We’ve highlighted in this forum multiple examinations of the Obama administration’s foreign-policy approach, or the Obama Doctrine.

Now Douglas J. Feith and Seth Cropsey offer that doctrine a name. Writing in the latest Commentary, they label President Obama’s approach “constrainment.”

[A]s the American approach to countering the Soviet menace came to be known as the “doctrine of containment,” the Obama Doctrine may come to be known as the “doctrine of self-containment.” Or, perhaps more fitting, given the echo of the foreign-policy approach that governed the Cold War, the “doctrine of constrainment.” …

… Two large ideas animate the Obama Doctrine. The first is that America’s role in world affairs for more than a century has been, more often than not, aggressive rather than constrained, wasteful rather than communal, and arrogant in promoting democracy, despite our own democratic shortcomings. Accordingly, America has much to apologize for, including failure to understand others, refusal to defer sufficiently to others, selfishness in pursuing U.S. interests as opposed to global interests, and showing far too much concern for U.S. sovereignty, independence, and freedom of action. The second idea is that multilateral institutions offer the best hope for restraining U.S. power and moderating our national assertiveness.