Why is the Biden administration so widely perceived as “weak”? It began with Donald Trump labeling Joe Biden as “Sleepy Joe” in 2020. Republicans subsequently came to widely characterize Joe Biden as “weak”. Then came the disastrous collapse in Afghanistan and the chaotic American pullout which left hundreds of thousands behind who urgently needed to leave. This greatly contributed to the image of Biden as “weak”. A year of fruitless appeasement of Iran ensued, something which definitely in the eyes of Iran identified the Biden administration as “weak”. Of course, the Biden administration was only trying to avert Iranian WMD mass terrorist attacks against the American homeland but did in the process rather exacerbate that threat by de facto undoing any semblance American deterrence. Then came Ukraine which the US is effectively ceding to Russia by refusing to fight a war for the freedom of one of Europe’s largest nations. Yes, America has promised to severely punish Moscow after the fact but that only eliminates American leverage over Russia without in any way influencing an invasion already under way. America is retreating from an Islamdom which it sees mostly as trouble and this of course is precisely what the Jihadists (including the Khomeinist regime) want. Could all this be characterized as weakness?
America has a communication problem. The problem does not lie with career diplomats at the State Department who are talented, devoted and professional. Rather there is a problem with the diplomatic discourse of the Biden administration which comes out jumbled, confused, without clear direction, unable to communicate its priorities & strategy and yes as weak. Of course this is not the intention but this is the international impression. The result is adversaries who no longer fear America and allies who do not trust the United States although they may not necessarily say so directly. America urgently needs to restore its credibility and deterrence. This requires an overhaul of America’s communication strategies.