its way to creating a new Islamic state from captured Iraqi and Syrian territory. The same Iraq that Obama claimed to win the war, only to lose the peace. Ignoring the Iranian people during their uprising for liberty. Withdrawing military support to valuable allies Poland and the Czech Republic. Falsely claiming to slow Iran’s development of nuclear weapons.
Obama’s foreign intelligence services have missed or underestimated almost every major world event (Syria, Libya, Crimea, Iran, the rise of ISIS). He has alienated world leaders such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Brazilian President Dilma Vana Rousseff and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. While at the same time whispering in the ear of then Russian President Dmitry Medvedev: “This is my last election. After my election, I have more flexibility,” as it relates to vital weapons treaties. Careless whispers, idle threats and mistreating our allies are not an effective foreign policy; they are the actions of an ineffective leader.
This is but a sampling of the Obama administration’s foreign failures. The full list is too long to publish in one sitting. Obama’s naive understanding of the world has not only made America less safe, it has created or influenced chaos across the globe. More frightening is that Obama appears comfortable in his administration’s incompetence. Looking back in history very few can recall a time in which America’s standing in the world was this low and the very safety of our country was in greater peril. This while our president sits comfortably numb.