His three- country "jaunt" was meant to show off his foreign competency. It began with his angering the Brits, over comments about Britain's preparedness for the Olympics, hoping to draw attention to his role in the successful Utah Winter Olympics, forcing "fast and furious" criticism from the Prime Minister, the Mayor of London, the media and the British people. Not since WW11, were the Brits so united. His next stop, Israel, was supposed to be easy and ego- satisfying, but here again he got in the way of his message by making statements about Israeli culture being superior to the Palestinians' allowing Israel's economy to thrive and the Palestinians' to suffer. Charges of racism followed and what was supposed to be a "love-in" with PM Netanyahu, speaking to a very receptive audience and raising lots of money, became another "foot -in the mouth" fiasco. He then went to Poland , where he hoped to capitalize on President Osama's not going through with the anti-missile system, (thus, in his words, humiliating the Pole and Czechs). The Poles were gracious but in global poll, in June ,conducted by the Pew Foundation showed that they favour Obama by a 5 to 3 margin, which was even higher among the Czechs, 6 to 1. In the USA, a poll was released by NBC and the Wall Street Journal showing Obama a head by 15% "on handling foreign policy". Romney has been accusing Obama of angering allies and emboldening enemies. This is not true. The Pew Foundation released one of its global polls in June which showed "trust' in Obama is overwhelmingly positive. In Britain it was 80% ( compared to GW Bush's 16% in 2008). Approval ratings are much higher. Allies are not angry. They are relieved that Obama has followed a consistent, multi-lateral policy and has consulted with them unlike the gung ho unilateralism of W ( allowing NATO to take the lead in Libya, for instance). The only ones who are angry at Obama's foreign policy are Russia, China and certain Arab countries, the Arabs, over what is seen as a pro-Israel bias and the use of drones in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Yemen. The world is not more dangerous and America's enemies are weaker. al Qaeda has been decapitated and decimated by the killing of top leaders and the use of the drones. Most Americans recognize this but Romney continue this old Republican line, which has worked in the past. This is mere bluster and a failure on the part of Romney's foreign policy team and more so of Romney, for not recognizing this. Obama is entering this election with a foreign policy advantage. Romney continues to be dogged by flip-flops and now more worryingly, by refusal to disclose his tax returns, something his father started when he ran for the presidency in 1968 (he disclosed 12 years of his tax returns). Is Senate majority leader Harry Reid right, when he said a "very reliable"source, a former Bain Capital investor, told him that Romney had not paid taxes for 10 years? Even top Republicans, most recently Ed Rollins are calling for Romney to "release more taxes. Absolutely" The race is on and with the economy showing signs of continuing improvement, Obama has only to avoid any big blunders/ scandals and he will be re-elected. Of course, if Romney continues to be in the way of his message, continues to offer only bluster and continues to refuse to release his taxes, then it is all over except for the formalities. Usually, October is the key and may still be. Romney has tens of millions $ and many backers who have a vested interest in defeating Obama, so there is still a race.
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(Fig 2a) The Death of Innocents
Ishwar R. Prashad recently retired from over 47 years of teaching.