Tags: lech walesa | obama | america | leadership

Lech Walesa: Obama Has Failed, 'America no Longer Leads the World'

Image: Lech Walesa: Obama Has Failed, 'America no Longer Leads the World'

Wednesday, 01 Jan 2014 07:52 PM

By Cathy Burke

The Nobel Peace Prize-winning former president of Poland, Lech Walesa, says President Obama has failed to reclaim America's role as a world leader.

In an interview with CNN aired Wednesday, the 70-year-old Walesa — who supported Republican Mitt Romney in the 2012 election — said the Obama administration has been a dangerous disappointment.

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"When he was elected... there was great hope," Walesa said. ".... we were hoping Obama would reclaim moral leadership for America," adding: "That failed."

".... in terms of politics and morality, America no longer leads the world," he said. "...America did not regain its leadership status. We were just lucky there were no big conflicts in the world," saying the world has relied on a strong America to maintain the balance of power around the globe.

"... It's a dangerous situation so we are awaiting a president who will understand that," he said.

Walesa went from a shipyard electrician to a union leader who helped overthrow the communist government in Poland, winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1983, and seven years later, becoming the first democratically elected president in Poland.

"I managed to destroy a bad system," he told CNN in the interview in Washington. ".... now we must be excellent at building new things. It doesn't take that much."

In 2012, Walesa effectively endorsed Romney in his bid for president.

"I wish you to be successful because this success is needed to the United States, of course, but to Europe and the rest of the world, too," Walesa was heard after meeting Romney in Poland, the Weekly Standard reported at the time.

"Gov. Romney, get your success -- be successful!"

Walesa is the subject of a documentary that will be considered for an Academy Award this year, "Walesa, Man of Hope."

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