President Obama Defends Foreign Policy In Speech11:03

This article is more than 7 years old.

President Obama pushed back today against critics of his foreign policy, during a graduation ceremony at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

The president said the U.S. remains "the indispensable nation," and said the question is not, "whether American will lead, but how we will lead."

He also emphasized that the "U.S. will use military force, unilaterally when necessary," but "when issues of global concern that do not pose a direct threat to the United States are at stake ... we should not go it alone."

The president’s approach to foreign policy has come under harsh criticism for what opponents say is a passive approach abroad.

NPR political correspondent Mara Liasson discusses President Obama’s speech, and his vision for America’s role in the world, with Here & Now's Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson. The hosts then turn to former Assistant Secretary of Defense Bing West for analysis.


This article was originally published on May 28, 2014.

This segment aired on May 28, 2014.