Obama called most hated American president in Great Britain since Nixon

It’s in an article at a website with the unrevealing name, Associated Content:

Obama Most Hated American President in Great Britain Since Nixon
Mark Whittington
Published June 17, 2010
“Smart Diplomacy” Does Its Work

If one believes Nile Gardiner, President Barack Obama has made himself the most hated, despised American President in Great Britain since Richard Nixon. The problem goes beyond Obama’s trashing of BP over the Gulf oil leak disaster. According to Gardiner:

“The key catalyst for rising anti-Obama sentiment in the UK has been his disastrous handling of the BP issue, and his relentless desire to crush Britain’s biggest company. There is no doubting BP’s responsibility over the Gulf oil disaster, and it is right that the firm is being held to account for its failures. But the brutal, almost sadistic trashing of BP by the imperious Obama administration, which has helped wipe out about half its value, threatens its very future, as well as the pensions of 18 million British people and the jobs of 29,000 Americans. There is now the very real danger of the bankrupting of a great British enterprise, and the prospect even of a Chinese or Russian takeover.

“Instead of adopting a constructive, statesmanlike approach, Barack Obama’s decision to launch a ‘boot on the throat’ campaign, while adopting a thinly veiled Brit-bashing agenda, has generated significant bad blood in America’s closest ally. At the same time, the president has inexplicably rejected offers of help from the UK and an array of European countries, no doubt out of both pride and protectionism.”

When Obama was running for President, one of his campaign themes was how then-President George W. Bush had wrecked relations with America’s friends and that how he, Obama, would restore those relations through “smart diplomacy.” President Obama seems to have instead adopted a stance of deliberately insulting America’s traditional allies, especially Great Britain.

Gardiner continues:

“But this is not the whole picture. President Obama’s handling of BP is part of a far bigger problem. This is an administration that has consistently insulted Britain, and has even sided with her foes in some cases, most notably in its wholehearted support for Argentina’s call for negotiations over the sovereignty of the Falklands, a position that has been strongly backed by Venezuelan tyrant Hugo Chavez. Time and time again, the Obama team has undercut America’s key allies, from London to Prague to Jerusalem, while kowtowing to the enemies of the United States in the name of engagement. It is a disastrous foreign policy that not only weakens American global power, but generates resentment and anger in nations that have traditionally stood shoulder to shoulder with America.”

Why is President Obama doing this? Partly, Obama’s anti-Britain stance seems to derive from a personal dislike of Great Britain and her people. His trashing of BP is also motivated by both an antipathy toward capitalism in general, and oil companies in specific, plus a desire to shift blame from his administration for its mishandling of the oil disaster. That Obama’s strategy also hurts British investors, many of whom depend on BP dividends as part of their pensions, does not enter into his considerations. The number of people harmed by Obama administration policies, ranging from suddenly laid-off aerospace workers to senior citizens who can’t find doctors who will take Medicare, are legion.

One is wondering now if the people of Great Britain, who had once looked down upon George W. Bush as a “cowboy,” are now missing the man from Crawford yet. It must be so, and not just in Great Britain.

[end of article]

I posted this piece because I found its account of Britain’s resentment over Obama’s bullying of BP and his insulting behavior toward Britain to be interesting. But that last line about people “missing Bush” is a sign that the piece is just another instance of the endless partisan kneejerk Obama bashing that now seems to be the full time occupation of the “right.” The notion of anyone missing the disastrous Bush and wanting him back is obscene. To the extent that conservatives utter such a sentiment, they show that they have learned nothing from the calamitous Bush years and would do it all again if they had the chance.

- end of initial entry -

June 19

An Indian living in the West writes:

My only gripe: why compare him to Nixon? And why should the Brits hate Nixon? What did he ever do against Britain? There is no comparison in fact between Obama and Richard Nixon. For all his faults (and he had them like all human beings), Nixon was one of the most intelligent and far-sighted presidents America has ever had. It is sad to see non-Liberals buy into the media’s relentless war against Richard Nixon (a war which did not end with his resignation but was intensified even more after he resigned). The reds in the media never forgave Nixon for his relentless hounding of Communists in the 1950s. He paid the ultimate price for it.

The more I’ve read about Nixon with a clear and unbiased mind, the more I am impressed by the sheer breadth of knowledge he possessed and his instincts in politics. Comparing him to Obama is like comparing Homer to a sixth rate novel writer in the 21st century.

And before someone accuses me of siding with Nixon the anti-Semite, I can only repeat what Golda Meir said about him: that he was the best friend Israel has had in its history. Compare him with Obama and the contrast couldn’t be greater.

LA replies:
Some responses. First, I do not agree that Nixon’s flaws were simply like those of other presidents, a statement that has the intention of downplaying his criminality. He unleashed an atmosphere in the White House in which his underlings were encouraged to believe that there were no limits on what they could do. In the Watergate coverup, he intended to commit criminal acts and he committed them. There was a deep darkness in Nixon and it should be not covered up or relativized.

Second, while Nixon was certainly a far-sighted strategic thinker in foreign policy, his strategy vis a vis the Soviet Union was to accommodate it. This was his policy of détente. Reagan, not considered Nixon’s equal or even near equal in intelligence and knowledge of the world , saw fundamental truths that Nixon never saw or dreamed of: that Soviet Communism was evil; that it was not sustainable; and that, if opposed and morally condemned instead of accommodated, it would collapse from within. Reagan consciously and deliberately rejected the Nixon-Kissinger policy of détente, and helped bring down the Soviet system.

Third, even if we leave aside Nixon’s vital help to Israel in the Yom Kippur war, I don’t think it would be fair to call him an anti-Semite. He saw how over and over Jews were on the left and were in the forefront of those who hated and demonized him. His negative statements in private conversation about Jews were made in that context; he did not attack or oppose the Jewish people as such. He was not an anti-Semite.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at June 17, 2010 07:27 PM | Send

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