Monday, September 28, 2009

Partnering with the World Was Supposed to Be Easy

The big story was that Dubya alienated America's global partners and that Obama has restored their confidence.

It may not be working that way.

The Pioneer, part of India's lively journalism industry, today offers the opinion that Obama has been the worst American President for India since Richard Nixon. Briefly but pointedly these Indian editorialists note their confusion in the wake of Obama's conflicting initiatives.

A telling quote:

At various points his diplomats and Generals have said different things. Yet, in all this the overarching political message has been missing.

There has been a remarkable absence of clarity on Mr Obama’s strategic goals. In the early months, it was easy to pretend he was making up his mind.
Now, it would seem he has no mind.

What India wants is respect as the world's largest democracy and a serious military and economic power. What Obama has given India, in stark contrast to Mr. Bush, is the short end of the trade and nonproliferation sticks. When in this region America needs a reliable friend and the world needs a stable democracy, Obama is more concerned with appeasing the protectionists in the American labor movement and the nonproliferation ideologues in the global left. And we wonder whether the matter isn't all the more easily settled for Mr. Obama because India was a notable object of attention and point of diplomatic success for Mr. Bush.

China and South Asia--including India, Pakistan and Bangladesh--comprise about 1/3 of the world's population. America's best friend in the region--indeed humanity's best friend in the region--is India. Why does Obama treat India like a problem?

1 comment:

Chicago Jake said...

Why did anyone think this very inexperienced, Chicago politician would be able to handle the world stage? He won on a smile, and empty rhetoric.