Credit: Eric Ryan Anderson / The New York Times

When Hamas attacked Israel, Republicans knew whom to blame: President Biden. Donald Trump asserted that the attack wouldn’t have happened if he were still in the White House; Mike Pence, while condemning Trump for praising Hezbollah, asserted that Biden was somehow endangering U.S. interests by “projecting weakness.”

Like much of what the American right says these days, these smears were both vile and infantile. No, the U.S. president isn’t like Green Lantern, able to shape world events through sheer force of will. And Biden has, in fact, taken remarkably tough positions on foreign affairs, much more so than his predecessor.

More generally, it’s striking how both the far left, which has no significant influence on the Democratic Party, and the far right, which largely runs the G.O.P., are American solipsists. They blame U.S. leaders for everything bad that happens in the world, denying foreigners any agency.

That said, even serious students of international affairs are noting that […]

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