Tags: Barack Obama | Jim Clancy | foreign policy | West Point

CNN's Clancy: Obama's West Point Speech Got 'Icy' Reception

Wednesday, 28 May 2014 05:20 PM

By Cathy Burke

President Barack Obama’s foreign policy speech bombed at West Point, getting a "pretty icy" reception from the graduating cadets, CNN’s international correspondent Jim Clancy says.

Panning the Wednesday address that outlined the Obama administration’s plans for a full troop withdrawal from Afghanistan by 2016, Clancy complained the president picked both the wrong audience and tone.

"It was a philosophical speech," Clancy said in the video posted on Mediaite. "It was not a commander-in-chief speaking to his troops. And you heard the reception. I mean, it was pretty icy."

Clancy didn’t criticize the substance of the speech, but he pointed out it was the kind of address neither the cadets nor their families wanted to hear.

It was "not really a great speech to give at the U.S. Military Academy," Clancy said.

Critics on both the right and left have savaged the foreign policy address.

Sen. John McCain railed that the administration’s foreign policy makes the world "more dangerous and more unstable," while Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson ripped the address as over broad.

"There are individual problems that require individual solutions," Robinson told MSNBC.
"And so that then sort of militates against some sort of sweeping Obama Doctrine that you can sum up in a bumper sticker ... and I don’t think we got one today, frankly.

"He’s against isolationism, but he is interventionist, but not unilateralist. Just because we have the biggest hammer doesn’t mean every problem is a nail. Just because we have the best military doesn’t mean every problem requires intervention."

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