foreign policy

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Obama: Pot Shouldn't Be Young People's Top Priority

VICE co-founder Shane Smith interviews president on marijuana, foreign policy

(Newser) - President Barack Obama sat down with VICE co-founder Shane Smith, and the two jawed about issues of the day based on questions sent in after a VICE online query—Smith says "the Internet blew up" after VICE posted its request. Highlights from the interview (which Politico notes was posted... More »

Jeb Bush: 'I'm My Own Man'

Possible 2016 candidate seeks to distinguish himself from HW, Dubya

(Newser) - He's got two former presidents—and about two dozen top-level advisers to those presidents—by his side, but Jeb Bush says he's got his own foreign-policy views. "I love my father and my brother. I admire their service to the nation and the difficult decisions they had... More »

Panetta: Obama 'Lost His Way,' 'Lacks Fire'

Ex-CIA, DoD head describes frustration in new memoir

(Newser) - The man who ran the CIA from 2009 to 2011 and the Pentagon from 2011 to 2013 has got some pretty scathing things to say about his old boss in his new memoir, Worthy Fights: A Memoir of Leadership in War and Peace, and in interviews with USA Today and... More »

Obama: I Repeat, No 'Ground War in Iraq'

But critics are worried the slope is getting slippery

(Newser) - A day after a top US general raised the possibility of US ground troops in the fight against ISIS, President Obama reiterated the promise he's been making of late: "I will not commit you, and the rest of our armed forces, to fighting another ground war in Iraq,... More »

McCain, Graham: Go After ISIS Now

Senators say Obama needs a military strategy immediately

(Newser) - Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham say they're appalled that President Obama's response to the threat posed by the Islamic State is to say, " We don't have a strategy yet. " He needs to get one fast, they write in the New York Times . Putting a... More »

Obama's Big Foreign Policy Regret? Gadhafi

Not the ousting of him, but its aftermath, he tells Thomas Friedman

(Newser) - In a wide-ranging interview with Thomas Friedman of the New York Times , the president reveals what might be his biggest regret in foreign policy: Libya. Obama says the US made the right move in joining the coalition to overthrow Moammar Gadhafi, but it didn't do enough to manage the... More »

Why Obama Approved Airstrikes in Iraq

Extremists' rapid push north forced his hand, say analysts

(Newser) - President Obama gave the green light last night for the US military to launch airstrikes in Iraq, but why now? Some explanations:
  • Twofold mission: The US has already dropped food and supplies to Iraqis trapped on Mount Sinjar by extremist fighters from the Islamic State, or ISIS, and it may
... More »

White House Wants $500M for Syrian Opposition

Request to Congress says recipients will be vetted

(Newser) - President Obama promised back in May to help the Syrian opposition in its fight against Bashar al-Assad, and today he made that promise a lot more tangible. The White House asked Congress for $500 million to train and equip the opposition forces, reports USA Today . With the conflict spilling over... 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 »

Obama: US Can't Lead With Bullets Alone

President defends foreign policy, pledges help to Syria rebels

(Newser) - President Obama will ask Congress to create a $5 billion fund to help allied governments fight terrorism, and ramp up aid to Syria's rebels, he announced today, in a wide-ranging commencement speech on foreign policy. Obama spoke to West Point's graduating class, but the speech emphasized an approach... More »

We Need to Sell Young People on War

Stephen Rosen sees a generation gap on national security issues

(Newser) - Americans in their 50s and 60s largely understand the positive power of the US military. They saw a military buildup end the Cold War, and witnessed successful interventions in Serbia and Iraq in the 90s, Harvard professor Stephen Peter Rosen—a member of that generation—writes in the Wall Street ... More »

Obama Gives Americans the Foreign Policy They Want

And they're a little ashamed: Columnist

(Newser) - President Obama seems to be giving Americans the foreign policy they want—a "minimalist" one that refrains from knee-jerk military intervention and requires nations to deal with their own problems, observes Robert Kagan at the Washington Post . So why, then, are his approval ratings on foreign policy so dismal,... 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 »

Truth About Crimea: We Can't Do Squat

What are we even arguing about, asks Michael Cohen

(Newser) - If foreign policy pundits agree on anything, "it's that President Obama must do moar to stand up to Vladimir Putin," observes Michael Cohen at the Guardian ; (that's "more" plus "roar," he explains for those unfamiliar.) "We need more strong leadership and... More »

Condoleezza Rice: Ukraine Must Be Our 'Wake-Up Call'

US has to lead again, instead of looking 'exhausted and disinterested'

(Newser) - Vladimir Putin hates how the Cold War ended, and he's trying to "turn back the clock" as far he can, writes former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in the Washington Post . Which is why it's essential that the US toughen up, she argues. Rice offers a mix... More »

The World Hates America Again

Even in 2 very different nations, Germany and Egypt: Russell Berman

(Newser) - As a candidate, Barack Obama gave a well-received speech in Germany in 2008. As president, he gave another in Egypt the following year. And yet today, those two very different nations have something in common—anti-American sentiment is soaring, writes Russell Berman at Real Clear Politics . This is worrisome because... More »

Obama's Foreign Policy Approval at All-Time Low

Only 4 in 10 approve of the job he's doing

(Newser) - With low public support for US airstrikes on Syria, Obama's approval rating on foreign policy has also been sinking, and has now hit an all-time low, reports CNN . A poll by the news channel finds only four in 10 of those studied approve of the job the president is... 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 »

Egypt Mess Is Obama's 'Greatest Failure'

Roger Cohen criticizes policy; Bret Stephens says US must 'hold its nose' and back military

(Newser) - What's happening in Egypt represents President Obama's "greatest failure," writes Roger Cohen in the New York Times . Obama's much-ballyhooed speech in Cairo in 2009, intended to begin healing rifts with the Muslim world, "stands now as a monument to America’s declining influence in... More »

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