I was rather beguiled at first by President Obama’s commencement speech at West Point. Not just because everybody else dumped all over it, and I wanted to exercise my contrarian’s prerogative to defend the indefensible. It’s because the central premise—what I call the Obama Doctrine—is rather attractive to me: President Obama’s unwillingness to employ military... Read More
Uh-oh. Looks like things are getting somewhat Ides-of-Marchy within the Obama administration. I think the coterie of Hillary Clinton supporters and enthusiasts have something to do with it. From today’s LA Times: I should say I’m pretty much on board with President Obama’s hesitations about using military force, which I would gloss as “Don’t use... Read More
...In the US-Japan Security Treaty
I should address President Obama’s explicit statement in Japan that the Senkakus were covered by the US-Japan Security Treaty. Nothing particularly new here; Secretary of State Clinton affirmed coverage in 2010 and I think it’s been reaffirmed incessantly since then. Now, if President Obama had declared that the US regarded the Senkakus as Japanese sovereign... Read More
Failure of engagement to deliver ideal outcomes do not mean that deterrence will be more successful, or even more desirable.
I try to eschew dramatic, click-baiting headlines, but I think current developments in Asia are a big deal. President Obama is visiting Japan, the Philippines, Malaysia, Japan, and South Korea. He’s not visiting the People’s Republic of China. He never planned to, because this trip is meant as an exercise in pivot-love, the bromance of... Read More
[I got my Defcons flipflopped in the original post. Herewith corrected. According to Wikipedia, the US military has only gone to Defcon 2 once, for the Cuban Missile Crisis. Even 9/11 was only Defcon 3. The different levels also have catchy descriptions, like "Cocked Pistol" and "Double Take", that are used during exercises. So if... Read More
Update: Consider this can of worms officially closed! Do not open! The United States on Wednesday rejected a call by North Korea for a new investigation of the sinking of a South Korean warship in March that Seoul blames on Pyongyang. The U.S. said the findings of a South Korean inquiry that attributes the attack... Read More