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Obama: No more Mr. Nice Guy
The President's genial approach to foreign policy flopped in Asia, say critics. Is it time for Obama to get nasty?
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bama's "Mr Nice Guy" foreign policy persona isn't working, says Der Spiegel in a much-referenced editorial. His recent trip to Asia, the German newspaper says, produced "no palpable results," raising the question: Is it time for the President to take a "tougher stance" on overseas allies, channeling George W.Bush instead of Jimmy Carter?

Yes, drop the polite approach:
Obama put his money on "playing nice" in China, says foreign policy expert Elizabeth C. Economy in the Washington Post. The result was "one of the worst U.S. presidential visits to Beijing in memory." Instead of sucking up to the Chinese, the President should "stack the deck" with our "allies" and team up against them. Being nice to China didn't get us anywhere, and "it never has."
"Foreign policy specialists assess Obama's trip to Asia"

It's not Obama's fault:
Obama shouldn't be "castigated" for the Asia trip's "lack of deliverables," says Michael Crowley in the New Republic. Although his policies on Afghanistan and the Middle East have "left a lot to be desired," it can't be denied the President inherited an "incredibly lousy hand" on foreign policy. Thankfully, he has already begun shaking up his foreign policy team.
"Shake the foreign policy team?"

Get out of the spotlight: The "grand strategy" of Obama's foreign policy seems to be impressing "cheering crowds composed of non-Americans", says Christopher Badeaux in the New Ledger. We won't see any progress on "ending nuclear proliferation" or reforming the "international economic system" until this administration's foreign policy becomes centered on America and not Obama himself.
"Obama's foreign policy: shakedown 1979"

Like it or not, Obama is the new Jimmy Carter: Obama wants to be the new Reagan on foreign policy, says David Rothkopf on NPR.com. Instead he is more "commonly associated" with Carter. "Failed policies" in Iraq, "intractable problems" in Afghanistan, and now this latest trip to China indicate that the "balance of power" is "shifting." Although it could fairly be said that Obama's biggest similarity to the "grim little man from Plains" is sharing "really bad timing," it's hard not to feel that he "will not be able to reverse these trends."
"Foreign policy: is there an Obama confidence crisis?"

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