New York Times Declares Obama A Failure
Obama snatches defeat from the jaws of victory in Iraq.
With Mr. Allawi, a secular Shiite and the leader of a bloc with broad Sunni support, the Obama administration calculated, Iraq would have a more inclusive government and would check the worrisome drift toward authoritarianism under Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki.But Mr. Obama did not make the sale.“They were afraid what would happen if the different groups of Iraq did not reach an agreement,” recalled Mr. Talabani, who turned down the request.Mr. Obama has pointed to the American troop withdrawal last year as proof that he has fulfilled his promise to end the Iraq war. Winding down a conflict, however, entails far more than extracting troops.In the case of Iraq, the American goal has been to leave a stable and representative government, avoid a power vacuum that neighboring states and terrorists could exploit and maintain sufficient influence so that Iraq would be a partner or, at a minimum, not an opponent in the Middle East.But the Obama administration has fallen frustratingly short of some of those objectives.