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By David Vance On April 30th, 2014

This is so risible and yet the MSM let him away with it;

Mr Obama declared in Manila, there was an “Obama doctrine.” It was cautious and incremental, and saw military intervention as the last, not the first resort. This approach to world affairs might not be “sexy,” he continued, using baseball metaphors to explain. The goal was to avoid errors. Foreign policy progress consisted of “singles and doubles…. every once in a while we may be able to hit a home run.”

So, let’s look and see how that is working out, shall we?

  • Arab Spring, yup, that’s working out swell,
  • Syria? Yup, top job, Assad still in power.
  • Crimea? Yup, superb job.
  • Ukraine? Well, John Kerry has ..erm. talked tough.
  • Iran? Still pursuing their nuclear ambitions and seem disinterested in US opinion.
  • Israel/Palestinians? Peace process basically over.

So, where is the evidence that the “Obama doctrine” of speaking loudly and carrying no stick actually has worked?


  1. To be fair Obama touts this approach to international problems in his books which OI have read.
    As I might have mentioned before.
    He mentions with approval in ‘Audacity of Hope’ George Bush Senior’s coalition of the willing in the first Gulf War, which I think most people saw as a real international success.
    Personally I can see why Obama wants to get away from the US big stick approach and emulate Bush’s approach. He thinks that such an approach will yield better, fairer more lasting results.
    Which is sensible.
    Where he is perhaps wrong is that he doesn’t realise that the US must take a lead and call nations together quickly and decisively and have a workable plan.
    Talking shops have their place, but when faced with an enemy who wants to kill me and take my belongings, I’d take a warrior by my side over a lawyer every time…

  2. Leading from behind.
    or, following to be precise.

  3. //So, where is the evidence that the “Obama doctrine” of speaking loudly and carrying no stick actually has worked?//

    But in baseball they have really big sticks.
    They even carry them in parts of Belfast.

    But I agree with Agit8ed that Obama hasn’t been very good as keeping his friends close or even communicating his principles to the world.

  4. = good AT

  5. I have to admit that I feel more sympathetic towards Obama (would you like to be my fwiend Bawack??) after reading his books. I think he is a very modern man whose fractured background experiences have shaped his world view. I think he’s intelligent and reflective, but he lacks confidence as the POTUS perhaps because of a sense of rejection and insecurities. I remain very concerned about the influences in his thinking, his (ex) pastor, Saul Allinsky for example. George Bush junior showed the vacuity of thinking that American military power and American cultural values can make the world a better place. Whatever anyone says Bush came across as an airhead, a puppet almost.
    I think Obama actually had the potential to be a great President..

  6. // but he lacks confidence as the POTUS//

    What makes you think that?

    // I remain very concerned about the influences in his thinking, his (ex) pastor, Saul Allinsky for example//

    But surely any influence is relevant only insofar as it forms his present attitudes and conduct, and by now after 6 years we should be seeing plenty of evidence of that.
    What effects of his (ex) pastor have you noticed that concern you?

  7. I know it is pure coincidence but! – Democrat Presidents do seem to have started more major conflicts over the years than their Republican counterparts.

    Does it reveal some flaw in their ability to reach crucial decisions when needed? – perhaps in their desire to be seen as ‘everyone’s friend’, they delay taking any definitive action until it is too late.

    Whether any decision to declare war is right or wrong can only be seen in hindsight, so surely history is the ultimate decider.

    Democrats give the impression that they are far better, – if less successful, – as ‘meddlers’, until they reach the point where outright conflict becomes inevitable.

    Having Presidents who appear to support the different factions in Islamic politics, e.g. Sunni and Sh’ite, and thereby present a different point of view, as the occupant of the White House changes, doesn’t exactly give the impression that personal politics do not take precedence over more global factors.

    That many of the current ME conflicts are between Islamic factions and that the West is only drawn into it when meddlers such as the UN, the UK, and others start their ‘US inspired meddling’ – is, of course, yet another coincidence…

  8. he doesn’t lack confidence, he is confident as many here that the US has been a bad nation throughout it’s history.

    His doctrine is simple, reverse all of our traditional beliefs and traditions. He has been given a free hand to do just that, and the results are what they are failure and suffering in every arena.

    Yet in his view he is the greatest President to hold the office.

    Reality of the evidence paints a different picture.

  9. // but he lacks confidence as the POTUS//

    What makes you think that?

    Sorry about that, got called out to the garden..

    I think he lacks confidence because he hasn’t been able to get the whole country behind him. I think America is a deeply divided country in all kinds of ways. There are the big business interests, the weapons companies, other vested interests, and minority groups also making demands. Added to which he is leftwards/socialist leaning and he has failed to communicate his vision of America positively.

    Regarding his pastor Jeremiah Wright, you can visit the church’s website here and read the Black Value System, written by the Manford Byrd Recognition Committee ,


    and you could also read this article about why Oprah Winfrey left the church whilst Barack Obama stayed here..
    and you could do like I did whilst I was reading Audacity of Hope, net-research Jeremiah Wright’s career and belief system..

  10. In connection with the Los Angeles Times article the nbc news interview with Barack is very interesting.. Notice too that Barack in talking about Trinity church keeps talking about “the social gospel”, then re read the Black Value System statement.


  11. and here’s a pretty interesting Reverend Jeremiah Wright website..


  12. I’m not so sure that Obama lacks self-confidence…I’m guessing he ranks pretty high in this area. I think it’s more that he sees the world in varying shades of grey and not black and white. To some people that may ‘look’ like lacking self-confidence but it actually denotes a high degree of conceptual complexity. (I’m not criticizing anyone here for having a low degree of conceptual complexity because ‘it takes a village’ ;-P as Hilary would say…but people who are ultra-right or ultra-left wing and see things one way or the other with no choices in between, usually score low on tests that measure this. The ultras also view people who don’t see things one way or the other (i.e. black or white) usually view the shades of grey folks as weak or lacking in self-confidnece. I think this is also why he generally opts for the less risky approach to problems…at least at first. I think in his Dreams book he comes across as lacking self-confidence because it’s a book about him ‘finding himself and his place in the world’ given as you say ‘his fractured background’. You have to remember, he was quite young when he wrote that book nearly 20 years ago and it’s more or less a ‘coming of age story. I think Obama is very task-oriented so he sees the world as problems that need solving rather than relationships that need strengthening. So, rather than worrying about his ‘team’s’ morale or ‘making friends’ or building bridges—he looks at who can help me build this bridge because right now he’s my friend. I think this also supports my belief that he has a strong sense of self-confidence.

  13. Has everyone lost their minds?

    Mr Obama declared in Manila, there was an “Obama doctrine.” It was cautious and incremental, and saw military intervention as the last, not the first resort.

    This is a lie. A flat out, obvious lie. There isn’t the slightest difference between the foreign policies of the Obama and Bush regimes. Just as they both rolled on seamlessly from all the previous regimes.

    Guantanamo Bay remains open for business.

    Obama massively expanded the drone war into Pakistan and many other countries

    American arms were sent to Libya to depose Gadaffi

    The regime was and remains desperate to make war in Syria

    It plotted, funded and armed the violent of overthrow the previous Ukraine government

    Washington DC is more involved in more regimes, in more opponents, in more countries, in more organised groups, than ever before around the world. DC’s foreign policy has remained the same since Woodrow Wilson’s time. It’s a standing, Progressive policy of intervening always and everywhere that DC’s influence can be enhanced.

  14. Well said Pete. But the neo-cons will not be happy until Obama attacks Iran.

  15. mairin2,
    You are probably right.

  16. Pete,
    you’re probably wrong. I don’t think Obama wants to go in with all guns blazing anywhere. He might be being put under pressure to do that, but I don’t think he shows any inclination to do so, and he’s not doing a very good job of rallying the troops/nations to work together.

  17. He gave very lightweight answers in the interview. I am not sure he referred to his policy as the “Obama Doctrine”, but rather answered questions about it. From a practical standpoint, there haven’t been many serious alternatives to his policies offered by Republicans in the US or Obama haters on ATW. The best criticism of him has come from the left (for not closing Gitmo, for not having more backbone on curtailing Israel’s excesses, his demented escalation of the drone policy).