President Obama staunchly defended his foreign policy record against Republican election-year criticism that he has overseen a decline in American power in the world.
Mitt Romney has accused the Democratic president of weakening America on the world stage, chiding Obama for setting a timeline for leaving Afghanistan and has called the Iraq withdrawal last year a premature move. The Iraq pullout followed a timetable put in place by former President George W. Bush.
Obama, in a weekend NATO summit in Chicago, acknowledged there were risks in withdrawing U.S. and allied forces from Afghanistan by the end of 2014. But while addressing graduating cadets of the Air Force Academy, he pushed back hard against Romney’s claim that America had lost ground under his leadership.
"Let’s start by putting aside the tired notion that says our influence has waned, that America is in decline. We’ve heard that talk before," he said, declaring that his policies were seeding the way to a new "American Century."
Credit: President Obama salutes as he arrives for the Air Force Academy commencement ceremony in Colorado Springs, Colorado, May 23, 2012. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

President Obama staunchly defended his foreign policy record against Republican election-year criticism that he has overseen a decline in American power in the world.

Mitt Romney has accused the Democratic president of weakening America on the world stage, chiding Obama for setting a timeline for leaving Afghanistan and has called the Iraq withdrawal last year a premature move. The Iraq pullout followed a timetable put in place by former President George W. Bush.

Obama, in a weekend NATO summit in Chicago, acknowledged there were risks in withdrawing U.S. and allied forces from Afghanistan by the end of 2014. But while addressing graduating cadets of the Air Force Academy, he pushed back hard against Romney’s claim that America had lost ground under his leadership.

"Let’s start by putting aside the tired notion that says our influence has waned, that America is in decline. We’ve heard that talk before," he said, declaring that his policies were seeding the way to a new "American Century."

Credit: President Obama salutes as he arrives for the Air Force Academy commencement ceremony in Colorado Springs, Colorado, May 23, 2012. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Three anti-NATO protesters face terrorism charges

Three anti-NATO protesters arrested in a late-night raid days before start of the 60-nation summit have been charged with terrorism for possession of explosive devices, Eric Johnson reports.

But supporters of the three men arrested Wednesday evening at a residence in the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago disputed the charges and said the police had confused beer-making equipment with explosives.

"The charges are utterly ridiculous. CPD doesn’t know the difference between home beer-making supplies and Molotov cocktails," said Natalie Wahlberg, a member of the Occupy Chicago movement protesting over income inequality.

The National Lawyers Guild, the group of volunteer lawyers representing the protesters, said police “broke down doors with guns drawn and searched residences without a warrant or consent,” according to a statement on the group’s Facebook page.