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In 'Obama’s Globe' Bruce Herschensohn Explains the Mess We Are In

Author, conservative thinker and university professor Bruce Herschensohn has been a voice in conservative thinking on American foreign policy for some 50 years. After a career that includes working with William F. Buckley, Jr. at U.S.I.A., serving as Deputy Special Assistant to President Nixon, and as a member of President Reagan’s transition team, Herschensohn gets it.

Bruce HerschensohnFrom his position teaching at Pepperdine University’s School of Public Policy, Herschensohn surveyed the first 1200 days of Barack Obama’s presidency in his new book, Obama’s Globe, and came to the conclusion that “the foreign policy changes he initiated would be difficult to imagine” under the administration of any other president all the way from Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt to the most recent Republican administration of President George W. Bush.

And the primary reason Herschensohn sees for that vast deviation from our post-World War II leadership in world affairs is that under Obama, we no longer treat friends as friends and adversaries as adversaries – or even seem able to distinguish which is which.

While Herschensohn literally covers the globe, from Britain and Europe to the Middle East to China and the Far East, this is a particularly useful insight to keep in mind as one tries to figure out exactly what Obama’s policy is in the Middle East.

To Obama, Egypt is not our ally.  To his State Department Egypt is our ally. To the American taxpayers, who have pumped billions of dollars in aid and loans into Egypt, Egypt sure as heck SHOULD be our ally.

In the chapters on the Middle East in Obama’s Globe, Bruce Herschensohn explains how Obama set in motion the present mess in the Middle East by abandoning Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, and other U.S. allies, for the completely unknown consequences of the “Arab Spring.”

Herschensohn’s argument is not that Mubarak was all good, but rather that the alternative, being completely unknown, was the riskier choice – especially given that Mubarak was a staunch ally of the United States in the war against radical Islamists.

Of course, supporting democracy is a long-standing American foreign policy principle. However, in Herschensohn’s analysis, the disaster in the Middle East we face today, including the recent killings of American diplomats in Libya, were set in motion by trading the imperfect ally in the war with radical Islamists – Mubarak – for the complete unknown.

In Herschensohn’s view, this is a strategy that no other wartime president, not FDR, not Truman, not Reagan or Bush 41 or 43 would have chosen, because they would have understood who the real enemy in Egypt is – radical Islam.

Those of a libertarian bent might find Obama’s Globe to lean a little too heavily toward neo-con interventionism for their taste. We disagree. Bruce Herschensohn’s Obama’s Globe isn’t a pitch for interventionism; it is a reminder of exactly who our enemies are and how much Barack Obama has done to embolden them.

Bruce Herschensohn’s Obama’s Globe is available online through Amazon or at your favorite book seller, it is definitely a must read for anyone wishing to understand why America seems more alone in the world now than it has ever been.

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Herschensohn is Right!


In response to nikkibj97:

Bruce Herschensohn has advised Presidents and other leaders for approximately 50 years.  His knowledge on foreign policy is almost unmatched.  Try reading his bio - and his writings over the decades.  You might learn something.

Herschensohn on the so-called "occupied territories" of Palestine in 2010: “You cannot occupy any territory whose people never had jurisdiction over that territory.  They never had it.  Ever.  So how can you occupy it?  Let me just go back.  Before Israel had it — and they got it from the ’67 war, after Jordan invaded — Jordan had it for 19 years.  And they invaded it, they just took it.  That was in 1948, so that was ’48 through ’67, 19 years.

"And Egypt had jurisdiction over Gaza, same period of time.  Before they had that, Great Britain had it.  Before Great Britain had it, the Ottoman Empire of Turkey had it.  Before that were the Crusades, and before that was Rome.  And now I’m back to biblical days.  And in all honesty, I don’t know what was going on there before then.  But they never had the land.  And I think that Israel’s greatest mistake was right after the tremendous victory of that Six-Day War.  It called it ‘administered territory.’  And of course, that became world-known as ‘occupied territory.’  Israel should’ve called the territory that they won — they should’ve called it Israel.”

And from a Newsmax article from 2002: “Herschensohn is convinced that if Israel had never existed, there would still be the same turmoil in the area, because the turmoil ‘has everything to do with the disunity of the neighboring leaders who want to take over each other.’

“He describes how ‘Iraq wants to take over Iran. Iran wants to take over Iraq. Iran wants to take over all of the Persian Gulf. So does Iraq. Sudan would like to take over Chad. Sudan would like to take over Egypt. Yemen would like to take over Oman. Syria has taken Lebanon and has its eyes on Jordan.’ ”

Learn your history.  These people have been fighting for centuries – long before the existence of Israel.  Israel is not the problem.  Radical Islamists are the problem.

We don’t need to be the “World’s Policeman.”  We simply need to stop throwing our allies under the bus and empowering our enemies.  A good place to start would be to withhold all foreign aid to countries that are not loyal to us. 



 Herschensohn is a Nixon Republican and I don't dispute his credentials, but I'm always weary of Jewish Americans writers and their versions of events in the middle east. 

I would add one more episode to your history lesson and that is; according to Genesis it was Joshua who crossed the Jordan with his army to take the promised land. It appears like the big realtor in the sky forgot to inform the inhabitants that he was re-assigning their lands to the new nomads.

 To keep our conversation current at least to 1948 in which again I have to restate for you these were not vacant lands they (the Jews) had to take them by force, hundreds of thousands of Palestinian lost their homes to the invaders.

The fact that Palestine transfered to various powers thru time is no justification for the current occupation ( not my contention but it's how the Arabs feel about it ). The acquesition of Palestine by these powers never involved removing it's population.

Your contention that Palestinians never had jurisdiction is ludicrous, one example is my state of Texas it's been under six flags, but it's the same people we've been here for centuries.

 Very magnanimous of you in re-assigning lands that don't belong to Isreal, the 67 war did not settle the issue by any stretch of your imagination. Unfortunately Israel will never be able to live in peace those Arabs don't want it there and I believe they will fight from here to eternity or the last Arab. I once heard an Arab say; "you have the time pieces but we have the time" I take it that they are determined.

I am an American concerned with American issues that effect our people and that does not include Israel nor the Arabs for that matter. 

As I've said before, Netanyahu should be peading his case to the UN not us.

We don't need Israel as an ally we've already given enough, the world trade center with 3 thousand American lifes lost was because of our support for Israel and not because as Bush said "they hate our freedoms" they don't understand our our freedoms (generally speaking) all they know is that our government vetoes at the UN any sanctions against Israel when they commit atrocities, remember the massacre by Sharon at Sabra and Chatila in Lebanon to name one of many such incidents.

Before you try to lecture me again keep in mind not all Americans are on board with the Jewish State. 

Naive Americans Will Be The Death Of US

" re-assigning lands that don't belong to Isreal [sic]"  

These lands absolutely belong to Israel.  We don't expect any other country that acquired land in a war to return it. Asking Israel to do so is ludicrous!  Did we ask North Vietnam to return South Vietnam? Is America planning to return the Southwest to Mexico?

Again, the focus of Herschensohn's book is simply to stop abandoning our allies and empowering our enemies. The fact that you choose to focus soley on Israel is telling.  


Who's "we" certainly not me nor you, I don't have a dog in this fight as I stated in my last response.

The facts are the Palestinians are still fighting for their lands thats what I meant by saying the conflict over this matter is not over and their Arab neighbors agree with them.

No, we don't ask Vietnam such a question their conflict has been resolved they merged and they (the north) did not relocate or expelled populations. Mexico is not asking for returns either. But sir the Palestinians are, they want their lands back and they pay for their believes with their lives.

I feel you may have glossed over my comments, this is a thorny issue to discuss because there are many Jewish supporters in America that argue in favor of the Jewish state, and ready to attack anyone who offers an unfavorable opnion which seems to be the case here.

To use your words that I [ focus solely on Israel is telling ] I don't have a clear pic of what you're saying. But regarding Mr. Herschensohns book all I did was state the obvious, his contention that president Obama is throwing Israel under a bus is pure propoganda. Didn't president Obama just authorized 70 million dollars for Israels defense system. 

Tell me sir, what do I as a taxpayer get in return for all this aid? Do you think of it like the lands that never get returned? We Americans will never see any benefits with this alliance. Remember Desert Storm none of our allies would allow our military on their soil nor have use of their air space iincluding Israel, so what the hell do we need them for? They are more of a liability than an asset.

It's a matter for the UN as I've said before. Heck, I've just heard Romney in a recording he believes this conflict is unsolvable , it's the only truthful thing thats come out of this mans mouth. 

Our president took the right path, he didn't throw Netanyahu under a bus he merely stopped him in his tracks he did not come here on business or humanitarian issues he was here wanting us to go to war on his behalf he said "wait for what,  wait for how long" this is what I mean when I say he makes my blood boil. If you are an American and care for our country you should feel much the same as me. 

Let's Stop Empowering Our Enemies

Again, the Palestinians NEVER had control of these lands.  And just because a loser in a war wants land given to them, that's not how it works.  And, in fact, there are Latino groups demanding that the Southwest be returned to them.  

Your previous claim that the Islamist radicals attacked us on 9/11 because of our support for Israel holds no water in light of the recent attacks in the Mid East.  You couldn't ask for a US President that is less supportive of Israel and more supportive of the Muslim Brotherhood and yet the attacks continue.

And if being "offended" gives one the right to attack and kill, then Christians and Jews and all Americans can rightly demand that we destroy these Islamist radicals.

What do you as a taxpayer get in return for all of the foreign aid we send to our enemies?

You say you don't want us to be the "world's policeman."  Unfortunately, our support of our enemies creates most of the turmoil in the world.  So first we need to stop empowering - and funding - our enemies.

I don't know whether you are naive or if your hatred of Israel simply clouds your judgment.  But the radical Islamists have made it clear that we are their enemy and they hope to destroy us.  Yet so many of you demand that we stop aid to Israel without making the same demand of stopping aid to our enemies.

By the way, a number of your comments sound like those of Ron Paul supporters.  If this is the case, I'd like to make a point: At the beginning of his career, Ron Paul had credibility and many people were willing to look at his arguments.  However, comments and actions of his more recent supporters have DESTROYED his credibility and now his arguments are ridiculed.  These "supporters" have done more to damage Ron Paul and his views than his enemies ever could.  Congratulations. 


Muddled Thinking

I find your thoughts muddled, Palestinians have lived in Palestine for thousands of years in denying that fact tells me you can't face the reality on the ground. Politics and wars have changed hands but they are born there and die there.

I don't engage in stating conjecture nor subject myself to propaganda. I'm neither naive nor partisan I point out historical facts, I've already said this to you; I'm concerned with what's best for our country.

Concerning our Southwest there is a big difference we don't have suicide bombers nor rockets being launched, emm where would they fire them anyway Idaho! Iowa?  9/11 is the culmination of years of frustration feeling the helplessness the fruitless efforts of fighting with stones against tanks having bombs drop on their heads with American made fighter jets, standing there impotent seeing their homes razed by American made Caterpillers. 

 Here's where you really get confused we give Israel 3 billion dollars a year and 2-21/2 billion to your Muslim enemies (Egypt) and you're still unhappy. You see by giving aid to countries in the middleeast we keep them off Israels back instead of complaining you should count your blessing, as for me you're getting heavy. But you should be aware we're having fiscal problems here at home the figures I keep hearing we have a 16 trillion debt I personally believe we have to cut foreign aid all of it.

You came to this site to post your opinion but overly sensitive when challenged you make an assumption that I hate Israel nothing could be farther from the truth, I view the conflict dispassionedly and I discuss it with you the same way. Another assumption is that I'm an advocate of Ron Paul I'm not but I find it amusing.

I'm speaking from a historical perspective and as an American concerned that Israelis and their supporters here in our country work feverishly to drag us into a war with Iran. It brakes my heart to see our young men & women returning from war crippeled without limbs where is your compassion for them. Dare I say you have none your concern is concentrated with Israel. Are you even American?    

Stop Funding Our Enemies

The Palestinians have never controlled these lands, yet you suggest they be given to them (unlike the Latinos demanding the lands of the Southwest) because they have suicide bombers and rockets?  Giving into terrorists is a really bad idea.  And Native Americans have lived in America for thousands of years.  Are you prepared to give our lands to them?  (And, unlike the Palestinians, the Native Americans actually controlled those lands.)

Yes, blame America - not the Isamist radicals - for 9/11.  For those remarks alone, few people will ever take your arguments seriously.  And how do you explain the fact that Muslims have been attacking and conquering non-Muslim countries for centuries?  Long before Israel or even America existed.

Again, we don't need to fight wars or even give financial aid to our allies if we would just stop empowering and funding our enemies.  So, call on our government to first stop funding our enemies and then, perhaps, people might take you seriously when you call on them to stop funding our allies.

No need for further posts on this subject from me.  Your repeated comments blaming America for 9/11 tell me and the other readers all we need to know.  Maybe you can go on an apology tour with Obama.

Last Words

I see you want to have the last word because you have nothing new to contribute. All you have are worn-out arguments. You're glossing over my points my only interest is disengagement from the middle east. And that word terrorists is so trite. The raw fact is they are fighting what they percieve is an occupation and no denial on your part no matter what hypthosis you put forth, they don't care, that should be obvious to you and to us Americans too.

 My comments about 9/11 are raw facts, not blame thats another matter.

I expressed my opinion you heard me I thank you. I'm just an ordinary working American who see's my country on the wrong course with this conflict. I only advocate a new paradigm for our policy advisors to change course the present one is nothing but a dead end.   

Political hack

He we go again, another political hack with a book on Monday morning quarterbacking, not worth the paper it's written on. It's central theme is predictable " It's Obama's fault " what else can you expect from a right-winger.

The reality is, if we stop supporting Israel just ask them to go across the pond to the Brits incorporate their support, after all it was the Brits who signed the Balfor Declaration to parcel out Palestin to the Jews, lets hand over their mess back to them and our problems with the Arab world will disappear.

I wouldn't mind our country taking a timeout for reflection and recuperation of our resources and instead use those resources to upgrade our infrastructure. 

We don't have to be the worlds policemen, I was under the impression that's why we instituted the United Nations for. Let Natenyahu ask the UN to bomb Iran for them or better yet they should go at it alone. We are war weary. 

I believe we are a mighty nation, we fear no one. Even if Iran builds a nuke they are not irrational should they lob one at a neighbor they'd be wiped off the planet the world knows it and we don't have to be wielding a club over the people of Middle East to protect these expansionists.