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'American Abandonment of Leadership' in Middle East

10:16 AM, Oct 28, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
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Elliott Abrams writes:

Today's New York Times carries a remarkable story about the "new" Obama Middle East policy, based on interviews with National Security Advisor Susan Rice. The Times describes the policy as "modest," but that is not the right word. The policy defines an American abandonment of leadership in the region.

On Iran, the new policy seeks a negotiated deal and previous claims that “all options are on the table” are gone. No one appears to have calculated how the American and Western negotiating positions are weakened when the Iranian fear of a military attack is eliminated. A second focus is the Israeli-Palestinian “peace process,” despite the fact that no sober Israeli or Palestinian official believes a deal can be reached at this time. The third focus is Syria, where the policy now appears to be centered on Geneva talks that are sinking even as the Times article appears in print. I would rate the new policy focus as 0 for 3. 

Whole thing here.

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