US foreign policy

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Feinstein Dings Obama as 'Too Cautious' With ISIS

Republicans similarly unhappy with 'we don't have a strategy'

(Newser) - Republicans were today again busily piling on President Obama's strategy— or lack thereof —against Islamic State militants, but this week they were joined by a pretty prominent Democrat: Dianne Feinstein. "I’ve learned one thing about this president, and that is he’s very cautious," said... More »

Rand Paul: I Won't Send My Son to Iraq

Senator adds that he doesn't blame Obama for the 'mess'

(Newser) - Rand Paul hit the Sunday show circuit today to stake out a position on Iraq that sets him apart from the hawks in his party. "Let's not be involved in the Syrian civil war, and let's not be involved in the Iraq civil war," the senator... More »

Obama Will Save Us All From Straw Men

Michael Gerson on the inanity of 'Don't Do Stupid [Stuff]'

(Newser) - Barack Obama has articulated his doctrine. And where FDR had his Four Freedoms, and Harry Truman would fight the spread of communism, Barack Obama … doesn't do stupid s--- . It is at least simple, writes Michael Gerson at the Washington Post , though it's a bit lacking in rhetorical... More »

Obama's Foreign Policy: 'Don't Do Stupid Sh*t'

Uncouth doctrine intended to avoid wars

(Newser) - Obama has formulated his foreign policy doctrine down to one pithy, and for most newspapers unprintable, phrase: "Don't do stupid shit." White House aides have been dropping that bon mot in conversations with journalists over the past month or so, Politico observes, detailing a half-dozen news articles... More »

Romney: Obama's Timing Is Just Dreadful

In op-ed, former candidate takes on president's foreign policy

(Newser) - Pundits have lately been lining up to second-guess President Obama's foreign policy, and the latest to do so is the guy who wanted Obama's job. In an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal today, Mitt Romney laments that America's hands seem tied everywhere from Crimea to North... More »

Obama's About to Ditch His Doctrine for Nothing

Jeffrey Goldberg thinks Obama is about to cross a line—without going far enough

(Newser) - Foreign policy experts who complain that Barack Obama doesn't have a Middle East strategy are wrong. "There is, in fact, an Obama doctrine," Jeffrey Goldberg argues at Bloomberg . And for the first time, he "seems poised to violate it in an irredeemable way." Goldberg calls... More »

US Might Step Up Involvement in Mali

Considers sending refueling planes for French jets: New York Times

(Newser) - The US has provided modest tactical and intelligence aid to France so far in its fight against al-Qaeda-linked militants in Mali, but the New York Times reports that US officials are now considering a notable increase—sending in aerial refueling planes for French fighter jets. Talks have been under way... More »

Turkey Forces Another Plane Bound for Syria to Land

And White House finds most arms sent to rebels end up in jihadists' hands

(Newser) - Turkey forced another Syria-bound plane to land today, but the Armenian plane was allowed to continue to Syria after its cargo—humanitarian aid—was searched, Reuters reports. Last week, Turkey forced down a jet en route to Syria from Russia, claiming it held weapons for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's... More »

Rand Paul: I Support Mitt, But Not His Foreign Policy

Rand outlines disagreements on CNN

(Newser) - Rand Paul is campaigning for Mitt Romney this week, but the Republican senator wants you to know that doesn't mean he supports Romney's foreign policy ideas. Paul has sometimes been "encouraged"—like when Romney called for ending the war in Afghanistan "sooner rather than later"... More »

Romney on Middle East: 'Hope Is Not a Strategy'

Candidate attacks Obama in 'major' foreign policy speech

(Newser) - Seeking to shore up his foreign policy credentials, Mitt Romney delivered a major speech today in Virginia attacking President Obama's performance overseas and outlining his own plans. "The president hopes for a safer, freer, and a more prosperous Middle East," Romney declared, according to the Washington Post... More »

Let's Grade Obama's First Term

Nicholas Kristof rates most of his policies a 'B', but an 'F' in explaining them

(Newser) - Democrats are currently busy praising President Obama to the heavens, while Republicans are heaping scorn upon him. Nicholas Kristof thinks both sides are being over the top, and in today's New York Times , he grades the president thusly:
  • The economyB. When Obama took office, the US economy was
... More »

Clinton Makes Historic Visit to Laos

She's the first US secretary of state there in five decades

(Newser) - Hillary Clinton just keeps racking up the miles , today becoming the first US secretary of state to visit Laos in more than five decades, in a test of whether a place the United States pummeled with bombs during the Vietnam War could evolve into a new foothold of American... More »

Why Afghanistan Is a 'Fool's Errand'

We cannot export democracy, just support democratic institutions

(Newser) - It's no surprise that US policies are failing in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Egypt, and around the region—they're completely missing what makes countries succeed, writes Thomas Friedman in the New York Times . The key, according to a new book, Why Nations Fail , is developing "inclusive" economic and political... More »

Romney: I'd Be Like Reagan on Iran

Mitt would pursue 'peace through strength,' he says in 'Washington Post' op-ed

(Newser) - Mitt Romney has an op-ed in today's Washington Post explaining how he'd deal with Iran. The answer? He'd do what Ronald Reagan would, rather than what the "feckless" Barack Obama is doing. In Romney's telling, the Iran hostage crisis ended because "the Iranians well... More »

Time for US to Let the World Grow Up

Ian Buruma criticizes hawks for over-relying on military, hurting US interests

(Newser) - Sure, the United States has the world's most powerful military. But President Obama's reluctance to use it is hardly a sign of pessimism or weakness, it's "realistic wisdom," writes Ian Buruma at al-Jazeera . "Old-fashioned military dominance is no longer adequate to promote US interests.... More »

First Lady’s Africa Trip Re-Ignites Criticism

Africa advocates say White House overlooks troubled continent

(Newser) - Michelle Obama's trip to southern Africa this week is giving new life to criticism that the Obama administration is overlooking the troubled continent, reports the Washington Post . The president has been to sub-Saharan Africa only once since taking office— a 24-hour trip to Ghana in 2009 —and critics... More »

Face It, Washington: Defense Budget Must Shrink

Pentagon's policies 'outdated'; deficit's the biggest threat: Romesh Ratnesar

(Newser) - The latest budget compromise may have resulted in “sweeping” and “historic” cuts, as the White House, Congress, and the media have claimed—yet “not a solitary penny” was cut from defense spending. Instead, spending will break $700 billion in 2011, which happens to be a post-World War... More »

Clinton Drove Obama Shift on Libya

Secretary of State secured Arab buy-in, convinced prez to act

(Newser) - President Obama came late to the decision to authorize military force against Libya , but he did so based on the counsel and efforts of Hillary Clinton, reports the New York Times . The secretary of state was herself against intervention until she secured buy-in from Arab nations; she then joined a... More »

Egyptian Youth to Clinton: Where Was the US?

They complain of sluggish response in online chat

(Newser) - Egyptian protesters got a chance to speak directly to Hillary Clinton for the first time, and they weren't exactly overcome with gratitude. Sample questions she fielded online via an Egyptian site:
  • "Does America really support democracy? If yes indeed, why the US was late in its support for the
... More »

US Foreign Policy in Arab World Needs Overhaul

Better intelligence needed, less realpolitik, fear of Islamism

(Newser) - With Hosni Mubarak finally out of power in Egypt, "It's a new day in the Arab world," writes Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times —and hopefully here, as well. "The truth is that the United States has been behind the curve not only in Tunisia... More »

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