John R. Bolton, a diplomat and a lawyer, has spent many years in public service. From August 2005 to December 2006, he served as the U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations. From 2001 to 2005, he was under secretary of state for arms control and international security. At AEI, Ambassador Bolton's area of research is U.S. foreign and national security policy.
Negotiations for an “interim” arrangement over Iran’s nuclear weapons program finally succeeded this past weekend, as Security Council foreign ministers (plus Germany) flew to Geneva to meet their Iranian counterpart.
Under Barack Obama, American influence in the Middle East has sunk to levels not seen since before World War II. From Israel to Saudi Arabia, from Egypt to the United Arab Emirates, our friends are shaking their heads, wondering why we have seemingly taken leave of our senses.
Monday ends the worst month of the Obama presidency. The Syrian diplomatic and political debacle was bad enough, but last week at the United Nations President Obama embarked on a campaign for "progress" with Iran that will prove much more dangerous for American interests.
Whatever one thinks U.S. Syria policy should be (aid the opposition or stay away, strike the Assad regime for its use of chemical weapons or not), there is no dispute that the Security Council has essentially been a bystander. There is a reason for this outcome. The council has always been merely a reflection of the larger world.