The world is a mess, and getting worse every day. Truly earthshattering events will reverberate for decades to come. Yet, too busy with its self-perpetuation, our political class doesn’t appear to be moved.
The fish always stinks from the head, and for almost seven years, the country’s head has been President Obama. When observing his foreign policy, one has to wonder whether this man ever took a 20th Century history class. Does he know anything about the world between WWI and WWII? Has he ever heard about the Weimar Republic, the Spanish Civil War, the Nazi regime of Adolf Hitler or of course, WWII and the Cold War that followed?
Looking at what he appears to prioritize in his presidency, one has to wonder. Aside from playing golf, attending fundraisers and sticking his finger in Republicans’ eyes (not necessarily in that order), he clearly engages on domestic issues such as income inequality, immigrants’ rights and the environment. He becomes particularly emotional when raising the issue of racism and discussing gun control (though, interestingly, has not addressed the extraordinarily high black-on-black murder rate in his home town of Chicago).
Yet, the primary responsibility of government, the national security of the nation, never seems to be of particular interest or to elicit emotions from this president. Defense and State, traditionally considered the two most important government departments, appear to be mere afterthoughts, frequently characterized by delays in decision-making or outright inaction. Not surprising, he stumbles from one foreign policy disaster to the next, yet does not appear to care.
Obama and his national security team’s inability to interpret recent history and draw appropriate conclusions is staggering.
But shouldn’t our government be able to recognize the similarities between now and the 1930s, when downtrodden Germany found a dynamic, devilish new leader in Hitler, who promised reconstitution of the greatness of the German Reich, beaten down by the Versailles Agreement after WWI, and socially eviscerated by the Great Depression.
Now it is Putin’s Russian Federation, like Hitler’s German Reich in the 1930s a powerful military machine that feels denigrated by the rest of the world, and is determined to proof her political relevance. Like Hitler’s Germany, the political insanity starts with unopposed expansion of the motherland with military force (sic. Crimea and the Ukraine) testing one’s military and projecting military capabilities by initiating a proxy war with “the other side” (sic. Syria).
The many analogies are truly eerie: Hitler organized the 1936 summer Olympics in Berlin as a demonstration of Germany’s re-ascendance. In 1936 the Spanish Civil War started as a proxy-war between Europe’s Fascist right and democratic left. By siding with the Fascist Franco regime, Hitler used Spain’s civil war as a testing ground for his military. By 1938, Austria was annexed into The Reich, by early 1939 the Czech Sudetenland was conquered and shortly thereafter Poland was attacked, which started WWII.
Russia’s 2014 winter Olympics in Sochi were not only called Putin’s Olympics but were to demonstrate Russia’s re-ascendance as a political, military and economic power in the world. Only weeks later, Russian troops occupied the Crimea and invaded the eastern parts of the Ukraine. Over the last few weeks, Russian military forces have become actively involved in the Syrian civil war and, certainly not on our side. Senior U.S. military strategists have started to call Putin’s intervention in Syria a proxy-war against the U.S., while the Russian military leadership openly acknowledged to the international press that “the Syrian intervention represented a good opportunity to test Russia’s weapon systems.”
And then there is the famous Chamberlain episode, when the British Chancellor triumphantly returned to London after meeting with Hitler, claiming to “have achieved permanent peace in Europe” by ceding to Hitler the Sudetenland. Nobody in those days listened to Winston Churchill, who strongly opposed the agreement, and correctly foresaw its consequences.
The contemporary analogy is Obama’s infamous Iran deal, which not only released 250 billion U.S. dollars to Iran, but also ended all economic sanctions. Like Chamberlain from Hitler, Obama received nothing in return for his graciousness from the Iranians. Indeed, within days it became apparent that Russia (one of the countries that negotiated the Iran deal) and Iran, behind Obama’s back, had formed a political and military alliance with Iraq and the Syrian government against the limited U.S. efforts in Syria (it was announced days after Obama met with Putin at the U.N.).
There, however, is one big difference between Chamberlain’s and Obama’s deals: Chamberlain had the overwhelming support of Parliament and the British people when he signed his now infamous agreement with Hitler. In contrast, two-thirds of the American public and clear majorities in both houses of Congress opposed Obama’s Iran deal. Despite obvious lack of public support, Obama concluded the agreement, likely the most consequential national security agreement reached between the U.S. and a hostile nation since WWII.
Even the economy mimics circumstances in 1930 to some degree: While we are fortunate to have avoided a second worldwide depression in 2008, the International Monetary Fund just warned of yet another pending worldwide recession. One wonders how well the world would withstand a second devastating recession after the anemic recovery in history from the last one. With interest rates in most of the developed world already at or close to zero, federal reserves have few options left to stimulate collapsing markets and economies.
Seven years of Obama foreign policy have brought the world close to a political and military abyss. Russia’s Putin understood President Obama’s message loud and clear when, while running for his second term, he whispered into Dimitri Medvedev’s ear that “after his reelection he would be able to be more flexible.”
He has indeed become more flexible vis-à-vis the newly expanding Russia but also vis-à-vis Teheran, the leading terrorist government in the world, as well as toward Cuba, which still incarcerates more political prisoners than even much larger totalitarian countries. Indeed, this increased flexibility is being offered to practically every government that expresses hostility toward the U.S., while Obama clearly distances himself from longtime allies like Egypt and Israel.
The Canary predicted Obama’s policies before his reelection because they match his ideological geopolitical world view (Obama’s foreign and security policies are not based on history lessons but on an internationalist, Marxist, third-world ideology. I say this because it is almost incomprehensible to maintain a Marxist ideology after studying 20th century history. As we previously noted, Obama grew up surrounded by proponents of a multi-centric, anti-colonialist world in which the U.S. is no longer the dominant nation but one among many. It is defanged in its abilities and no longer able to impose her will upon the rest of the world.
What happens out there in the world, therefore, does not matter much to Obama; the weaker the U.S. becomes strategically and militarily the better, because this means it is less likely that the U.S. will be strong enough to intervene in other parts of the world militarily. Like Ronald Reagan became a highly consequential president by rebuilding America’s military might after a disastrous Carter presidency, Obama is striving to become a consequential president for having eliminated the country’s overwhelming might, which made it the only “superpower” in the world.
No longer the world’s lone “superpower,” Obama’s second policy goal is to make the country turn inwards toward all domestic problems that make his heart beat faster. Considering these ideology-driven priorities, his disinterest in foreign policy and the dismantling of U.S. military strength during his two administrations should not surprise. The 250,000 Syrians who have perished, and millions of refugees now flooding Western Europe with irrevocable consequences for decades to come, are hardly worth his attention, unless, of course, they come to the U.S. as potential political supporters of future Democratic administrations.
One would think that this level of ideological blindness would be met by a thoughtful Republican strategy. But Republican policy makers are preoccupied with trying to launch successful primary campaigns for 2016, a suggestion that is laughable at best. When it appeared that things could not get any more bizarre, the Republican leader of the House resigned and his second-in-command revealed himself as an even less competent party spokesman. He did not even make it to the succession vote for the Speaker position, although only days earlier, it was projected that he would easily win this vote.
And then there is the Democratic political farce surrounding the “inevitable Hillary Clinton,” increasingly unpopular with the public, and outright hated by the Obamas and Valerie Jarret (Obama’s female Rasputin). Anybody who still believes that Hillary will be the Democratic candidate in 2016 does not understand the modus operandi of the current White House.
The Canary explained this modus operandi over a year ago, when we asked where General David Petraeus had disappeared to at a time when this country was in desperate need of his tactical military genius. Shortly before our piece appeared, the FBI had initiated an investigation against him, and he was forced to resign as CIA Chief.
Does that sound familiar?
The ongoing Hillary investigation by the FBI will allegedly be completed by the end of the year. Isn’t it amazing how quickly the FBI can and will get an investigation completed when it suits a good political purpose, like preventing Hillary from ever setting foot into the White House (compare this to the IRS investigation, for which not one victim was interviewed)?
Yes, this is how much the Obamas and Jarret hate the Clintons; Like Petraeus before her, Hillary will receive a settlement offer from Justice that she will not be able to refuse. The offer will be to retire from politics prior to the Iowa Caucuses and the New Hampshire primary in early February in exchange for staying away from the White House or she will be formally indicted and, likely, go to jail. It’s not hard to guess which option she will choose. And since Vice President Biden already knows that this settlement is in the works, expect his announcement that he will join the campaign for the presidency soon.
With all of this going on in Washington, who can be surprised that our political elite doesn’t seem to care that the world around us is crumbling. It’s the 1930s all over again, and more chaos is on the way, with no political leadership visible anywhere in the Western world to resist the forceful spread of authoritarianism by the Russian Federation, China, Iran and other powers hostile to the U.S. and Western democratic values.
Obama is succeeding in becoming a very consequential U.S. president, with unfortunate consequences for the next generations. And he still has another 14 months to go.
God help us!