President Obama s coming to the fag end of his term and will relinquish office on 20 January 17. The baton will then n be held by Donald Trump. Obama had 8 significant years in the White Huse and one wonders how he will be feeling as he leaves office. This last holiday with his family will be a time for introspection and he will realize that he was constrained by 2 things. Firstly his vision and secondly Congress which was antagonistic to him and torpedoed most of his proposals.
Obama will fly to Hawaii in his Air Force one, maybefor the last time. He will be Hawaii for the new year as well as Christmas. This time it appears he will relax with his family and play golf and eat ice cream as well as dine at joints that he has known since childhood. Come to think of it, the president-elect Donald Trump had doubted Obama was born in Hawaii and often questioned it. But later he has backed off and is no longer an issue with him. But it did sully the atmosphere as many also claimed he was a closet Muslim.
Obama's holiday in Hawaii is something he has been availing every year. He will be staying a mere 30-minute drive away fromWaikiki and will swim the pristine beaches there. It should be a relaxing holiday. However, he has one official chore and that is receiving the Japanese prime minister Abe Shinzo in Hawaii on 28th December. Both the leaders will then visit Pearl Harbor, a first by a Japanese leader. Earlier Obama had visited Hiroshima. Another first as no US president had ever been to Hiroshima, the site where the first A-Bomb was dropped.
Obama can be justifiably proud of this hand of friendship as also his opening to Cuba where president Raul Castro has responded warmly. Obama broke the ice with Cuba after 5 decades and a missile crisis in 1962 that almost brought the world to the brink of a nuclear war. Obama also visited Cuba and many hard-line Republicans were aghast but the clock now cannot be set back.
Obama will thus have the last holiday as president of USA. Probably he will continue to visit Hawaii but not as president. He will have plenty of time for introspection and one fact that will gnaw at him is that the ISIS arose and became a power during his term as president. Not a happy legacy.