An Analysis of Foreign Policies of the Obama Administration: From January 2009 to May 2010

Author Name KUBO Fumiaki  (Faculty Fellow, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. July 2010 10-J-044
Research Project Study of the U.S. Foreign and Security Policy under the Obama Administration
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The foreign and national security policy team under President Obama consists mostly of moderate Democrats and moderate/realist Republicans, although Obama originally came from a group close to anti-war/leftist activists of the Democratic Party. Obama started with many bold initiatives on multi-fronts based on the belief in rationality, calling for negotiations even with North Korea and Iran.

The tone of Obama’s foreign policies, however, has undergone a significant change. He is now very tough with Iran. The policies toward China have also shifted significantly. His only concrete achievement in foreign policy area has been the nuclear reduction agreement with Russia, which he obtained without compromising a lot on missile defense. Some journalists now characterize his foreign policies as realist. It is premature to judge on this, but we need to be aware of the change and its implications.