Friday, May 20, 2011

Barry Rubin: Obama's Middle East Speech: The Opposite of Strategy Is Catastrophe

Barry Rubin's posts now appear on Pajamas Media:

By Barry Rubin

President Barack Obama’s big Middle East speech is extraordinarily important. I think that it has been largely misinterpreted and deserves a very detailed examination. Forgive me then for analyzing it at length but that’s necessary to understand both Obama’s thinking and policy.

First and foremost, this could be called Obama’s George Bush speech.
The intention was to find some way to make the main priority of U.S. policy the support of democracy in the Arab world. This is precisely the theme that Obama’s supporters ridiculed when Bush did it. So Obama had to find some way to approach the issue without anyone realizing he had copied Bush. He succeeded! No one seems to have caught on yet.
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press later this year. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reportsand now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media

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1 comment:

NormanF said...

Of course it is a catastrophe - US allies - not just Israel - are wondering if America will back them to the hilt. The speech gives no clue.

Hopefully Netanyahu today will correct the President and help to get America's Middle East policy back on track.

Weakening America's friends and strengthening its enemies won't increase America's standing there and enhance its security. It will instead help to produce more extremism, despotism and in all likelihood, set the stage for future wars.

There is much that is wrong about the President's speech on Israel. And much more that is wrong about the rest of his Middle East foreign policy.