Susan Rice pick signals more assertive Obama: US media

President Barack Obama’s snub to his Republican critics in naming long-time confidante Susan Rice as his top adviser was seen as signalling a more assertive president, but it was unclear how it would reshape US foreign policy.

Currently ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, who would replace the retiring Tom Donilon as the National Security Advisor, had courted controversy by her comments on the Benghazi terrorist attack, to lose the job of secretary of state to John Kerry.

The influential New York Times said ‘Obama’s defiant selection’ of Rice on Wednesday ‘underscored the newly assertive approach he has taken to appointments’ ever since he was forced to ‘abandon’ Rice amid a furore over the handling of the Benghazi attack. ‘The unapologetic selections reflect a conclusion in the West Wing that when it comes to choosing personnel, the president can never satisfy Republicans who will find almost anyone objectionable,’ it said.

The Washington Post wondered editorially if Rice’s appointment could ‘signal a more activist US foreign policy?’ ‘Obama appears to be the animating force behind what increasingly looks like a broad US retreat from its longtime role as the world’s ‘indispensable nation’, it said, suggesting ‘there isn’t much reason to expect that Rice’s appointment would lead to a reversal of this strategy’.
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