Obama: Reaching Out to Adversaries, Alienating Allies

Following the US abstention from a UN Security Council vote on Israeli settlements and Secretary of State John Kerry’s speech lambasting the policy, President Barack Obama’s foreign policy toward allies has been called into question. Uri Friedman writes in The Atlantic that Obama ran on a platform of embracing US allies as well as extending an open hand to adversarial nations such as Cuba and Iran. During his presidency, he criticized allies like Israel and Saudi Arabia when values diverged. The criticism, accompanied by clear commitment to maintaining the alliances, did not bring countries closer and instead Israel and the Philippines have balked and pushed back. President-elect Donald Trump has also criticized US allies and has not indicated whether the alliances will be maintained. Friedman categorizes Obama’s criticism as centered on shared values and Trump’s on the bottom line. The consequences of each man’s foreign policy and true assessments may require decades. – YaleGlobal

Obama: Reaching Out to Adversaries, Alienating Allies

Obama leaves mixed foreign policy, marked by criticism of US allies while maintaining his support for those nations
Uri Friedman
Thursday, January 5, 2017

Uri Friedman is a staff writer at The Atlantic, where he covers global affairs.

Copyright © 2017 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. All Rights Reserved.

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