This time FMFP finds himself under the hot lights of questions written by yours truly. Let’s see how he does…
1. Why do you think the Obama administration chose to attack Libya? Why Libya? Why now? How would you say the decision making process and final choice to start an intervention in Libya’s civil war reflects an Obama Doctrine?
FMFP: I will start with your last question. An Obama Doctrine at this point can be traced to a document written in 2008 by some of President Obama’s closest foreign policy advisers called, “Strategic Leadership: Framework for a 21st Century National Security Strategy.” Daniel Henninger of the Wall Street Journal recently captured the meat of the strategy in a recent article:
“Their blueprint…counsels constant multilateral cooperation, institution-building and consultation. While it admits U.S. preeminence, it is largely a meditation on the limits of American power and authority (my italics). This is the document’s final, summarizing sentence: ‘And such [U.S.] leadership recognizes that in a world in which power has diffused, our interests are best protected and advanced when others step up and at times lead alongside or even ahead of us.’”
As to why Libya and why now, I can only guess. Perhaps because the pressure to do something became so great and after weeks of indecision and paralysis by America, the French and British finally decided they would take the lead. Only then was it safe for the Obama Administration to act without feeling beholden to the imperialist claims that so many of the Left’s base feel naturally inclined to lodge every time American action is taken abroad.
2. When you hear the words ‘Commander and Chief’, what comes to your mind? In this vein, how does President Obama’s performance in the role, specifically in regards to Libya, but also more generally, compare to your vision?
FMFP: Commander-in-Chief is the leader of the country’s armed forces and tasked with protecting the American people against threats, foreign and domestic. This position comes with unbelievably tough decisions and responsibility. It requires leadership, instinct, skill in foreign diplomacy and ultimately, an unflinching desire to protect American citizens at all cost. Needless to say when I think of President Obama, the first thing that pops in to my head is Hillary Clinton’s famous “3AM White House Phone Ringing” Ad:
These travails are certainly no easy matter to decide but that’s what being a leader is all about and for the biggest foreign policy events of Obama’s presidency he has been silent, indecisive and weak. The next candidate for president should run that ad again and show Obama golfing, writing op-eds about gun safety and filling out his NCAA bracket while the world’s on fire. Sadly, in reference to question 1, this is probably the role Obama envisions the US playing as long as he’s president – keeping his head down as President Sarkozy and Prime Minister Cameron make the tough decisions.
Tomorrow, Average Joe takes the GPP stage to offer us how might a ‘normal’ American citizen view US involvement in Libya and the Middle East turmoil.