Edward de bono was right when he said that “America is not a country, it’s an idea”. In modern age, America enjoys the status of advance democracy. Countries see American style of governance as an inspiration to make necessary changes in their democratic systems.
In 2008 election, President Obama had astonished the world by blowing away every hurdle in his way to get seat of most powerful person. His vocal abilities and friendly panache had helped greatly to convince public of America, who were fed up with the war adventures of President Bush.
During campaign, opponents were accusing him of being less experienced in terms of foreign policy. His followers did not turn ears towards republican outcry as there were more serious domestic issues than foreign. His president ship is ending in coming months so let’s see, how he changed the U.S. foreign policy.
One thing should be cleared before speaking on Obama’s failures and accomplishments: U.S. global supremacy is suffering since 2008 and he (obama) did not enjoy the economic and diplomatic monopolies of America that his predecessors had enjoyed. Two basic reasons are: growing influence of China and Russian defense exports along with on ground support to U.S. opponents.
On the Middle East front, he fulfilled his election promise and withdrew all soldiers from Iraq. The last U.S. soldier left Iraqi soil in 2011. The handpicked officials and puppet government was unable to handle domestic affairs and eventually lead country into major crisis. This negligence resulted into the rise of ISIS. U.S. forces during their time had fueled up the shia sunni clashes in Iraq to manage the growing anger against their forces. Now, U.S. war colleague, Tony Blair is admitting that Iraq war was a mistake. Obama withdrew forces and did not take into account the vulnerability of the growing threat in the absence of U.S. forces.
In Egypt, U.S. favored agitation against Husni Mubarik but did not explain the beauty of democracy when army was looting the mandate of elected government and arresting president Mursi.
NATO acted on the name human rights violations in Libya but failed to help the natives to form credible national government. This made the ground fertile for the rise of ISIS and eventually, they (ISIS) slaughtered thousands of women and men and imposed their self style caliphate.
On Syria issue – matters could have been solved with much better way, if U.S. would have negotiated with Syrian government along with Russia and Iran under United Nations umbrella as Syrian war is backed by sectarianism differences in Middle East. U.S. favored the option to gear up the opposition rebel force. This policy was completely not parallel with the ground realities and turned the beautiful land into ashes even gave birth to world largest migration crisis till date. The arms that disturbed among rebel group were found to be in ISIS custody or they sold it to black market. President Obama himself in an interview admitted the mistakes in tackling the ISIS.
As far as the China is concerned, America opted for defensive approach and on South China Sea dispute; Presdient Obama could not do more than verbal criticism to limit Chinese ambitions of artificial islands. 10 year defense pact with Philippines and relaxation in terms of arm embargo on Vietnam rarely created any trouble for Chinese. The cyber spying is a growing bone of contention between the two powers.
The approach to hold a base with 10,000 soldiers in Afghanistan is a lifeline for Ghani government. It was a wise decision and he must be given the required respect for this decision. The Taliban rise is an imminent threat for afghan government and U.S. forces are helping the afghan national army through air strikes, intelligence sharing and through this policy, the current afghan government is running its business.
On India, he proved to be successful in gaining enough support and a defense pact has been signed for using each other’s bases including land, naval and air. It is actually an effort to counter China in the east. A special response cell is also been made in Pentagon for India to response the defense needs of India.
Annexation of Crimea was the first test of Obama in context of re emergence of Russian defense power, however, U.S. could not stop Russians and Crimea went into Russian hands. The proposal of different kinds of bans on Russia could have been put into action but Germany was reluctant in this way. In reality, it was a threat to Germany’s energy plans. Russia has started border patrol along European borders and pro American governments are under severe pressure.
Installation of diplomatic ties with Cuba will be the biggest achievement on foreign front along with nuclear deal with Iran. He even threatened to veto any aggressive law making by republicans during the deal to halt the negotiation process with Iranians. The matters seem to be going in the right way and first installment of frozen money has been transferred to Tehran.
One thing should be kept in mind; it would be injustice to not credit him for avoiding any military adventures anywhere in world like his predecessor. He failed on Middle East because he had been stuck into election promises and did not analyze the outcome of sudden leaving from Iraq.
The reason why he remained unable to stop China and Russia on various fronts is the change in world power and these days domestic economic conditions drive foreign policies. Most of the countries lie on Chinese and Russian side for the defense and economic benefits. So, in case, there would be some other president, military option will be destructive either.
On whole, apart from all these failures that I have explained above – he was better for world than any republican candidate.