Decoding the Obama Doctrine
by Daniel Pipes *
Are the Obama administration's policy failures in the Middle East a random series of errors by an incompetent leadership, or does some grand idea stand behind the pattern?
James Jeffrey, Barack Obama's former ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary to Iraq, has this to say about the administration's current record in the Middle East: "We're in a goddamn free fall."
Count the mistakes:
- Helping overthrow Muammar Qaddafi in Libya, leading to anarchy and civil war.
- Pressuring Husni Mubarak of Egypt to resign, then backing the Muslim Brotherhood, leading now-president Sisi to turn toward Moscow.
- Alienating Washington's most stalwart ally in the region, the Government of Israel.
- Dismissing ISIS as "junior varsity" just before it seized major cities. Hailing Yemen as a counterterrorism success just before its government was overthrown.
- Alarming the Saudi authorities to the point that they put together a military alliance against Iran.
- Coddling Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Turkey, encouraging his dictatorial tendencies.
- Leaving Iraq and Afghanistan prematurely, dooming the vast American investment in those two countries.