Deputy National Security Adviser Benjamin J. Rhodes Shaping President Obama’s Foreign Policy Strategy

by Colonel on March 17, 2013

“Mr. Rhodes is drafting the address to the Israeli people the president plans to give in Jerusalem, but his influence extends beyond what either his title or speechwriting duties suggest. Drawing on personal ties and a philosophical kinship with Mr. Obama that go back to the 2008 campaign, Mr. Rhodes helped prod his boss to take a more activist policy toward Egypt and Libya when those countries erupted in 2011.

Now that influence is being put to the test again on the issue of Syria. … Mr. Rhodes, his friends and colleagues said, is deeply frustrated by a policy that is not working, and has become a strong advocate for more aggressive efforts to support the Syrian opposition.

Administration officials note that Mr. Rhodes is not alone in his frustration over Syria, pointing out that Mr. Obama, too, is searching for an American response.

” — Mark Landler, Copyright 2013 The New York Times Company

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