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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Foreign policy would distract Obama from social hour

- - Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The current administration does not have a faulty foreign policy; it has no foreign policy, period.

When the Syrian conflict escalated, and it became clear chemical weapons use was likely, President Obama drew a "red line." When the international community confirmed use of these terrible weapons, Mr. Obama did nothing.

Mr. Obama will tell you that he negotiated the removal of all chemical weapons from Syria and that a timeline was established to do just that. However, it was pressure from Syria's allies, such as Russia, that brought about the agreement.

Today, the container ship M/V Cape Ray waits in the Mediterranean to destroy the stockpiles, but only 15 percent to 20 percent has actually been removed. The pressure is gone, and the roads are too dangerous, and deadlines such as 'red lines' seem to be adjustable with little consequence for anyone other than the people of Syria.

Last week, Sen. Richard J. Durbin, Illinois Democrat, went on CNN and announced that Congress should pass a resolution condemning Russia's invasion of Ukraine. I feel sure that Russian President Vladimir Putin is shaking in his boots over the possibility of a U.S. congressional resolution.

It is unfortunate that Mr. Durbin refrained from mentioning any possible actions the United States might take — although there is little power behind suggested options, such as suspending Russia from the Group of Eight/Group of 20 summits and freezing Russian assets.

My prediction is that there will be more deaths, and intended or unintended actions will be of little consequence. It will be a short war between Russia and the Ukraine, but innocent people will be killed.

What will the United States do once this happens? Absolutely nothing, and Mr. Putin knows it.

The administration's track record and Congress' lack of one are good predictors of the future. It is impossible to defend the moral position (or our interests) from this terrain: financial weakness, bureaucratic bloat, nanny-state policies and shrinking military capacity.

Our enemies neither respect nor fear U.S. leadership because they know our words are no more than useless rhetoric. The sad truth is that even our allies know we will not lead any action. We will not risk anything, and thus they, too, have little left to respect or support.

Mr. Obama's goal is to transform America from a capitalist society where everyone has an individual responsibility into a socialist one without individual responsibility.

He does not care one iota about America strength on the world stage. To him foreign policy costs too much and takes time away from other, more important events such as happy hour at Democratic fundraising events.

DENNIS G. BEELER

Ardmore, Tenn.