Unfortunately for the West, America has been pushed off the leadership stage by a runt punk, Putin because the American President refuses to lead but the failure to confront Putin rests more on Europe. Germany is more confused than ever, perhaps because of the German Identity Crisis but France is worse because of their abject cowardice towards the Middle East and Putin. Great Britain should simply be re-named Britain. They are down to 63 million souls, 53 million if only England is counted. Too small to have a global economic impact. But Europe doesn’t have a combative or even a competitive mindset.
Putin is winning and Obama is losing but Putin is winning for the bad guys of Syria and Iran. Putin has all but annexed Syria and Assad who is nothing but a pawn on the chessboard. Helping Assad gives Putin Middle East Legitimacy even though he’s backing and is friendly with the wrong people.
Obama and America can shift the game by continuing to withhold the $150 Billion from Iran for about another year when Trump will be the Presidential nominee and the de-facto President. Obama will be tricky and therefore unpredictable until Trump actually takes office but so far as the Middle East, he’s a lame duck with the emphasis on lame. He’s lost in geo-politics.