President Obama has two years left in his administration, so it is difficult to be overly optimistic, but I tend toward the view that he won’t or can’t be as destructive with domestic issues as he has been in his first six years because of the control of both houses of Congress by Republican majorities. Certainly, there is more damage to be done with his “pen and phone” and the Republicans can badly misplay their hand, as they have done from time to time, but I think the worst is behind us.
Foreign policy is a different matter. Because of the fecklessness and incompetence of this administration, there are reasons to believe that the next two years will be the most dangerous period since the end of the Cold War. There are any number of possible flash points, from Russia to China to ISIS to the revival of the Taliban in Afghanistan to North Korea to cyberwarfare from anywhere–you name it. But I believe with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Iran is the highest risk threat that we face. And this is true today primarily because of a combination of the messages of retreat and concession we have sent over the past six years and the choices we have made in dealing with Iran on the development of their nuclear arms capability. To wit, here is Obama’s approach to the nuclear negotiations with Iran, as stated in a recent interview: “I believe in diplomacy, I believe in dialogue, I believe in engagement” and he added that Iran can be “a very successful regional power”, one that is “abiding by international norms and rules”. And he has even refused to rule out the possibility of a renewal of normal diplomatic relations with Iran, including the reopening of our embassy. This is naive to the max and recklessly hopeful. Iran is our most prominent and committed enemy, the biggest single cause and supplier of Islamic terrorism in the world, responsible for thousands of American deaths, and with which arguably we have been at war since 1979!
Beyond the specifics of the Iranian threat and other particular hot spots is the worst part. This is the overarching problem of the core of the Obama worldview, which is that America is not a positive force in the world, it’s a problem for the world and should withdraw. It’s like a big neon sign over the door–we’re in a withdrawal mode with two years left, so act accordingly. A great example of this view was coined early in his administration by one of his foreign policy advisors–“leading from behind”. Nothing better fits the mindset of this President and his progressive foreign policy strategy than this phrase and no message could be more dangerous for America and the world.