Obama’s weak foreign policy helps our enemies, hurts our allies
Should we care that President Obama is dismantling United States foreign policies, which have stood the test of time and been the product of both Democratic and Republican presidents? Leading from behind has meant not leading at all. Mr. Obama’s decisions have resulted in power vacuums in Europe and the Middle East.
In Eastern Europe, we have abandoned commitments made in 1994 to support the territorial integrity of the Ukraine (including denying a request by the Ukrainians for defensive weapons to aid in preventing the recent Russian invasion), and we have given up the defensive missile shield we had agreed to place in Poland. In return, Russia has moved into the Crimea and Ukraine, territories which gained independence from Russia when the Cold War ended.
Frequently the American public has been described as “war weary.” Could this be the result of the president’s unwillingness to rally the American public to the cause? As a presidential candidate, he labeled the fight in Afghanistan, the “good war.” We thought that while he did not agree with going to war, he would see it through to an end that justified the sacrifice America made in blood and money.
Once elected, however, he has been hell-bent to withdraw, simultaneously announcing the date of our withdrawal while temporarily committing more soldiers to the fight. He gave the enemy a perfect incentive to bide their time and continue the fight. This they have done.
In Libya, Syria and Yemen, we have evidence of the chaos produced as he leads from behind. The world sees that when he warns dictators of actions the United States will take if they fail to follow his dictates (think red lines in Syria), they need not worry, since regardless of the use of weapons of mass destruction, for example, poison gas in Syria, the president remains passive.
President Obama is not alone in inheriting foreign policies with which he disagreed. Eisenhower in Korea comes to mind when as a candidate, he promised to bring the troops home and did so. But at least he negotiated an armistice, committed U.S. soldiers to ensure the independence of South Korea (a presence which continues today), and did not unilaterally withdraw. But Mr. Obama, unlike President Eisenhower, denies any responsibility for world affairs, choosing instead to blame George W. Bush, who has been out of office six years.
The current talks with Iran dramatically highlight Mr. Obama’s attempt to dismantle United States policy. Iran’s leaders have vowed death to America and Israel; supported terrorists throughout the Middle East and elsewhere in the world; said that United Nations inspectors will not be given unhindered access to their nuclear sites; and have refused any conditions limiting the weaponizing of their nuclear assets. The International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN agency charged with inspecting nuclear sites, has made clear that Iran has denied, and will deny, them the access they need to fulfill their mission.
As president, Mr. Obama does not appreciate the importance our allies — and enemies — place on the United States maintaining a consistent, predictable foreign policy. Without predictability, our allies do not know when or if they can rely on our support. For our enemies, an equivocal foreign policy tempts them to test our will, as in the cases of Ukraine, Crimea, Syria, and perhaps now, Israel. When we do not live up to our commitments and promises, our weakness encourages our enemies’ aggression.
Richard A. Evans
Climate change case based on false assumptions, phony facts
The April 20 Gazette on page C-1 published a “news article” by Mark McGuire, “UAlbany Report, Climate to warm.” Were that news (and not opinion), it would most certainly be old news, which (I understand) is not news at all. Mr. McGuire might better have written Henny Penny Report: The sky is falling.
Associate Professor Aiguo Dai’s opinion (like Chicken Little’s) is based upon flawed assumptions and facts not in evidence. The “…science behind global warming…” supported by “…the consensus of his colleagues” is not science, but simply computer-facilitated mathematical models. These models were created to support the faith based hypothesis that increased man made carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in the atmosphere are causing the Earth to become warmer.
In the past, the same, or similar, data has been used to predict a return of the glaciers. A similar “model” and correlations can be used to prove that putting on snow tires, erecting snow fences and purchasing snow blowers can cause it to snow. Correlation does not show cause and effect. A consensus of scientific opinion once supported the flat earth theory, that the sun revolved around the earth and that disease was caused by the bad night air. In those times deniers, skeptics, the anti-consensus people were persecuted and even put to death.
The geological record suggests that the temperature of the earth, the elevation of the oceans and the concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere have varied widely on this planet. Humans have become prominent on the planet only since the Holocene, the period between the last and the presumed coming glaciation events.
In the last major glaciation event, humans lived on the floor of the North Sea between Denmark and Scotland and migrated down the shore line of the lowered Pacific Ocean to become “Native Americans.” Did the CO2 from the camp fires of these intrepid souls cause the glaciers to melt? It is probable that global warming started on their watch. So much for the noble savages compatibility with the environment.
Humans fear change and with go to great expense (like building pyramids in South America) to get some sense that we can understand, control, the seasons and the climate. Kings and chieftains of old supported predictions by priests, shamen and early scientists who, with incense, bones, chants and animal guts, predicted the future and salved their constituents fears.
Now the taxpayers support politically correct “scientists” who support the political goals of King Barack and Prince Andrew. Professor Dai’s latest calculations, the IPO (Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation) theory, uses data available when he made his previous set of inaccurate predictions. These new revelations demonstrate how by simply changing his assumptions (“We are now in the middle of a cold phase” of the IPO) and “using multiple model simulations (till one comes out “right”) can tell us that. By 2030, there will be a huge impact.” This despite “The prediction of the evolution of IPO cycles is in the early stages.” This is the last escape hatch for when the world fails to end in 2030.
These models and predictions are supported by the king and prince to convince us that we must continue to do without cheaper energy (Remember the Keystone Pipeline and fracking) and pay higher taxes. The government’s political supporters in “science” and alternative energy get grants and massive subsidies. We also get to pay increased transportation costs for essential goods.
The sky is falling. Run and tell the king.
Categories: Letters to the Editor