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    President Donald Trump talks with former President Barack Obama on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, Jan. 20, 2017, after Trump took the presidential oath

    Take Two: Americans Elected Obama to End Middle East Wars, Want Same From Trump

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    On Friday, Donald Trump was sworn in as 45th President of the United States. During his inaugural speech, Trump stressed that the US should not impose American values on other nations, but rather lead by example. Speaking to Sputnik, former Rand Paul advisor Brian Darling recalled that President Obama came into office with a very similar promise.

    "We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example," Trump said, addressing the nation and the world for the first time as president on Friday. "We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones, and unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the earth," he added, stressing that the US "will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world."

    Speaking to Sputnik about the end of the Obama era and the start of the Trump presidency, Brian Darling, Vice President of the conservative Washington-based consulting firm Third Dimension Strategies, explained that unfortunately, the outgoing president did not live up to a central campaign promise of his.

    Thinking back to 2008, Darling recalled that "the American people were tired of wars, and that's why they elected President Obama. They were tired of the war in Afghanistan; they were tired of the war in Iraq, and they elected an individual who said he was going to change these policies."

    Unfortunately, he noted, in the eight years since, Obama's foreign policy has turned into something that's "hard to understand, because he was more interventionist in Libya, he wanted to take sides in the Syrian civil war, and he was not aggressive enough in Iraq to fight ISIS [Daesh]." Americans "saw a muddled foreign policy – a foreign policy that didn't make any sense, and a foreign policy where Obama promised not to be an interventionist, but proved to be very interventionist — in Egypt, in Libya," and initially, even in Syria.

    "The American people don't want that," Darling emphasized. "They want to defeat ISIS, and they want to have less intervention in the Mideast. They don't want to be involved in all these Middle Eastern wars. Donald Trump won by saying he doesn't want to be a nationbuilder – that he doesn't want to be involved in all these civil wars. He wants to make America great again by putting America first, and not putting an internationalist-type agenda of intervening in all of these countries as part of our foreign policy. I think the American people were drawn to the idea of trying to keep many of our troops home and not intervening in civil wars."

    Commenting on Trump's cabinet picks, which include many military figures, Darling suggested that there is an argument to be made that the presence of combat generals in positions of political power would actually make Washington "more restrained" and "a lot smarter," since in the past, it has been the politicians with the least experience in actual warfare that have been the most eager to rush into it.

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    commentary, Barack Obama, Donald Trump, United States
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