War Is Boring: Obama’s War Strategy Evolved Version of Bush’s

War Is Boring: Obama’s War Strategy Evolved Version of Bush’s

In her Senate confirmation hearing last week, incoming Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that American foreign policy under President Barack Obama must blend military, diplomatic and humanitarian efforts, in equal measure. "We must use what has been called 'smart power,' the full range of tools at our disposal."

While consistent with Obama's longstanding call for greater international cooperation to address the world's problems, the idea of "smart power" gained widespread popularity in military and diplomatic circles during George W. Bush's second term. Obama's national-power strategy represents an evolution, not a revolution.

At a speech at Kansas State University in November 2007, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates -- who is staying on under the Obama Administration -- famously advocated smart power, emphasizing the need to make greater use of "soft power" tools beyond military force.

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