Military Review

Europe no longer believes in the “audacity of hope” (The Wall Street Journal, USA)


This continent is increasingly disappointed in Barack Obama.

So what happened to the audacity of hope? When it comes to the promises of Barack Obama regarding geopolitical intentions - to isolate Russia, turn it into a pariah or weaken and destroy the Islamic state - it turns out that the slogans do not turn into anything real. Did the president restart relations with Russia? Vladimir Putin gave all the fuss: the aggression in Ukraine and in Syria made people doubt that the United States is the only state in a democratic world that could confuse those who sow horror and injustice.

Add to the collapsing strategic credibility of the American president the existential discrepancies of Europe over the treatment of refugees from the Middle East - in addition to the chronic inability of European allies to act - and then the West in 2015 may seem in a state of near stupor.

New in all this is the desire of Europe to dump all the problems on Barack Obama himself. Politicians, in particular, mention it in their logical explanations at the moment when they seek Russia's favor. Commentators jokingly refer to what they see as Mr. Obama’s limitless caution.

For many years, Europe regarded Mr. Obama, in essence, as untouchable, as an unattainable symbol of positive change in America. However, two weeks ago, Ronald Pofalla, the former head of federal Chancellor Angela Merkel, destroyed this pattern. Mr. Pofalla is the co-chair of the St. Petersburg Dialogue, a semi-official German-Russian symposium that resumed its work under his influential leadership after a short pause from the German side in response to Russia's seizure of the Crimea. “It was a stupid step on the part of Obama,” Pofalla noted, “when he lowered Russia's status to the level of a regional power due to the Ukrainian conflict.”

Interpretation option: Mr. Pofalla publicly calls into question the judgments of the American president and his ability, and also expresses confidence in the Russian point of view, according to which Moscow was provoked and humiliated by Mr. Obama. In the greeting addressed to this symposium, Angela Merkel makes it clear that Mrs. Federal Chancellor wants to have “partnership” relations with Moscow, and not isolate her.

Last week, former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who is on friendly terms with Putin, supported the German description of Mr. Obama’s mismanagement and said that “unlike Obama,” he recognizes Russia's global role. Disrespectful remarks are openly addressed to the American president. In the harshest comments, Europe seems unable to even imagine that it can fight — and, for the most part, it cannot — but it has to rely on the protection of the American president, who is not ready to fight at all.

The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper, hinting at the red lines it left behind in the fight against Bashar Assad, on October 27 wrote that Mr. Obama would enter history"Entwined with pink lines." Two days before this, the Berlin newspaper Tagesspiegel in an article titled "Indecisive and Unsure," called him a man whom "no one is afraid in the Middle East." In Paris, the newspaper Le Monde last week published a comment by a Syrian human rights activist who, addressing the American president, wrote: “your retreat” allows Russia, Syria and Iran to invade with the use of force in other states.

The weakening of Mr. Obama’s authority is also reflected in the revived desire of richer European countries to refuse to reduce their greater dependence on Russian energy supplies.

In 2009, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the time called this issue a “security challenge that we ignore at our own peril and risk.” Today, companies from Austria, France, Germany and Holland decided together with Gazprom to increase the capacity of the Nord Stream gas pipeline, leaving Ukraine without transit and depriving Poland of benefits, and in this case it’s about the gas pipeline that is laid from “isolated” Russia Germany. The European Commission believes that as a result of this transaction, the dominant share of Gazprom in the German energy market will increase from 30% to 60%. German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel visited Moscow last week and discussed this deal in the presence of Mr. Putin.

And even after the new head of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford, stated that Russia is the biggest strategic threat to America, could anyone hope (very boldly) that Mr. Obama will immediately call Ms Merkel and complain about the expansion of this very “threat”?

“Insolence of Hope” is the title of a book that President Obama published in 2006 two years before his election. Some people, including me, believed that there was a possibility of interventionism in Obama's personality, and recalled Bill Clinton’s military and diplomatic participation in the events in the Balkans in the 1990-s that saved Europe from the early flow of refugees, and, moreover, saved NATO from suicidal controversy.

Mr. Obama then wrote: the time will come when the United States will have to play the role of a world policeman (“This will not change - and should not change”), take unilateral actions against immediate threats and abandon the idea that the UN Security Council has power over that kind of decisions of the United States.

Today, America’s close allies can see that it was all just foam, like his calls for a world free of nuclear weapons. weapons, or the apologetic reconciliation of the United States with Islam.

The Tagesspiegel newspaper caught this moment and wrote that “the world is looking at America,” and added that many are waiting for “time after Obama”. It is impossible not to notice the openly changing view of Europe about this man outside of his remarkable historical role.
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  1. Barboskin
    Barboskin 9 November 2015 06: 14
    A politician is like a column, as long as no one can measure it, as soon as it collapses, those who want and how they want.
    Otto von Bismarck.
    1. EGOrkka
      EGOrkka 9 November 2015 06: 34
      .... the funniest thing was before .... before even having time to guide .... he was given ..... in all seriousness .... the Nobel Peace Prize ..... and no one laughed? winked
      1. bocsman
        bocsman 9 November 2015 11: 50
        Posted by John Vinocur
        Oh, one more humorist drew! Vanya Vinokur. I made fun of my conclusions. World policeman and who authorized him, who appointed !? A bandyugan came and said, “I’m going to be in command here. And the crowd quieted down and someone went to the six with joy. And then a country was found and said enough! And on top of that, she started giving snot and a bandit and sixes! It's a shame you understand! And where is "Insolence of Hope" here? Impudence of a criminal, until the law enforcement agencies took him seriously!
      2. The comment was deleted.
  2. apro
    apro 9 November 2015 06: 19
    As the SGA was a world policeman, it will be like that and it’s deeply violent to the interests of others. Obama is going with his role, probably yes, the main thing is that the resistance to the dictatorship of the Amers should not weaken.
  3. Aleksander
    Aleksander 9 November 2015 06: 28
    I think that Obama is not the worst option - he is careful and shy, -Hillary or Bush Jr. would be much worse for Russia ....
    1. barmaley88
      barmaley88 9 November 2015 06: 47
      Obamychya for a third term!
      1. Kunar
        Kunar 9 November 2015 11: 31
        That's right! Better one known Mr. than a bunch of unknown)))))))))
    2. EvgenSad
      EvgenSad 9 November 2015 10: 42
      They would be worse for the whole world.
  4. Good cat
    Good cat 9 November 2015 06: 35
    The audacity of hope, indestructible freedom, the names of which alone stand! They are simply pathetic eccentrics in the letter m.
  5. barmaley88
    barmaley88 9 November 2015 06: 46
    Why should Obama swear on GDP
  6. iliitchitch
    iliitchitch 9 November 2015 06: 55
    Quote: Aleksander
    I think that Obama is not the worst option - he is careful and shy, -Hillary or Bush Jr. would be much worse for Russia ....

    Yes, a baboonych is not the worst option - he just has sluggish paranoia. Anyone who succeeds him will be violent by definition - that is required by the helmsmen of American society, America has suffered a grave insult - they are sent and they were beaten by one regional power. They are ridiculous: how regional can a power occupy almost 1/7 of the land? If only its region is an entire planet, then yes.
  7. rotmistr60
    rotmistr60 9 November 2015 07: 10
    it turns out that the slogans do not turn into anything real

    Towards the end of Obama's second term, Europe began to realize that it only hears slogans, but does not see real results. It is understandable why the Baltic States were so quickly accepted into the EU. Probably inhibition in political analysis is characteristic of Europe. One thing can be said about Obama's abilities - they are not. There is narcissism, arrogance, envy, vindictiveness, but the abilities of a politician in a strong country are not observed. Therefore, Europe should be ashamed of triplets that it is following such a "leader".
    1. Nyrobsky
      Nyrobsky 9 November 2015 12: 07
      Quote: rotmistr60
      Therefore, Europe should be ashamed of triplets that it is following such a "leader".

      I hope that we will see him again in the dock, a face ... a gangster's face. Family disgraced
  8. ImPerts
    ImPerts 9 November 2015 07: 22
    Mr. Obama then wrote: the time will come when the United States will have to play the role of a world policeman (“This will not change - and should not change”), take unilateral actions against immediate threats and abandon the idea that the UN Security Council has power over that kind of decisions of the United States.

    Which is stubborn and tried to apply during his presidency. Already not impressed by this book and seeing the crumbling global foundations, Putin spoke out in Munich?
    Is it because of this book that some of those in power began to open their eyes and ears?
  9. Mercenary
    Mercenary 9 November 2015 08: 59
    Surprise these g (H) omiki gayrops with a constant desire to eat fish and ... sit down. Freebie is punishable! Sarkozy is especially astonishing; when De Gaulle, France left Nato, when Sarkozy returned, and now (being retired) at the expense of the Russian Federation he is gaining points before the elections, and when he comes to power, he will begin to harass us in favor of Fashington.
  10. Mikhail3
    Mikhail3 9 November 2015 09: 51
    These people want a war with us. The article is pretty simple. Using the language of the arsonists of the war - the intellectual stratum, university professors, that is, the authors of all the most terrible doctrines and ideas of recent centuries, from Nietzscheanism to fascism, the author insistently demands war.
    Look, he writes, Europe is coming out of our will! Despite the categorical Washington order, what do these countries do? They succumb to the most terrible aggression - they buy cheap energy from Russia !! This is an attack on America! This is the first threat to democracy! This is death, horror, a nightmare!
    Russia sells energy and therefore it is the number one threat to the free world. And the damned Europeans do not want to fight against cheap energy and available resources, which Russia insidiously and bloodthirsty sells to them. Why?! Because these miserable Europeans, raped by Russian oil and gas, are no longer afraid of America. And this happened because Obama is afraid to fight! Now, if he had spilled blood on Syria, Ukraine and anyone else, Russia would certainly be scared! Moreover, the blood spilled by the mercenaries is not at all terrible for some reason, and the Russians destroy the mercenaries. So you have to send the Marines. Then the Russians will be horrified!
    And these distillers are well aware that if American troops are sent to the fronts of Ukraine and Syria, it will not be long to wait for the American to be killed by ours. They will dump the KAB on him, cut him off in a line in the Donbass ... and then the war with Russia. Exactly. So what? The distillers do not believe and do not understand that such a war will affect them too. For an intellectual, war is somewhere far away. And when the war hits him in the mug with the butt, he is terribly surprised and bleats that he "wanted the wrong thing, it's all completely wrong." Ohoho ...
  11. veksha50
    veksha50 9 November 2015 10: 17
    "there will be times when the United States will have to play the role of world policeman"...

    Here, in fact, on what slogan Obama entered the White House ...

    And now, both the author of this opus and other amer’s politicians, first of all, blame Obama not for the fact that he is fueling the hotbeds of war all over the planet, but for the fact that he cannot control Russia and its leader ...

    There is no discernible respect for Russia and no desire to live with it in friendship and peace ... Obama is accused of being "circled in pink lines" and not showing proper interventionism towards Russia ...

    So, guys, once again we are convinced that both Russia has no friends and sensible politicians on the planet are becoming less and less ...

    And business attempts to restore economic relations with Russia are just a concern for their own pockets, not friendship with Russia ...
  12. Yurmix
    Yurmix 9 November 2015 11: 29
    There has never been and never will be in the history of "good partnership" relations between Russia and the United States, under any American president. For hammering into the brains from time immemorial about their historical significance and megalomania have done their job, and not only by the average man. Personally, I compare the United States to the rule of Hitler in Germany, he was also blue-blooded and imagined himself the same, but made a big mistake by starting the war with a blitzkrieg. These same people go the other way, crushing small states under themselves, where by war, sometimes economically, and sometimes by intimidation with color revolutions and overthrowing, in other words, by blackmail. And let's not deny that these ghouls succeed. However, it turned out one thing but it was Russia, but already living not in the 90s, with a different position on the worldview (apart from the liberals, of course), the brake turned out to be fatal for them. In general terms, we can summarize: we will not be in the same boat with the mentally ill USA. PS I do not pretend to "reveal this secret".