Days ago in June 2014, as we learned about the news that Islamic militant group ISIS has taken over several cities in Iraq, the Obama administration waited and pondered on what to do. Over the course of the next few days, Mr. Obama did nothing but declared that “no American boots on the ground” and to the Iraqi government he said that “it’s your problem” blaming the Iraqi government for not being politically inclusive.
As Mr. Obama continues to ponder—amid criticisms from left and right calling for doable immediate actions such as drone strikes against the militants—ISIS militants continues to inch forward and perhaps even take over Baghdad, the capital of the Iraqi Republic. Some pro-Obama personalities, in the meantime, pointed their fingers at former George W. Bush, for starting the invasion of Iraq, nearly 6 years after Bush left the white house.
Mr. Obama continues to ponder and has not made any decision, other than a few hundred soldiers sent to guard the embassy and 300 military advisors for the Iraqi government, while the Iraqi government explictly asked for air support.
When it comes to an Obama foreign policy, critics have argued that Mr. Obama does not have one. His domestic policies and decisions the administration made within the past 2 years have not been short of controversies (e.g. Benghazi, rollout of Affordable Care Act, and prisoner swap with Al Qaeda, VA scandal for example). And, one thing after another, his decisions are marked by indecisiveness (in the case of current crisis in Iraq), recklessness (in the case of prisoner swap), and even outright incompetence (in the case of ACA rollout and the VA scandal).
After almost one decade of American military occupation in Iraq, this middle east country is near the brink of falling into the hands of Islamic militants who have threatened to do more 9/11-style terrorist attacks on the United States. And, what is Mr. Obama doing? He continues with his waiting and pondering game, as if ignoring crisis after crisis is a strategy to solve real-world problems, even though this crisis poses a great threat to the future of American security.
After nearly 6 years in office, Mr. Obama has not accomplished much. This president will perhaps be remembered in history more for who he was—the first Black president—than what he actually accomplished; and a presidency marked by indecisiveness, recklessness, and outright incompetence.