Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Feeling some hope for Obama's foreign policy administration

You'll forgive me for feeling this way, dear reader, but I am not feeling so awful about America's foreign policy under Barack Obama.
One: The obvious. Hilary Clinton as Secretary of State. While I shuddered at the thought of her being President, while she's quite liberal, and while she's a Clinton, I nevertheless thought she was a good pick for the post. Mrs. Clinton may be lacking in several ways—and I can never forget the way she treated those Travel Office staff—warmth, empathy and cuddliness are not what I look for in a Secretary of State. Condi was an excellent S.o.S., but it's obvious that Obama would not keep her on (despite the fact that she's black), and Clinton is apt to be much better and more effective than the maudlin Madeline Albright. Hilary is tough-as-nails and she will not back down. It was Hilary, after all, who talked of "obliterating" Iran if they attacked Israel back in April. You cannot accuse Hilary Clinton of being a dove; so therefore, I think Mrs. Clinton will make a credible Secretary of State.
Two: Robert Gates remaining as Secretary of Defense. Gates served well as S.o.D. for two years and he adds another vital hawkish element to Obama's foreign policy administration. Mr. Gates also has a close working relationship with General Petraeus, who has overseen both the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, and Obama is committed to the Afghanistan effort—even risking the goodwill of Britain and the European nations by demanding higher troop levels—and may even be brought around on Iraq. Adding Gen. James Jones, the former head of NATO, as National Security Adviser is also a very shrewd move on Obama's part.
Three: The almost Bush-like speech that Obama delivered the other day, in which he declared that the United States must be the strongest military power. Obama said, "To ensure prosperity here at home and peace abroad, we all share the belief we have to maintain the strongest military on the planet ... We cannot tolerate a world where innocents are being killed by extremists." He added that his administration was "absolutely committed to eliminating the threat of terrorism."
Mr. Obama seems to be travelling down a more conciliatory path while still sounding tough, something that Bush himself has been demonstrating for the past two years.
I still gravely fear Obama's domestic policies. But, far from signing away the farm, as I feared he'd do, Barack Obama seems genuinely committed to protecting America, foreign policy wise.

1 comment:

Pen to Paper said...

Yeah, I was never truly terrified of him, but so far he seems to be making good sound judgments.