April 19, 2016


For someone who preaches the importance of diplomacy and outreach, even to longtime enemies, President Obama can be awfully tough on his friends.

In recent months, he has offended most of the United States’ Persian Gulf allies. “All I need in the Middle East is a few smart autocrats,” he joked privately, according to a recent profile in the Atlantic magazine. Publicly, he has said he “weeps” for Saudi and Kuwaiti children.

The United States’ European allies, he complains, have grown too dependent on American firepower to keep them safe.

Even the United Kingdom, a U.S. “special” partner, has received criticism. Obama seemed to blame the postwar chaos in Libya on British Prime Minister David Cameron, who he said “became distracted by other things” and didn’t do enough to bring order to the fractious country.

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Still, when Obama is standing with the Saudi king, the British prime minister or the German chancellor, talking about their countries’ enduring alliance, it’s possible that some may be thinking back to an interview the president did late last year with comedian Jerry Seinfeld.

“How many world leaders do you think are just completely out of their mind?” Seinfeld asked Obama.

“A sizable percentage,” the president replied without missing a beat. “Some of these people, you meet them, you’ll just be chatting and you look in the eyes and go, ‘Oh, this guy’s gone.’”

And just imagine what the Washington Post would be writing about the guy if they weren’t completely in the tank for him.

Related: As Austin Bay noted last month, Obama Needs to Get Over His Self-Serving Guilt Trip.

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