Obama's dangerous Middle East naivete

It hasn’t worked out that way. Since 2009, the percentages of Middle Easterners who have a favorable opinion of America, and of President Obama, have declined by 40 percent and 37 percent, respectively, according to Pew’s annual poll. …

Often, the only choices we have in the Muslim world are between bad and worse. Gadhafi was, and Mr. Assad is, a supporter of terrorism. But they’re secular dictators who accepted limits ignored by ardent jihadists. …

President Carter learned the hard way that Islamists lie to nonbelievers. There is, alas, little indication that Mr. Obama has learned anything from the events of the last three years. The utter failure to date of his outreach efforts hasn’t shaken Mr. Obama’s confidence that the force of his personality will convert Islamists into democrats.