Obama to World: I Failed, But It's Their Fault
This is the speech Obama should have given to the UN:
As my administration nears its conclusion, I want the citizens of the world to clearly understand what my mission was, why it failed, and the lessons I have learned.
My mission was to undo the terrible damage my country had visited upon much of the world. My predecessors had dominated developing countries to the advantage of the United States, and had imposed Judeo-Christian standards on them, along with capitalism. I believe this is unfair to those who don’t share our standards, and damaging to us as well, since it deprives us of the wisdom of more ancient civilizations.
We had wrecked the Middle East by invading Iraq and Afghanistan, we were in constant conflict with the Islamic Republic of Iran, and were seemingly unable to undo lingering Cold War antagonisms with countries like Russia, China, North Korea and Cuba.
I resolved to undo the damage we had done, which meant several things: weakening American military power, canceling the installation of anti-Iranian and anti-Russian missile systems in Europe, weakening traditional alliances (especially those with the colonialist powers), and establishing warmer partnerships with former enemies. Accordingly, I reached out to my most important counterparts, our long-standing rivals in Russia and Iran, President Putin and Supreme Leader Khamenei. I saw this as a fulfillment of the confidence bestowed on me by the Nobel Committee, which, as you well know, reflected the global consensus so often expressed here at the UN.
It did not, however, reflect the domestic consensus in my own country. I wanted a strategic alliance with our erstwhile enemies, especially with Iran, but American public opinion was against it. This was a part of American Islamophobia, and I fought against it from my first days in office. I even forbade officials in my administration to use phrases like “radical Islam,” or “Islamic terrorism.” I sent several letters to his Excellency, Supreme Leader Khamenei, assuring him that we would abandon all efforts at regime change, and urging him to work with us. I knew it would take time, and that if I were going to succeed, the breakthrough would likely come in my second term. As I told Russian President Medvedev, I could be much more flexible after my reelection. I was true to my word.