The Daily Caller Quotes FPI Policy Director Robert Zarate on President Obama's Foreign Policy

In "Obama’s Foreign Policy: Oklahoma Crimes, Deforestation And L.A. Clippers," The Daily Caller's White House Correspondent Neil Munro writes:

Obama’s foray into palm-oil politics was one of several occasions in recent months where the president’s domestic priorities have played a walk-on role in his foreign policy pitches....

“If the president goes on rhetorical bird-walk and doesn’t focus on the issue at hand, it’s worrisome, because both our friends and allies are listening,” said Robert Zarate, the policy director at the D.C.-based Foreign Policy Initiative.

The diversions “look weird,” he said, and “feed the fears of many people that the president is improvising as he goes along, as opposed to advancing a coherent strategy to achieve clear objectives.”

“What Americans and America’s allies want to see is focus and follow-through,” Zarate said. “Bottom line, he’d prefer to be talking about domestic policy than foreign policy.”

That emphasis on domestic priorities was underlined in Obama’s unsubtle efforts to show support for his critical domestic gay and lesbian supporters by championing legal rights and increased social status for the small population of Russian gays, who face routine ostracism and threats of violence.

His advocacy is colliding with the Russian government’s speculative efforts to reverse its population decline, including curbs on advocacy for Western-style gay rights. Russia’s population decline is a fundamental issue for Russians, who fought two generation-destroying wars in in the 20th century, and who now face fast-growing Muslims and Chinese populations to their south and east.

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The Foreign Policy Initiative seeks to promote an active U.S. foreign policy committed to robust support for democratic allies, human rights, a strong American military equipped to meet the challenges of the 21st century, and strengthening America’s global economic competitiveness.
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