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Former Director of Global Engagement for the Obama White House Brett Bruen declared Tuesday that Joe Biden’s “reckless riffs” and foreign policy gaffes “have unnecessarily undermined our standing and irresponsibly handed propaganda points to our adversaries.”
In an article published in USA Today, titled “Biden’s careless comments are hurting his presidency and diplomacy. He needs a reset,” Bruen took the president and his national security team to task.
“I used to cringe when Vice President Joe Biden took to the podium. Despite all the preparation that went into an event and his remarks, as a staffer on the National Security Council, you never quite knew what he might say,” he wrote.
“At times, his offhanded comments could spice up what otherwise would be a pretty boring policy address. Yet, there were other times, too many times, when it could veer into dangerous terrain,” he continued.
“The reckless riffs have continued during his presidency, especially when discussing diplomacy,” he wrote.
Bruen criticized Biden for remarking last summer on the “inevitability” that Kabul would “fall to the Taliban,” seeming to “give Russian President Vladimir Putin a tacit green light to take at least some Ukrainian territory,” asserting in Poland that Putin “should be removed from power,” and stating “his clear commitment of American forces to the defense of Taiwan, a major departure from our long-standing policy.”
“How does such careless careening into crisis territory keep happening?” he asked. “Biden bears the lion share of blame for his ill-considered improvisation.”
Bruen also placed blame on Biden’s national security team, saying, “They are all too aware that he has this troublesome tendency to go off script.” They should better prepare the president for “obvious questions” and also be prepared themselves in advance with responses and “strategies for when the president sails the ship of state into unchartered waters.”
“Sometimes, the president’s experience and overconfidence do not serve him well,” Bruen said. “Decades doing diplomacy have led to Biden developing pretty rigid perceptions and policy positions. He is often stuck in outdated notions of how the world works. Repeatedly, we have watched him stick to his guns, even as events in places like Kabul radically changed.”
He reiterated his call “after the botched pullout of American forces from Afghanistan” to fire Biden National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan. “He remains, and so do the process problems,” Bruen added.
“This is an extraordinarily dangerous time for the United States and our allies. It requires a strong and consistent level of diplomatic discipline. I fear that anything less could lead us unnecessarily into a conflict, whether with China, Iran, Russia or North Korea,” he wrote.
“At the very least, from our own hemisphere to the Asia Pacific region, we have unnecessarily undermined our standing and irresponsibly handed propaganda points to our adversaries. Something needs to fundamentally change in how this White House deals with diplomacy,” he continued.
Bruen called for Biden to “reset the whole national security team.”
“They have repeatedly shown an inability to execute and to staff him effectively. We need more experienced leaders who can speak truth to power and implement our foreign policy without so many fumbles,” he concluded.