With the likely withdrawal Saturday of the
Palestinians from their ill-advised direct talks with
Israel, it looks increasingly like Barack Obama's foreign policy is headed for
Nearly across the board, the president's initiatives are going
down in flames. Nowhere is this more true than in Pakistan where, Jane Perlez reported Wednesday, the civilian
government in which the U.S. has invested billions is perilously close to
collapse -- if not facing a military coup.
Now comes word that Pakistan is cutting off NATO's supply lines into Afghanistan in
retaliation for U.S. helicopter strikes in Pakistani territory -- strikes made
necessary because the Pakistani military can't, or won't, crack down on
militants unless they threaten the Pakistani state directly.
As for the war in Afghanistan, it's going very badly.
Further east, the United States seems headed for a disastrous currency war with China, although
Beijing's recent diplomatic blunders have sent Asian countries running into
Uncle Sam's loving arms.
To the west, Iraq still has yet to form a government after seven
months of post-election deadlock, and attacks on the Green Zone are metastasizing in a frightening way.
One rare bright spot is Russia where, despite the complaints of
Cold Warriors and human rights campaigners, relations are at their highest
point since the Yeltsin era. But much of the good work Obama's team has done
could easily unravel, especially if the Senate deep-sixes the new nuke treaty.
As for Iran, it's a mixed bag. Obama has kept Europe on board with
tough sanctions, and brought along a few other players. But China is likely to
undercut those efforts and relieve the economic pressure, leaving the United
States and Israel with few options for stopping Iran's nuclear drive.
Meanwhile, the drums of war are beginning to beat
Of course, if Obama really
wants to make a hash of the world, I can think of no better way than to start
launch airstrikes on Iran. But I doubt he's going to do that.
Dennis Brack-Pool/Getty Images