Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Deal(ing) with Iran

This post by Amanda Taub gives credit to Obama where credit is due on the Iran deal, but is pretty hard on him for his alleged failures in the Middle East. Obama's Moneyball undoctrine, as in "Don't do stupid shit," she suggests, "is really well-suited to orderly negotiations that take place in an air-conditioned hotel in Vienna, but is far less effective when it comes to problems like chaotic state collapse." And the latter is what we have in Iraq and Syria, with no good end in sight. Well, I am unqualified to judge the fine points of foreign policy, but I find this claim a little odd:
Obama's legacy in the Middle East will rightfully be associated with these crises and the failure to solve them. (The same goes for his predecessor, George W. Bush, whose Iraq invasion set many of these trends in motion.) 
In other words, the alternative to the Obama undoctrine seems to be the failed "stupid shit" doctrine. The world's a crazy and imperfect place, but I'll take my chances with the undoctrine.

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