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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
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Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Come on Obama, we’re better than this

In just a week, the United States’ image abroad has been torn apart. A few days of hasty, rash decisions have made the nation look foolish and weak on the world stage.
One ironic flop was made by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. She presented Russia’s foreign minister with what was supposed to be a “reset” button, starting a beginning with relations between the two countries. Instead, she made a fool of the U.S. when the button was incorrectly translated.
Instead of saying “reset,” the button used the Russian word for “overcharge.” It was a simple enough mistake, and Clinton made light of it at the ceremony, but it certainly didn’t do anything to help the way Russians view America. When using such a symbolic gesture in front of the world, someone in the administration should at least be competent enough to make sure it is properly translated.
In another weekend development, President Barack Obama told the New York Times that the U.S. is not winning the war in Afghanistan, and we should begin talking with elements of the Taliban. Beside demoralizing our troops and the general public, this sends a message that America is weak and beginning surrender talks.
Despite adamant claims by the administration that this isn’t a surrender, it sure looks like one. The Taliban harbored Al Qaeda operatives and provided safe haven for terrorists. They were one of the main reasons the U.S. entered Afghanistan in the first place, and now the president wants to negotiate with them. Even with the best of intentions, other countries take notice, and it seriously reduces American bargaining power in world politics.
Continuing in that vein, the Obama administration invited Iran to an upcoming international conference in Afghanistan. That may seem harmless, but it’s sending a dangerous message to adversaries of the U.S. Many will interpret this and the other recent foreign policy actions as signs that America has no other options, and is having to negotiate with its enemies.
Despite dealing with different countries and regions, these events are interconnected. They paint America in a fragile state – looking to bargain, incompetent, and less adamant about pursuing its enemies.
Maybe one at a time, these moves wouldn’t have been anything to worry about. But all together, they portray a weakened nation, ready to bargain with anyone and everyone who poses a threat. This isn’t the case, and the Obama administration should consider the message it is sending to adversaries of the U.S.

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