...A report suggests that the most recent North Korea nuclear test, which used Uranium, not Plutonium as in their others, may have been the Iranian bomb... this one, according to some atmospheric tests, likely used highly enriched uranium, exactly the form of nuclear weapon pursued by Iran.... The question is whether the weapon North Korea tested this month was its own, Iran’s or a joint project. A senior U.S. official told The New York Times, “It’s very possible that the North Koreans are testing for two countries.” It would be foolish for Iran to test a nuclear weapon on its own soil. Nuclear weapons cannot be detonated in secret; they leave unique seismic markers that can be traced back to their source. An in-country test would simply confirm the existence of a program that for years Iran has denied....The headline of the Telegraph is even more blunt with stating the comments of this senior level foreign policy expert- he says that Barack Obama is a "dithering" president whose controlling tendencies and extreme risk-averse attitude to foreign policy has damaged US interests in the Middle East.
...A recent book suggests that there is no real Obama foreign policy. It is all domestic and political. His behavior in the sequester affair suggests that everything is focused on his power to implement a leftist agenda in his last two years with a Democrat majority in the House. He has little interest in the present circumstances in the country. In fact, he seems intent on creating the most chaos and pain from the sequester, small as it is, in order to beat the Republicans with stories of citizen distress...Its author, Vali Nasr, served with Richard Holbrooke in the Obama State Department in 2009.
Vali Nasr, a university professor who was seconded in 2009 to work with Richard Holbrooke, Mr Obama’s special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan, records his profound disillusion at how a “Berlin Wall” of domestic-focused advisers was erected to protect Mr Obama- “The president had a truly disturbing habit of funneling major foreign policy decisions through a small cabal of relatively inexperienced White House advisers whose turf was strictly politics,” Mr Nasr writes in The Dispensable Nation: America Foreign policy in Retreat.
The book sets out in detail how Mr Holbrooke, appointed with great fanfare in 2009, was systematically cut out of decision making as both he and Hillary Clinton, the former secretary of state, tried to argue the merits of engaging with the Taliban and the dangers caused by the overuse of drones. This fits well with our impression of the Obama administration.
“The White House seemed to see an actual benefit in not doing too much,” Prof Nasr writes, “The goal was to spare the president the risks that necessarily come with playing the leadership role that America claims to play in this region.”
Admiral Mike Mullen, who was chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff until September 2011, is quoted lamenting how little support Mrs Clinton received from the White House, even though she remained on good personal terms with Mr Obama. “They want to control everything,” Admiral Mullen is quoted as saying of a White House that Prof Nasr says was “ravenous” in its desire to manage foreign policy, even by the to-be-expected standards of turf wars between diplomatic and national security teams.
Mr Nasr may fear a disaster is impending and wishes to distance himself from the source of such events. We, unfortunately, are unable to do so.....
Thursday, March 7, 2013
Former State Department Official: "Obama a 'dithering, controlling, risk-averse' US president"
Michael Kennedy of Chicago Boyz has done an amazing job of analyzing Barack Obama's foreign policy in a fantastic post- read the whole post here with the links included but here is a snippet of it: