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Obama Report Card Part 2-- Staring into the Foriegn Policy and Financial Abyss

By Gary Starr for The Neville Awards
March 8, 2009

Grade: Beyond F

We thought we would have to wait for at least another two months for the Fraudinator-In-Chief to rack up as many failures as he racked up in the first five weeks. But Obama does not disappoint. In all things domestic and foreign the U.S. is in full retreat.

Domestically the Dow Jones Industrial Average, or the "tracking poll" as Obama prefers to call it, continues it's downward trend with Washington policy makers unable to come up with anything other than worn out tax and spend solutions. Stocks are off 28.4% since his election, 15.2% since his inauguration, and 17.2% since his so-called “stimulus” bill was enacted. It's almost as if Obama doesn't care.

He offered this gem regarding the Dow on March 2, 2009:

"What I am looking for is not the day-to-day gyrations of the stock market, but the long-term. The stock market is sort of like a tracking poll in politics. It bobs up and down every day. If you spend your time worrying about that, you're probably going to get the long-term strategy wrong.

That remark won him his seventh Neville Award.

On the diplomatic and foreign policy front things are deteriorating rapidly.
  • In a stunning diplomacy gaffe Obama insulted British Prime minister Gordon Brown on his recent visit to the U.S.
  • Secretary of State Hillary Clinton insulted the Russians on her "worldwind" diplomatic tour.
  • Obama is busy selling out our East European allies by offering to trade our missile shield for help from the Russians in delaing with Iran's nuclear and long range missile programs.
  • Obama has offered to ease travel and trade restrictions with Cuba.
  • Obama wants to talk to "moderate elements" of the Taliban in Afghanistan (an oxymoron if there ever was one)
  • Our shaky ally Pakistan has just turned the Swat Valley over to the Taliban.
We are told the reason for the Gordon Brown kerfluffle is that Obama just didn't realize the amount of work that would be crossing his desk as President, and that he is worn out. White House sources say Mr. Obama has been "overwhelmed" by the economic meltdown and have voiced concerns that the new president is not getting enough rest. But he does have time to party every Wednesday night with celebs like Stevie Wonder and Earth Wind and Fire.

So lets look at the foreign policy disasters one by one.

Gordon Brown and the British

London aghast at President Obama over gifts given to Prime Minister Brown
BY David Saltonstall

London newspapers are howling over a string of alleged snubs by Obama to British Prime Minister Gordon Brown during his visit to Washington last week - including a squabble over presidential gift-giving.

"President Obama has been rudeness personified towards Britain," sniffed The Daily Telegraph Friday. "His handling of the visit of the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, to Washington was appalling."

The list of complaints is longer than the Magna Carta: Obama canceled a planned, podium-to-podium news conference with Brown (actually, none was ever scheduled); he recently removed a bust of former Prime Minister Winston Churchill from the Oval Office; and he gave gifts to the Brown family that were "about as exciting as a pair of socks," one Fleet Street wag whined.

That last bit might be true. After Brown presented Obama with a pen holder crafted from the timbers of the 19th century British warship HMS President (whose sister ship, HMS Resolute, provided the wood for the Oval Office's desk), Obama offered up ... 25 DVDs of American movie classics.

Equally insulting, decided the Times of London, was Michelle Obama's "solipsistic" and "inherently dismissive" gifts to the Browns' two little boys, Fraser and John.

The offending souvenirs? Toy models of Marine One, the President's helicopter - gifts no doubt plucked from the White House gift shop at the last minute, The Times decided.

Brown's wife, Sarah, by contrast arrived with dresses for Sasha and Malia from the UK's trendy Top Shop (with matching necklaces) and a selection of books by British authors.

The Brits have blown up the alleged snubs into new evidence that the "special relationship" between the two nations is no longer quite so special.

The hand-wringing began last month when Obama removed a bust of Churchill from the Oval Office and replaced it with his hero, Abraham Lincoln.

The Times of London immediately traced Obama's "disdain" for Churchill to Kenya, where Obama's grandfather was caught up in the Churchill-led suppression of the 1950s Mau Mau Rebellion that left thousands of Kenyans dead.

Here is the larger issue regarding Great Britain. There was no joint press conference, there was no state dinner, and the gifts presented to the Browns smack of a "just so five minutes ago" afterthought. We at Neville suspect something much larger in the failure of this visit.

The actual views of many in the Obama administration were revealed by a State Department official involved in planning the Brown visit, who reacted with fury when questioned by The Sunday Telegraph about why the event was so low-key.

The official dismissed any notion of a special relationship, saying: "There's nothing special about Britain. You're just the same as the other 190 countries in the world. You shouldn't expect special treatment."

In one of the most stunning acts of his first days as president, Obama ordered a bronze bust of Winston Churchill (which Tony Blair had given George W Bush after 9/11) returned to the British embassy.

Arthur Herman writes in the NY Post on March 9, 2009:

This was a stunning posthumous attack on the memory of a man who was not only the living embodiment of the Anglo-American special relationship (Churchill was half American), but of its ideological foundations.

The alliance that Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt crafted to win World War Two was more than just good strategy. They forged it in order to assert and defend an ideal which had fallen on hard times in the dark days of 1941, that of individual human liberty.

Originally born in Britain, this common ideal holds that human beings have a God-given natural right to arrange their lives as they see fit without interference from any authority, whether pope or king or government bureaucrat. The belief has always been America's most precious historical legacy, and the rock on which our friendship with Great Britain is built.

It was that ideal which the Founding Fathers inherited from Britain, expressed as the rights of freeborn Englishmen. Our founders fought and nearly lost a war of independence against the British crown, and devised their own Constitution, to preserve the same ideal.

That same ideal led American and British soldiers to wade ashore on D-Day, and American and British sailors to endure kamikaze attacks at Okinawa. It made both countries stand fast against the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

It is also why Blair and then Brown stood by George W. Bush in Afghanistan and Iraq.

It was to commemorate that ideal and its legacy that Blair originally gave Bush the Churchill bust - and why Brown gave Obama the Churchill biography.

Those eight volumes will plainly sit unread on the White House bookshelf - because Barack Obama clearly considers that legacy, like the Anglo-American alliance itself, to be outdated.

These critics don't see a legacy of freedom going back to Magna Carta. They see a historical procession of self-serving white males. And Churchill is not the man who singlehandedly stood up against Hitler and who warned us all about the Soviet Union's iron curtain, but a white supremacist.

In this view (which also sees an America steeped in racism, colonialism and greed, rather than a nation dedicated to the proposition of liberty under law), there is no need to preserve any precious British-born legacy.

So our brilliant Fraudinator-In_Chief (or is it petty?) Barack Obama is going to make the Brits pay, one way or another, for the sins of the past.

The Russians

With the Iranians ramping up their missile technology, (they just launched their first satellite) and the announcement of sufficient quantities of enriched uranium to build a nuclear weapon, Obama is in a bit of a jam. How to fix the problem? Sell out our Eastern European allies, of course, by trading away our proposed missile shield, specifically designed to to protect Europe from an Iranian attack.

Obama made the following proposal on Iran in a letter to his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev: for Russian help in resolving Iran's nuclear program the U.S. would withdraw plans for a missile shield. Russia's cooperation would make any missile shield unecessary.

We at Neville can hear it now..."I can't believe the Russians lied to me!!!"

Charles Krauthammer writes at Real Clear Politics on February 20, 2009:

The Biden prophecy has come to pass. Our wacky veep, momentarily inspired, predicted in October that "it will not be six months before the world tests Barack Obama." Biden probably had in mind an eve-of-the-apocalypse drama like the Cuban missile crisis. Instead, Obama's challenges have come in smaller bites. Some are deliberate threats to U.S. interests, others mere probes to ascertain whether the new president has any spine.

Preliminary X-rays are not very encouraging.

Consider the long list of brazen Russian provocations:
  • Pressuring Kyrgyzstan to shut down the U.S. air base in Manas, an absolutely crucial NATO conduit into Afghanistan.
  • Announcing the formation of a "rapid reaction force" with six former Soviet republics, a regional Russian-led strike force meant to reassert Russian hegemony in the Muslim belt north of Afghanistan.
  • Planning to establish a Black Sea naval base in Georgia's breakaway province of Abkhazia, conquered by Moscow last summer.
  • Declaring its intention to deploy offensive Iskander missiles in Kaliningrad if Poland and the Czech Republic go ahead with plans to station an American (anti-Iranian) missile defense system.
President Bush's response to the Kaliningrad deployment -- the threat was issued the day after Obama's election -- was firm. He refused to back down because giving in to Russian threats would leave Poles and Czechs exposed and show the world that, contrary to post-Cold War assumptions, the United States could not be trusted to protect Eastern Europe from Russian bullying.

The Obama response? "Biden Signals U.S. Is Open to Russia Missile Deal," as the New York Times headlined Biden's Feb. 7 Munich speech to a major international gathering. This followed strong messages from the Obama transition team even before the inauguration that Obama was not committed to the missile shield. And just to make sure everyone understood that the Bush policy no longer held, Biden said in Munich that the United States wanted to "press the reset button" on NATO-Russian relations.

You see, the Russians and the Iranians are old friends. The Soviets used to supply the Iranians with weapons back when the Islamic revolution was new and war with Sadaam Houssein was endless. That friendship has never died and Obama is dumb enough step right into the Russian bear-trap.

Or is he? Again something deeper must be understood. Obama, born of a Kenyan father and hippie wacko mother, and raised in Indonesian Madrassas, has no empathy for the American experience, or the American Black experience for that matter. In this country his mentors were all America hating leftists. We at Neville believe Obama's loyalty to the U.S. is ambivalent, at best.

Most recent was the Russia/Hillary gaffe. Sec. of State Clinton presented Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov with a red "reset button" to symbolize improved ties, but the gift drew strained smiles as the word "reset" was mistranslated into the Russian for "overcharge."

"I would like to present you with a little gift that represents what President Obama and Vice President Biden and I have been saying and that is: 'We want to reset our relationship and so we will do it together," said Clinton, presenting Lavrov with a palm-sized yellow box with a red button.

Clinton joked to Lavrov: "We worked hard to get the right Russian word. Do you think we got it?"

"You got it wrong," said Lavrov, smiling as the two pushed the reset button together before dinner at a Geneva hotel.

He told Clinton the word "Peregruzka" meant "overcharge," to which Clinton replied: "We won't let you do that to us."

You couldn't make this stuff up....

The Taliban and Pakistan

In April of 2007 our intrepid Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid declared defeat in Iraq by opining: "I believe myself that the secretary of state, secretary of defense and - you have to make your own decisions as to what the president knows - (know) this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything..." He said this before the surge had even ramped up. A true profile in courage.

Following in Reid's footsteps our Fraudinator-In-Chief Obama declared defeat in Afghanistan and said the following on March 7, 2009: "America is not winning the Afghanistan war and should reach out to the Taliban to curb the rising bloodshed." Is he nuts?

He dug his defeatist hole deeper by saying: "There may be some comparable opportunities in Afghanistan and the Pakistani region, but you've seen conditions deteriorate over the last couple of years. The Taliban is bolder than it was. In the southern regions of the country you're seeing them attack in ways we have not seen previously."

Fortunately the Taliban rebuked Obama's lame and naive offer and spared him later embarrassment by saying that there is nothing to talk about until the United States withdraws it's support of Israel and leaves Iraq. For now, at least, Obama won't have to say "I can't believe Mullah Omar lied to me!"

Thus Obama has declared a desire to talk to the people who enabled al Qeada in killing 3000 of our citizens. Obama hoped he could find "moderate" elements of the Taliban to reason with...a true oxymoron.

In March 2009, against the advice of generals who want an increase of 30,000-50,000 troops to counter the rising violence, Obama ordered only 17,000 U.S. troops to be sent to Afghanistan to bolster the force of 38,000 already in the country. Perhaps he thought the small number of troops wouldn't be noticed by his leftist base. Obama is doing exactly what Bush's critics accused Bush of doing in Iraq, not listening to his generals and trying to wage a war on the cheap.

Meanwhile in Pakistan the situation on the ground is deteriorating rapidly. The Pakistani government freed from house arrest A.Q. Khan, the notorious proliferator who sold nuclear technology to North Korea, Libya and Iran.

Ten days later, Islamabad capitulated to the Taliban, turning over the Swat Valley, a mere 100 miles from the capital. Sharia law now reigns there and members of the democratically elected secular party will be hunted as the Pakistani army stands down.

Excerpted from The Wall Street Journal editorial "The New Sultans of Swat"

FEBRUARY 23, 2009

Last year, Pakistanis in the northern Malakand district voted overwhelmingly for the country's secular parties, including the Pakistan People's Party of President Asif Ali Zardari. Last week, Mr. Zardari repaid the favor by agreeing to the imposition of Shariah law in the area and suspending military operations against an encroaching Taliban.

The deal was struck with longtime insurgent leader Sufi Mohammed, who has been fighting to impose Shariah law for 40 years. Sufi Mohammed is said to be at loggerheads with his even more radical son-in-law, the Taliban-connected Maulana Fazlullah, and the government hopes that the concession of Shariah law could marginalize Fazlullah while the Pakistan Army girds for more fighting in the spring. The Pakistan government portrays the deal as little more than a tactical concession and, according to Information Minister Sherry Rahman, is "in no way a sign of the state's weakness."

This cease-fire smacks of a similar deal the previous government of Pervez Musharraf arranged in Pakistan's tribal areas in 2006. That deal created a Taliban sanctuary and led to sharp increases in terrorist attacks, both in Afghanistan and the Pakistan heartland. Sufi Mohammed has signed three previous pacts with various Pakistani governments extending the writ of Islamic law. None mollified the extremists; each invited the next round of violent demands.

Mr. Zardari's government has heretofore shown a willingness to fight the Taliban and has taken an openly pro-American line since gaining power last year. It has also allowed the CIA's Predator strikes, which have reportedly killed 11 top al Qaeda leaders. Pakistanis have also consistently repudiated Islamists at the ballot box.

This makes it all the more crucial that Mr. Zardari not squander this public support by backing down against Islamist terrorism. The longer the Swat cease-fire lasts, the more likely the region will become another safe haven for extremists inside Pakistan -- and an existential threat to Mr. Zardari's government and moderate Pakistani Muslims.

Ten days later, Islamabad capitulated to the Taliban, turning over the Swat Valley, a mere 100 miles from the capital. Sharia law now reigns there and members of the democratically elected secular party will be hunted as the Pakistani army stands down.

Finally Obama has moved to ease some travel and trade restrictions as a first step towards better ties with Castro, raising hopes of an eventual lifting of the four-decade-old economic embargo.

Excerpted from an AP article:

Latin America, once considered Washington's "backyard", has become newly assertive and ended the Castro government's pariah status. The presidents of Brazil, Chile, Dominican Republic, Ecuador and Guatemala have recently visited Havana to deepen economic and political ties. Brazil's president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, is expected to tell Obama on a White House visit this week that the region views the US embargo as anachronistic and vindictive. Easing it would help mend Washington's strained relations with the "pink tide" of leftist governments.

Obama's proposed Cuba measures would only partly thaw a policy frozen since John F Kennedy tried to isolate the communist state across the Florida Straits. "It would signal new pragmatism, but you would still have the embargo, which is the centrepiece of US policy," said Erikson.

Wayne Smith at the Centre for International Policy, Washington DC, said: "I think that the Obama administration will go ahead and lift restrictions on travel of Cuban Americans and remittance to their families. He may also lift restrictions on academic travel.

Neville's comment...Great, so now all of the leftist kooks posing as professors at our universities can get their training and propaganda direct from the source.

We at Neville believe something else is going on with our "pretender to the throne." Consider what has happened since the inauguration:
  • A plunging Dow
  • Unprecedented "stimulus and budget" spending with no end in sight
  • Unemployment going up
  • One foreign policy disaster after another
  • Idiotic appointments to the cabinet
And a complicit press willing to cover all of it up or make excuses.

With every situation Obama appears to have made the wrong choices. Or has he made the wrong choices? Is he that much of a he that dumb? We think not. This cannot be stressed enough...something deeper must be understood.

As was mentioned earlier, Obama, born of a Kenyan father and hippie wacko mother, and raised in Indonesian Madrassas, has no empathy for the American experience. In this country his mentors were all America hating leftists. We at Neville believe Obama's loyalty to the U.S. is ambivalent, at best.

Thus his choices may be deliberate. He has shown, repeatedly, a willingness, in fact, an eagerness to talk to our enemies. It always seems to be his first impulse.

There also seems to be a willingness to disrespect and sell out our allies, notably England and Eastern Europe. And finally there is his intellectual laziness when it comes to the economy. Tax and spend and centralizing the governement is also the first impulse. A pattern of aloof, glib neglect is beginning to emerge, almost as if he wants the country to fail. Is something or someone else is running him? Is Obama a Manchurian Candidate?

Or could it be as simple as the ultimate bank job...
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