Obama and the Great Arab Revolt

Obama and the Great Arab Revolt

We may never know whether the conjecture of the historian Fouad Ajami is correct: that President Barack Obama sought the approval of the Arab League for the air war against Muammar Qaddafi because he thought the league—an organization that has always shown greater sympathy for the region’s rulers than for its citizenry—would turn down the French-led request to unleash Western airpower to save Benghazi. President Obama has certainly seemed sincere, if not Kennedyesque, in his intent to save the rebels in the eastern half of the country from the depredations of the most Orwellian strongman in the Middle East. But his sincerity rests in constant tension with the core tenet of a developing Obama Doctrine: American hegemony is not a good thing, either for the United States or for the world.

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