Obama touts foreign policy successes in his address to the United Nations

posted at 12:45 pm on September 21, 2011 by Tina Korbe

In his address to the U.N. General Assembly this morning, the president cited the toppling of Tripoli and the ousting of Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi as the quintessential example of “how the international community is supposed to work.”

“The will of the coalition proved unbreakable, and the will of the Libyan people could not be denied,” Obama said. “Forty-two years of tyranny was ended in six months [by] nations standing together for the sake of peace and security, individuals claiming their rights.”

BHO also mentioned his one unequivocal foreign policy success — the capture and kill of Osama bin Laden — and cast the drawdown of troops from Afghanistan and Iraq as a notable achievement.

“Let there be no doubt: the tide of war is receding,” he said. “When I took office, roughly 180,000 Americans were serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. By the end of this year, that number will be cut in half, and it will continue to decline. This is critical to the sovereignty of Iraq and Afghanistan, and to the strength of the United States as we build our nation at home.”

But, for all the reminders of past triumphs, the theme of the address — “peace is possible in an imperfect world” — still struck a hollow note in light of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ bid for U.N. recognition of an independent Palestinian state, a direct flouting of the president’s pleas for ongoing peace negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis and a development that leaves the U.S. with little option but to erase whatever goodwill we’ve built up with the Mideast of late.

“One year ago,” Obama said, “I stood at this podium and called for an independent Palestine. I believed then – and I believe now – that the Palestinian people deserve a state of their own. But what I also said is that genuine peace can only be realized between Israelis and Palestinians themselves. One year later, despite extensive efforts by America and others, the parties have not bridged their differences.”

In fact, the president’s call for an independent Palestine last year contributed to Abbas’ audacity this year: With his words in support of Palestinian statehood, President Obama unwittingly set himself up to be the star of an ad advocating an independent Palestinian state. Abbas called the comment “Obama’s promise.” But, Obama made doubly clear today, such a promise is not his to make in the first place because only the Israelis and Palestinians can make peace with each other.

“I know that many are frustrated by the lack of progress,” he said. “So am I. But the question isn’t the goal we seek – the question is how to reach it. And I am convinced that there is no short cut to the end of a conflict that has endured for decades. Peace will not come through statements and resolutions at the UN – if it were that easy, it would have been accomplished by now. Ultimately, it is Israelis and Palestinians who must live side by side. Ultimately, it is Israelis and Palestinians – not us – who must reach agreement on the issues that divide them: on borders and security; on refugees and Jerusalem.”

The president said the United States will maintain its “unshakeable” commitment to Israel’s security — but also called for the Israelis and Palestinians to walk in each other’s shoes and sought to legitimize the aspirations of both sides.

The president’s address to the General Assembly today followed a brief speech to the Libya Contact Group Tuesday, in which the president waxed still more enthusiastic about the “courage and collective will” of the international community as regards the Libyan mission.


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I can’t wait for those Chicago Olympics…

Shivas Irons on September 21, 2011 at 12:47 PM

Winner of the Nobel Peace Prize!

Wander on September 21, 2011 at 12:47 PM

Policy successes? Shortest speech ever.

Vashta.Nerada on September 21, 2011 at 12:48 PM

Must have been a short address.

rjoco1 on September 21, 2011 at 12:48 PM

He is such a strong and commanding leader of the not so free world.

myrenovations on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

In fact, the president’s call for an independent Palestine last year contributed to Abbas’ audacity this year

…and it’s a fact because rick perry, noted foreign policy savant, said so.

sesquipedalian on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Does even the UN listen to this bozo anymore?

Vanceone on September 21, 2011 at 12:51 PM

The ONLY foreign policy success he has had is one that he tried to get rid off, and that was increasing of troops. Everything else is a disaster!

ConservativePartyNow on September 21, 2011 at 12:51 PM

He looked like a little dictator up there pounding the podium and lecturing everyone. It was pathetic.

txhsmom on September 21, 2011 at 12:51 PM

So success consists of levying war — without the Constitutionally mandated approval of Congress?

rbj on September 21, 2011 at 12:51 PM

Nothing at all about his triumphs in Syria or Iran?

a capella on September 21, 2011 at 12:52 PM

There is no people on earth less deserving of a country than Israel’s terrorist neighbours. In a sane world they wouldn’t be allowed in New York, they’d be in Gitmo.

mudskipper on September 21, 2011 at 12:52 PM

Days, not weeks has just been extended for another three months.

The Arab Street loves us.

The Europeans love us.

Russia is perfectly content to do as we wish.

The price of energy on a global scale has diminished greatly.

Millions and millions of new green jobs have sprung up all across the globe.

Have I left out any of the foreign policy successes?

coldwarrior on September 21, 2011 at 12:52 PM

Nitwit.

Jaibones on September 21, 2011 at 12:52 PM

Abbas should be watching the US news a little more carefully. If he had, he’d be sure to keep from stepping in the “Obama’s Promise” while he’s out walking in the pasture.

cthulhu on September 21, 2011 at 12:53 PM

Obama being a jerk in photo….

portlandon on September 21, 2011 at 12:54 PM

And here we have him with his trademark “Hey everybody” wave.

No comment from the guy you can’t see.

BobMbx on September 21, 2011 at 12:54 PM

Is this as he is waving on camera in the face of the pres of Mongolia?

upinak on September 21, 2011 at 12:54 PM

And, after Scooter spoke, a recess was called…so all of the delegates could go out in the hall and ROFL.

kingsjester on September 21, 2011 at 12:54 PM

No mention of Iran being ever closer to having the ability to launch a nuclear weapon?

ButterflyDragon on September 21, 2011 at 12:55 PM

No applause during the speech….

Heard a lot of I, I. I in it

cmsinaz on September 21, 2011 at 12:55 PM

The middle east is in the midst of total chaos and collapse; Israel is surrounded by militant islamist nations calling for Her destruction and for Sharia law and the new caliphate to rise.

And obama is happy about this. He is praising himself for this.

Key West Reader on September 21, 2011 at 12:55 PM

portlandon on September 21, 2011 at 12:54 PM

HI! It’s all about ME!

No comment from the guy you can’t see.

BobMbx on September 21, 2011 at 12:54 PM

G. Khan is rolling in his grave.

upinak on September 21, 2011 at 12:55 PM

And here we have him with his trademark “Hey everybody” wave.

No comment from the guy you can’t see.

BobMbx on September 21, 2011 at 12:54 PM

George W Bush took that Photo. It’s his fault.

portlandon on September 21, 2011 at 12:56 PM

BobMbx to the rest of the world:

I’m sorry. I didn’t vote for him. Just hang on for a while longer.

BobMbx on September 21, 2011 at 12:56 PM

Why isn’t there ever any ‘peace negotiations’ between this so-called Palestine and Jordan? Or between all 3?

preallocated on September 21, 2011 at 12:56 PM

It was funny to watch the Palestinian ambassador (?) do a face palm at what Obama said. I can imagine him thinking, “Man, when we gave Obama all that money he told us if we wanted to keep our land, we’d get to keep our land.”

txhsmom on September 21, 2011 at 12:56 PM

Success? He keeps using that word.

I don’t think it means what he thinks it means.

Either that or it is opposite day at the UN.

Lily on September 21, 2011 at 12:57 PM

“This is how the international community is supposed to work.”

I guess we’re happy with the utter chaos in Libya, Egypt, Syrian and Bahrain. Oh Yemen too? Forgot, sorry. It’s a good thing he’s done so well in Afghanistan since he took over with his spiffy new Rules of Engagement. That hasn’t helped to get several hundred soldiers killed. Nope.

Smart power is so …. smart, and powerful.

hawkdriver on September 21, 2011 at 12:58 PM

LOL KJ :)

cmsinaz on September 21, 2011 at 12:58 PM

Peace is hard. lol.

ErnstBlofeld on September 21, 2011 at 12:58 PM

sesquipedalian on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

So are you gonna vote for O’bama next year? Just curious.

Del Dolemonte on September 21, 2011 at 12:59 PM

If his foreign policy is considered a success then I’d hate to see what he considers to be failed U.S. foreign policy.

Yakko77 on September 21, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Rush and I both noticed this odd clanger of a line from his speech:

So this has been a remarkable year. The Qaddafi regime is over. Gbagbo, Ben Ali, Mubarak are no longer in power. Osama bin Laden is gone, and the idea that change could only come through violence has been buried with him.

Did the Navy Seals play old Obama speeches and talk Osama to death? That would have been cruel.

Drained Brain on September 21, 2011 at 1:01 PM

So are you gonna vote for O’bama next year? Just curious.

Del Dolemonte on September 21, 2011 at 12:59 PM

Are you sure you aren’t thinking about ernesto and ProudRino?

upinak on September 21, 2011 at 1:01 PM

…and it’s a fact because rick perry, noted foreign policy savant, said so.

sesquipedalian on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

So you don’t think Obama’s “Arab Spring” had anything to do with this?

portlandon on September 21, 2011 at 1:02 PM

Is the tide of war being held back by the arc of history?

MayBee on September 21, 2011 at 1:05 PM

O/T: Breaking
Moodys downgrading B of A……close your stocks out folks.

Rovin on September 21, 2011 at 1:05 PM

What an embarrassment! Wonder how many in the General Assembly were snickering….

ultracon on September 21, 2011 at 1:06 PM

One year later, despite extensive efforts by America and others, the parties have not bridged their differences.”

I’m trying to think what extensive efforts those would be.

scalleywag on September 21, 2011 at 1:06 PM

In fact, the president’s call for an independent Palestine last year contributed to Abbas’ audacity this year

…and it’s a fact because rick perry, noted foreign policy savant, said so.

sesquipedalian on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Right . . . just ignore the fact that Abbas himself has basically said so (and is using Barry’s “promise” about a Palestinian state in commercials there).

All Perry did was state an obvious fact about the foolish, inept, and counter-productive conduct of your idol Barry. Your disdain for Perry doesn’t make his correct observation of that fact any less true.

AZCoyote on September 21, 2011 at 1:07 PM

There should have been a show of hands for how many in the audience actually took everything he had to say seriously.

pilamaye on September 21, 2011 at 1:07 PM

Obama touts foreign policy successes in his address to the United Nations

This is worth another VDH’s essay starting with

“Let me count the ways…..”

Sir Napsalot on September 21, 2011 at 1:08 PM

Did the Navy Seals play old Obama speeches and talk Osama to death? That would have been cruel.

Drained Brain on September 21, 2011 at 1:01 PM

Hahaha, there’s nothing violent about shooting a guy in the face and dumping him in the sea for the fish to feed on his remains. /

scalleywag on September 21, 2011 at 1:09 PM

They need to walk in each other’s shoes.

Does this mean the Palestinians won’t agree with Jewish aspirations until they suffer their own holocaust? No, I’m not advocating such but the equivalency suggested by Obama is grossly moronic. There is nothing in this world quite so pathetic as those who oppose a safe homeland for the Jews. That includes historically ignorant fools like Obama.

Basilsbest on September 21, 2011 at 1:09 PM

There should have been a show of hands for how many in the audience actually took everything he had to say seriously.

pilamaye on September 21, 2011 at 1:07 PM

There was a show of hands pilamaye………..

Rovin on September 21, 2011 at 1:10 PM

…and it’s a fact because rick perry, noted foreign policy savant, said so.

sesquipedalian on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Him and Abbas.

lorien1973 on September 21, 2011 at 1:11 PM

OT- and while it’s on my mind. How is it that after the Japan tsunami the Japan economy is growing and the Yen is getting stronger, but it is used as an excuse for the American economy tanking?

rjoco1 on September 21, 2011 at 1:11 PM

rjoco1 on September 21, 2011 at 1:11 PM

Cuz you’re racist. That’s how.

lorien1973 on September 21, 2011 at 1:14 PM

“Forty-two years of tyranny was ended in six months ”

Hooray, it’s a success.

“days, not weeks”

Well, except he couldn’t figure out the size, scope, cost, timeframe, effort, difficulty, or manner of this… and never took anything even vaguely bordering on a leadership role in this at any time when it was happening.

But except for failing every possible analysis, not doing anything correct, and not actually doing anything at all with regards to the action.. he did a good job.

And because he stayed the heck away from it, it eventually sort of succeeded, just not as promised, expected, or intended.

Congratulations; you’re a miserable failure at any for of analysis, leadership, or management… hooray for Obama.

gekkobear on September 21, 2011 at 1:14 PM

sesquipedalian on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Ok…but what do you think about Solyndra? Fast and Furious? Light Squared? Hmmmmmmmmmmm?

capejasmine on September 21, 2011 at 1:16 PM

(Obama) called for the Israelis and Palestinians to walk in each other’s shoes and sought to legitimize the aspirations of both sides.

Better said as:

Take away Palestinian’s guns, there’d be peace; take away Israel’s guns, there’d be no Israel.

Fallon on September 21, 2011 at 1:17 PM

Huh?

chicken thief on September 21, 2011 at 1:18 PM

Will Barry still be counting Libya among his foreign policy “successes” in a few months if an AQ-supporting government of Islamic fundamentalists is imposing sharia law and training terrorists? Stay tuned . . . .

AZCoyote on September 21, 2011 at 1:19 PM

*****WAVING*****

SouthernGent on September 21, 2011 at 1:19 PM

…and it’s a fact because rick perry, noted foreign policy savant, said so.

sesquipedalian on September 21, 2011 at 12:50 PM

The Wave, as it will forever be known, getting to the furious defenders of the Chicago machine?

Here’s how it works, child. It’s a fact because the dumb@$$ it takes, to adequately represent leftist garbage such as yourself, called for Palestinian statehood, based on 1967 borders, not because of something Rick Perry said, or didn’t say.

Personality is everything, with you OTard cultists, isn’t it?

/wave

MNHawk on September 21, 2011 at 1:24 PM

And now, Scooter is trying to hide his pro-Palestinian stance, by telling Palestinians to slow down in their quest for their own country, because he’s down to 60% approval among Jewish Americans.

Smart Power!

kingsjester on September 21, 2011 at 1:27 PM

…the tide of war is receding

This means we can expect Obama to get us into another Middle East war within a year. The left is so gullible to believe he’s an anti-war president.

TulsAmerican on September 21, 2011 at 1:27 PM

OT- and while it’s on my mind. How is it that after the Japan tsunami the Japan economy is growing and the Yen is getting stronger, but it is used as an excuse for the American economy tanking?

rjoco1 on September 21, 2011 at 1:11 PM

..add to that a few weeks ago they had a *real* cat 3 hurricane (typhoon — not a media-frenzied hyper-izzle like Irene) that dumped tons of water on them and Shizuoka prefecture (and eventually) Tokyo will bear the brunt of yet another massive typhoon.

My guess is that they just STFU and get the job done. Oh yes, and, in between the tsunami and the typhoons and the recovery, they flushed *their* POS prime minister as well.

The War Planner on September 21, 2011 at 1:28 PM

hawkdriver on September 21, 2011 at 12:58 PM

But you’re forgetting that Iran no longer responds to our open hand with a clenched fist. Or that Turkey is resisting the tide of Jihad and Islamic fundamentalism. Or that Lebanon is free from the domination of Syrian tyranny and Hezbollah terrorists. Or that Syria has turned a leaf in their regard for human rights.

Oh never mind.

MJBrutus on September 21, 2011 at 1:38 PM

PBHO should propose building more greenhouses in Gaza, that way when their statehood vote is shot down, the Pals will again have something to destroy.

Bishop on September 21, 2011 at 1:39 PM

Did anyone listen to Rush at the top of his show?

Apparently, he wrote a piece some years back, and Obama plagarized it today, in his speech. I’m waiting for the transcript to go up…but I find that interesting. Would Obama use Rush’s words to convince independents, and republicans he’s a moderate, or would he do it, thinking he’d never get caught?

Either way, Obama using work from Rush is kinda weird, isn’t it? LOL

capejasmine on September 21, 2011 at 1:39 PM

He not only said to walk in each other’s shoe’s, but to see the world through each other’s eyes. The thing is, Israel has seen the world through Palestinian eyes and they see Israel being driven into the Mediterranean.

vcferlita on September 21, 2011 at 1:40 PM

Days, not weeks has just been extended for another three months.

Have I left out any of the foreign policy successes?

coldwarrior on September 21, 2011 at 12:52 PM

Yes.

He ‘promised’ no US personnel will be involved on the ground in Lybia.

Sir Napsalot on September 21, 2011 at 1:43 PM

rjoco1 on September 21, 2011 at 1:11 PM

very good question

cmsinaz on September 21, 2011 at 1:47 PM

Fewer pages in this speech than the book “French Military Victories”.

Bishop on September 21, 2011 at 1:47 PM

…a quick glance around the assembly showed all the delegates playing Angry Birds on their iTouches.

Alden Pyle on September 21, 2011 at 1:51 PM

Let’s see what Libya looks like in six or twelve months. I’m guessing not very good.

Ward Cleaver on September 21, 2011 at 2:10 PM

rjoco1 on September 21, 2011 at 1:11 PM

Because it hurt our economy, it can’t hurt both countries. / /

Cindy Munford on September 21, 2011 at 2:16 PM

“Forty-two years of tyranny was ended in six months

So that explains the NATO announcement that we’ll be hanging around Libya for another 3 months.

I’m surprised Barry mentioned SIX MONTHS. Wasn’t this going to “take days, not weeks”?

GarandFan on September 21, 2011 at 2:19 PM

Obama opposes the new Palistinian State…

Well, I guess that calls for congratulations to the Palisian people for thier newly established state…

RedSoxNation on September 21, 2011 at 2:40 PM

…Obama goes after Gaddafi while Iran, the worlds most dangerous,terrorist supporting regime and responsible for the deaths of thousands of Americans, is practically assured of getting a nuclear bomb.

Only the ignorant consider this “success”.

Baxter Greene on September 21, 2011 at 2:50 PM

Palis want their own state? Let’s give them California…we’re not using it, right?

Wyznowski on September 21, 2011 at 3:00 PM

GarandFan on September 21, 2011 at 2:19 PM

And has tyranny ended there? Looks to me as though they simply exchanged tyrants.

MJBrutus on September 21, 2011 at 3:12 PM

despite extensive efforts by America and others, the parties have not bridged their differences.”

I must be losing it, I can’t think of any extensive efforts on the part of Mr. President to help the parties bridge their differences.

scalleywag on September 21, 2011 at 5:16 PM

A speech by president Blowhard that plagiarized Rush, jumped from quoting the Bible to Truman, walked a mile in my moccasins, repeated himself over and over with ‘peace is hard’ was nothing short of a total embarrassment to this country.

Kissmygrits on September 21, 2011 at 7:04 PM