Search This Blog

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Dithering as Policy

President Obama has set the USA up for a major defeat in Yemen.  It's hard to believe that this could happen so fast.  The Shiite rebels called the Houthis in Yemen have taken over vast chunks of the country.  The Houthis are backed by Iran.  Saudi Arabia is helping the mostly Sunni government forces.  The USA supported the actions by the Saudis but we have been almost completely uninvolved.  Obama even had the American embassy evacuated from the Yemeni capital.  At that point, the Iranians sent a convoy of seven ships to resupply the Houthis with weapons.  That resupply effort is in direct violation of a resolution passed by the UN Security Council unanimously last week.

It was at that point that Obama set up America for defeat.  Here's what he did:  Obama had a fleet of eleven American navy ships including an aircraft carrier sail to the area to shadow the Iranian ships.  In other words, Obama placed a major bet on the table by making clear that the USA would stop the Iranian weapons shipments.  Otherwise, there is no reason to put the navy ships in the area.  And now the reports from the White House tell us that Obama is very far from ordering the navy to board the Iranian ships to prevent the weapons from being delivered.

Think about that.  America sends its most powerful warships to confront the Iranian vessels and then it backs down as the Iranian ships reach Yemen.  What a humiliation!  If Obama ever wanted to drive home the lesson that America is an impotent giant and that our allies cannot rely on us for assistance or protection, he is doing so with this latest bit of dithering.  It is a disaster for American policy in the region.

Hopefully, Obama will come to his senses and have the navy stop the Iranian ships before they get to Yemen.  That move could lead to a confrontation with Iran, but it will be a confrontation which Obama himself chose.  Even so, failure to act would be such a disaster that Obama should have no choice.

I would call Obama and his team a bunch of amateurs, but that would be an insult to amateurs everywhere.


No comments: