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NYT News Analysis: Obama Seeks a Course of Pragmatism in the Middle East
New York Times ^ | March 10, 2011 | MARK LANDLER and HELENE COOPER

Posted on 03/11/2011 2:46:57 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife

WASHINGTON — In the Middle East crisis, as on other issues, there are two Barack Obamas: the transformative historical figure and the pragmatic American president. Three months after a Tunisian fruit vendor set himself aflame and ignited a political firestorm across the Arab world, the president is trumping the trailblazer.

With the spread of antigovernment protests from North Africa to the strategic, oil-rich Persian Gulf, President Obama has adopted a policy of restraint. He has concluded that his administration must shape its response country by country, aides say, recognizing a stark reality that American national security interests weigh as heavily as idealistic impulses. That explains why Mr. Obama has dialed down the vocal support he gave demonstrators in Cairo to a more modulated call for peaceful protest and respect for universal rights elsewhere.

This emphasis on pragmatism over idealism has left Mr. Obama vulnerable to criticism that he is losing the battle for the hearts and minds of the Arab street protesters. Some say he is failing to bind the United States to the historic change under way in the Middle East the way that Ronald Reagan forever cemented himself in history books to the end of the cold war with his famous call to tear down the Berlin Wall.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: egypt; libya; lol; obama; pragmatism; rofl; rotflol
I love it when they make an effort to call reporting "news analysis" as opposed to just printing biased news articles.

So, I'll editorialize and pull up photos of the "two Barack Obamas" and "the spread of antigovernment protests."

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1 posted on 03/11/2011 2:47:02 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: All
A Very Modest Victory in Madison
2 posted on 03/11/2011 2:48:08 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

[Obama Seeks a Course of Pragmatism in the Middle East]

That’s one way of phrasing it.

Another way might be: “Obama doesn’t know whether to sh*t or wind his watch.”


3 posted on 03/11/2011 3:16:08 AM PST by Brad from Tennessee (A politician can't give you anything he hasn't first stolen from you.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

gag me with a spoon


4 posted on 03/11/2011 3:17:32 AM PST by shalom aleichem
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I’m seeing “pragmatism” pop up in a lot of stories lately. Maybe a memo went out.


5 posted on 03/11/2011 3:17:37 AM PST by newzjunkey
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To: newzjunkey

Whomever in the White House wrote this drivel should be shamed.

It is so over-the-top effusive that it reads like a parody drawing special attention to the Obama’s lack of pragmatism and lack of tranformative results.


6 posted on 03/11/2011 3:23:16 AM PST by plangent
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To: plangent

Funny how Obama,(the other Al Sharpton) is such a pragmatist.The self appointed title of Community organizer, social activist/agitator has come a long way.


7 posted on 03/11/2011 3:35:03 AM PST by ronnie raygun (V)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
Pragmatism

Is that what we call incompetence now?

8 posted on 03/11/2011 3:40:52 AM PST by central_va (I won't be reconstructed, and I do not give a damn.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Pragmatism=A week on vacation, followed by some golf, then some ice cream


9 posted on 03/11/2011 3:42:21 AM PST by Red in Blue PA (For the first time in my adult life, I'm scared of my government.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

‘President Obama has adopted a policy of restraint.’

Obama fans’ way of saying he ain’t doing jack.


10 posted on 03/11/2011 4:00:01 AM PST by Jack Hammer
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To: shalom aleichem

My thoughts exactly.

O doesn’t know what to do ... and doesn’t want to make the effort if he knew.


11 posted on 03/11/2011 4:03:30 AM PST by BunnySlippers (I love BULL MARKETS . . .)
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To: plangent
....It is so over-the-top effusive that it reads like a parody drawing special attention to the Obama’s lack of pragmatism and lack of tranformative results.

Baffles me too.

Do they feel some need to smooth over his ineptitude?

Do elites absorb crap like this differently than normal, thinking people?

Is this for our consumption because they think we buy their nonsense?

Is it trail balloon to gauge the "disgust" meter?

A white, middle-American, etc, etc, wants to know.

12 posted on 03/11/2011 4:03:48 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: shalom aleichem

Big gag-o-meter!

...A senior administration official acknowledged the irony of Mr. Obama’s dilemma; he is, after all, the first black president, whose election was hailed on the Arab street, where many protesters identify their own struggles with the civil rights movement.

“There is a desire for Obama — not the American president, but Obama — to speak to their aspirations,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. But, he added, “his first job is to be the American president.”...


13 posted on 03/11/2011 4:08:55 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: central_va

“.....Mr. Obama has told people that it would be so much easier to be the president of China.....”


14 posted on 03/11/2011 4:13:26 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
How Mr. Obama manages to do that while also balancing American interests is a question that officials acknowledge will plague this historic president for months to come.Mr. Obama has told people that it would be so much easier to be the president of China. As one official put it, “No one is scrutinizing Hu Jintao’s words in Tahrir Square.”

Oh, really?

15 posted on 03/11/2011 4:26:48 AM PST by submarinerswife (Insanity is doing the same thing over and over, while expecting different results~Einstein)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Bullshit... he seeks CALIPHATE.

LLS


16 posted on 03/11/2011 4:29:55 AM PST by LibLieSlayer (WOLVERINES!!!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Three points I gleaned from the NY Times article:
1. This empahasis on pragmatism over idealism has left Mr. Obama vulnerable to criticism that he is losing the battle for the hearts and minds of the Arab Street protestors.

2. “Striking a very balanced, and in many ways, neutral approach is recognized by many people in the region is not being with them, or on their side.” said J. scott mastie, the head of the Middle East and North Africa for International Republican Institute. “Its very important that we be seen as supporting the demands of the people in the region”.

3. How. Mr. Obama manages to do that while also balance the American interests is a question. That officials acknowledge will plaque this historic president for months to come. Mr. Obama has told people that it would be so much easier to be the President of China. As one official put it,”No one is scrutnizing Hu jintao words in Tahrir Square.”

Obaam is feeling the pressure and he is waffling. he wants everything to be easy. Where is the “Easy” Button, right now Obaam needs to be able to press, his Hope and Change in America and his Cairo Speech are now biting him in the backside.

The 3 AM phone call has came and Obama does not know what to do pragmatism is not working. The teflon president is no more - his policies and speeches are making him to become unhinged.

The NY Times is being critical but also give Obama a rope to save his presidency. Obama is basically like his favorite food a waffle, on the 2008 campaign trail. “Please let me alone, so I can eat my waffles.”


17 posted on 03/11/2011 4:30:37 AM PST by hondact200 (Candor dat viribos alas (sincerity gives wings to strength) and Nil desperandum (never despair))
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To: hondact200

He is unmasked to the world.


18 posted on 03/11/2011 4:33:38 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Brad from Tennessee

Exactly. bttt


19 posted on 03/11/2011 4:37:54 AM PST by Matchett-PI ("Freedom's Just Another Word For Nothing Left to Tax " ~ Gagdad Bob)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
"pragmatic American president"???

There's another name for that:

WUSS

20 posted on 03/11/2011 5:35:48 AM PST by norwaypinesavage (Galileo: In science, the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of one individual)
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To: hondact200; Cincinatus' Wife
Let me try to add something to your analysis.

When they say Obama is a pragmatist or pragmatic they are saying he belongs to a foreign policy school, or group, or doctrine. Foreign policy Pragmatists are better known as foreign policy Realists. As opposed to being idealists.

There are 3 foreign policy groups in the democratic party: Realists/Pragmatists, Liberal Interventionists(idealists), and anti-war pacifists(idealists). A democratic president's foreign policy team is always composed of Realists/Pragmatists and Liberal Interventionists and when the prez fills his top three foreign policy positions he will usually have a Liberal Interventionist serving as Sec of State while the the NSA and SecDef job will go to a Realist/Pragmatist.

Like wise, there are 3 foreign policy groups in the Republican party: Realists/Pragmatists, NeoCons(Idealists), and Isolationists(Idealists). A Republican president's foreign policy team is always composed of Realists/Pragmatists and NeoCons and when the prez fills his top three foreign policy jobs he will usually have a Realist/Pragmatist serving as Sec of State and NSA while the SecDef job goes to a NeoCon.

So while both the Republican prez and the democratic prez have a coalition foreign policy team, one will dominate the other.

For Obama it is the Realist/Pragmatists. For GW Bush it was the NeoCons. For Clinton it was the Liberal Interventionists, For GHW Bush it was the Realists/Pragmatists, In Reagan's second term it was the Realists/Pragmatists. In Reagan's first term it was the NeoCons. For Carter it was the Realists/Pragmatists. For Nixon it was the Realists/Pragmatists.

21 posted on 03/11/2011 5:48:25 AM PST by Ben Ficklin
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To: Ben Ficklin

I think Obama is inept. He waits until the ball drops into the red or black slot and then places his bet. He’s a user with no moral compass. He’s feels so inferior he is incapable of sticking his neck out to do what is needed for anyone else.

Has anyone ever seen him do anything other than what benefits him? He has no redeeming qualities. No one should hold out hope that he will do anything because it is the right thing to do. He’s a grifter. His base is stupid. His enablers are working to destroy a strong America.


22 posted on 03/11/2011 8:11:01 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; ColdOne; Convert from ECUSA; Delacon; ...

Thanks Cincinatus’ Wife.

He’s just an ineffective liar.


23 posted on 03/12/2011 5:25:19 PM PST by SunkenCiv (The 2nd Amendment follows right behind the 1st because some people are hard of hearing.)
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