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Remember Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s infamous “Reset Button” photo-op with her Russian counterpart? It’s probably the most laughably inept and self-aggrandizing event in recent American foreign policy. It’s less laughable now — unless you’re Sergey Lavrov, who’s still in office and has outlasted three of his American counterparts — but it was pretty good back then and may yet save us from a second Clinton Administration.
America’s reputation was in bad shape when President Obama assumed office. He and Clinton did everything in their power to exaggerate and contribute to that perception and present themselves as the harbingers of a new day. And the world basically seemed to hold itself together for the first five years of his presidency. Sure, there was that bit of unpleasantness in Iran; true, the Arab Spring veered off in ugly directions; conceded, the “red line” in Syria was a mistake; and yes, our an ambassador was murdered, but that was just background noise to the general level of wonderfulness, right? After all, Osama bin Laden was dead and General Motors was alive.