by Jerry Richardson 7/20/14
This is a follow-up to my earlier article on The Obama Creed. • In this article, I contrast President Ronald Reagan’s and President Barack Obama’s government-operational doctrine.
Since President Obama has no coherent, articulated doctrine—probably doesn’t want his doctrine known for political reasons—I propose a description of The Obama Doctrine as it has continued to publically unfold, and a description of The Reagan Doctrine especially as it related to the Soviet Union during the cold war.
DOCTRINE UNDER PRESIDENT REAGAN
THE REAGAN FINAL-RESULTS DOCTRINE: We win and they lose.
The essence of The Reagan Doctrine in regard to the Soviet Union was the replacement of the existing containment doctrine (prevent expansion) for Soviet Union aggression with a rollback doctrine (reduce or remove) that would defeat the world-wide Soviet Union aggression.
“In January 1977, four years prior to becoming president, Reagan bluntly stated, in a conversation with Richard V. Allen, his basic expectation in relation to the Cold War. “My idea of American policy toward the Soviet Union is simple, and some would say simplistic,” he said. “It is this: We win and they lose. What do you think of that?”” [underline added] —Reagan Doctrine
THE REAGAN FOREIGN-POLICY DOCTRINE: Speak effectively and carry a big stick.
A pertinent Reagan quote is: “Of the four wars in my lifetime, none came about because the US was too strong.” —Ronald Reagan 1
Another pertinent Reagan quote is: “Now let’s set the record straight. There’s no argument over the choice between peace and war, but there’s only one guaranteed way you can have peace — and you can have it in the next second — surrender.”
—Ronald Reagan 2
Ronald Reagan knew that safety and peace in a dangerous world require consistent foreign policy backed-up by military readiness. In this, he certainly agreed with the “big stick” part of Theodore Roosevelt’s famous maxim: “Speak softly and carry a big stick.”
In the diplomacy arena, Reagan was, no doubt, in favor of Speak quietly if perhaps not so taken with “Speak softly.”
“Reagan wrote a friend in 1981. “I am a believer in quiet diplomacy and so far we’ve had several quite triumphant experiences by using that method. The problem is, you can’t talk about it afterward or then you can’t do it again.””
—Ronald Reagan 3
But to characterize Reagan’s public-speech policy as “Speak softly” would, I believe, be a mischaracterization. I think Reagan’s public-speech policy is more appropriately characterized as Speak effectively.
How much more effective and forceful, with speech, can you be than with the direct challenge President Reagan issued to the Soviets, in his address given at the Brandenburg Gate/Berlin Wall:
“[June 12, 1987] General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!””
“Post-note: Two years later, in November 1989, East Germans issued a decree for the wall to be opened, allowing people to travel freely into West Berlin. In some cases, families that had been separated for decades were finally reunited. The wall was torn down altogether by the end of 1990 upon the collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe and in Soviet Russia itself, marking the end of the Cold War era.” —Ronald Reagan 4
THE REAGAN DIPLOMACY DOCTRINE: Trust but verify.
Reagan also knew that dealing with other nations of the world often requires treaties. Nations have to work together to achieve common goals. Working together successfully with other nations requires shrewd diplomacy. Reagan was a realist, he knew that people could and would lie for their own advantages, especially politicians and diplomats. Reagan knew that in the game of national diplomacy the President and US State Department must not be suckers.
“Suzanne Massie, a writer on Russia, met with President Ronald Reagan many times between 1984 and 1987. She taught him the Russian proverb, “doveryai no proveryai” (trust, but verify) advising him that “The Russians like to talk in proverbs. It would be nice of you to know a few. You are an actor – you can learn them very quickly”. The proverb was adopted as a signature phrase by Reagan, who subsequently used it frequently when discussing U.S. relations with the Soviet Union.
“After Reagan used the phrase to emphasize “the extensive verification procedures that would enable both sides to monitor compliance with the treaty”, at the signing of the INF Treaty, on 8 December 1987, his counterpart General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev responded: “You repeat that at every meeting,” to which Reagan answered “I like it.” While Reagan quoted Russian proverbs, Mr. Gorbachev quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson.” —Trust, but verify
DOCTRINE UNDER PRESIDENT OBAMA
THE OBAMA FINAL-RESULTS DOCTRINE: We give-in and they will leave us alone.
Obama’s policy of craven appeasement, relative to Islam, terrorism, and totalitarian governments, couldn’t possibly be more at odds with Reagan’s doctrine:
“…Obama has engaged incessantly with tyrannies that despise the United States (China, Russia, Iran, and the Palestinian Authority), and he has routinely undermined or ignored democratic allies.
“Obama’s neglect has caused relations with democratic India and Japan [to] languish while rising authoritarian expansionist China flaunts its disregard for the administration’s hollow Asian pivot.” —Presidential Disaster
Illustrative, for our discussion, is Obama’s diplomatic-rout at the hands of the Russians (Putin leading), known as the “reset”. This was no doubt supposed to be Obama’s showcased Russian diplomatic strategy (???). This unbelievably moronic strategy was sanctioned and conducted by Obama’s Secretary of State, at the time, Hillary Clinton.
A major part of the “reset” was the scrapping of the US-provided Eastern-European Missile Defense Shield. And for this scrapping (a diplomatic coup for Putin), the US received nothing of substance in return. The continuance of the Obama-Soviet relationship exemplified by the “reset” was guaranteed by Obama himself when he was unwittingly caught on camera in a discussion with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev:
“(Reuters) – [March 26, 2014] President Barack Obama was caught on camera on Monday assuring outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that he will have “more flexibility” to deal with contentious issues like missile defense after the U.S. presidential election.
“Obama, during talks in Seoul, urged Moscow to give him “space” until after the November ballot, and Medvedev said he would relay the message to incoming Russian president Vladimir Putin.
“I understand your message about space,” replied Medvedev, who will hand over the presidency to Putin in May.
“This is my last election … After my election I have more flexibility,” Obama said, expressing confidence that he would win a second term.
“I will transmit this information to Vladimir,” said Medvedev, Putin’s protégé and long considered number two in Moscow’s power structure.” —More flexibility
THE OBAMA FOREIGN-POLICY DOCTRINE: Speak loudly and carry no stick.
Obama always talks big, and then does nothing.
Example: Obama’s chemical-weapon “red line”—don’t cross—threat, was publically given to Syria’s Assad, by Obama, in no uncertain terms. But Assad did, intentionally, cross Obama’s “red line.” Then true to his actual in-the-closet foreign-policy (appeasement) Obama did nothing.
There is an old Texas saying for this: “Obama is all hat and no cattle.”
Another example of Obama’s big-talk occurred following the missile-downing of the Malaysian plane.
(July 17, 2014), Obama made the tone-deaf statement “Looks like it may be a terrible tragedy” concerning the missile-downing of the plane.
(July 18, 2014), he came out with a bold-sounding pronouncement, really appearing for a moment to be a man who meant business. But—sigh!—only for a moment.
“The shoot-down was a “tragedy of unspeakable proportions,” he said.
“But he gave no indication he would provide military aid or advice to the Ukraine’s embattled military, and he didn’t announce any strategy to rally international opposition to Russia.
“His language suggested that he doesn’t want the U.S. to take a leading position.
“Our preferred path is to resolve this diplomatically. … We don’t see a U.S. military role,” he said toward the end of his brief midday press conference.”
THE OBAMA DIPLOMACY DOCTRINE: Trust enemies, betray friends.
Obama and his current Secretary of State, John Kerry continue to believe that Iran can be trusted to negotiate in good faith, despite the fact that IRAN never meets deadlines agreed to in previous negotiations:
“[July 1, 2014] July brings a pivotal moment for the United States and Iran: A July 20 deadline for a long-term agreement on Iran’s nuclear program.
“To gain relief from sanctions, the world is simply asking Iran to demonstrate that its nuclear activities are what it claims them to be,” Kerry writes.”” —Deadline
“[July 19, 2014] Iran and the six world powers negotiating over Tehran’s nuclear program agreed to a four-month extension of their talks Saturday after acknowledging they will fail to meet a deadline Sunday.” —Deadline extended
Iran continues its often-demonstrated, diplomatic duplicity of hoodwinking and stalling;
Or to paraphrase a well-known boxing term, Iran continues its transparent but effective strategy of rope the Obama dope.
Meanwhile, our one true mid-east friend, Israel, gets the shaft from Obama:
“”Since coming to office, Obama administration policy toward Israel has alternated between animus and incompetence,” The Wall Street Journal said. “No wonder the Israelis are upset. It’s one thing to hear from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that he wants to wipe you off the map: At least it has the ring of honesty. It’s quite another to hear from President Obama that he has your back, even as his administration tries to sell to the public a make-believe world in which Iran’s nuclear intentions are potentially peaceful, sanctions are working and diplomacy hasn’t failed after three and half years.”” —Obama’s attitude toward Israel
RESULTS OF OBAMA’S DOCTRINE
Many areas of the world today are embroiled in armed conflict and are in political chaos due primarily to the fact that we have an incompetent President who is operating with a failed doctrine of government.
Many writers and speakers have attempted to characterize Barack Obama with a single-word political descriptor such as Progressive, Socialist, Statist, Communist, Muslim, etc.
But however accurate any of those single-word descriptors may be for Obama’s in-the-closet ideology, the actual problem and danger with Obama being President resides first and foremost in his failing (and logically necessitated failing) operational governmental-doctrine.
And if that weren’t enough, Barack Hussein Obama is hands-down the most incompetent (in all aspects of management and governing) President every elected in the history of our nation.
Obama’s failed doctrine has not only destabilized the world politically, but it has also made the United States much less secure than it was BO (before Obama).
Obama has aided and abetted the known enemies of the US and has turned his back upon former friends and allies:
Poland’s Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski laments that a strong alliance with the United States “isn’t worth anything” and “is even harmful because it creates a false sense of security.” Our Eastern European NATO allies no longer trust the United States to defend them against Putin.” —Disaster of the Obama Presidency
And all of this for what purpose?
So that Barack Obama could instigate his grand progressive plan for transforming America.
Obama told the nation what he intended to do five days before he was elected for the first time:
“Speaking tonight [October 30, 2008] at the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri, Senator Obama said, near the beginning of his speech: “We are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.””
—Candidate Barack Obama
We have seen, and discussed in some detail the results of Obama’s effort to “fundamentally transforming the United States of America”. But what has been the real essence of that transformation effort?
The real essence of Obama’s transformation effort has been his disregard-for and his violation-of the US Constitution.
We can all debate whether Obama is currently a dictator (a ruler who is unconstrained by law)—and there is good evidence for this in his qualitative overuse of Presidential Executive Orders—but it is abundantly clear that the path Obama has chosen, as President, would not significantly differ, in kind, from someone who fully intended to become America’s first dictator—such a person would necessarily have to break his oath of office.
And, Obama has clearly NOT fulfilled his oath of office:
“The oath to be taken by the president on first entering office is specified in Article II, Section 1, of the Constitution:
“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.” —Presidential Oath of Office
A thoughtful person can perhaps make excuses for the gullible voters who propelled an out-an-out charlatan into the Presidency in 2008. But simple gullibility (a strong capability for being conned) cannot account for Obama’s reelection to a second term (2012).
There are only three probable characterization-categories for a voter who voted for Barack Obama in 2012: 1) utter stupidity, 2) progressive ideology, 3) financial self-interest (belief that Obama will continue his support for government dole-outs).
Obama won the 2012 Presidential election with a popular vote of 51.1 percent.
The people of this nation can correctly and properly hold accountable
the Progressive Coalition (the three characterization-categories listed above) for the political “man-caused” disaster we find ourselves in today.
Let all work hard to not let the Progressive Coalition win again in 2014 and 2016.
© 2014, Jerry Richardson