August 29 2014
President Obama on ISIS: I Don't Have a Strategy
It was clear from President Obama’s strange and unnecessary press conference yesterday that ISIS will have at least two and a half years to grow with only minimal interference from the United States.
Meanwhile, President Obama’s strategy on Russia “is to do absolutely nothing” said Charles Krauthammer yesterday. The president doesn’t even acknowledge that Russia has invaded the Ukraine.
President Obama both through ideological orientation and character is not the man to deal with our looming world crises. We find ourselves at a fearful juncture in American history, one that demands a president blessed with fortitude and courage.
Also desirable is a president with the intellectual grounding to understand what is going on, but we have a president who prattles on about the “arc of history” without knowing too much about the history of history.
Former House Intelligence Committee chairman Pete Hoekstra says that we are not prepared for what is to come, with the worst people on the planet engaged in “a global terrorist arms race:”
The U.S. faces a very dangerous sprint by outlaws to gather the deadliest weapons and technology on the planet, something we always thought possible but hoped would never occur. The Obama administration and Congress will need to confront this new reality. They cannot pretend that it doesn’t exist or is anything less than the grave matter that it is.
This developing global arms race requires serious long-term foresight. The U.S. military and economy must be prepared for potentially devastating events that were unthinkable just a few short years ago.
Unless President Obama pulls a Harry Truman and rises to the occasion (and I am talking about character and not bombs, liberals), then we aren’t going to be able to do much to change course until the next presidential election.
In a column headlined “It’s Not a Videogame,” the Wall Street Journal’s Daniel Henninger argues that recent foreign events have reframed the 2016 presidential election. Former Obama secretary of state Hillary Clinton is moving into place as more hawkish than her former boss.
But would Mrs. Clinton be forced to become more like the current occupant of the Oval Office to satisfy the base of her party? Henninger writes:
Let us hypothesize that Mrs. Clinton is a Democratic hawk. Name one other office-holding hawk in the party? California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, sort of. Beyond these two women, none. Former Sen. Joe Lieberman, the party's vice presidential nominee in 2000? They joyously ran him out of the party in 2006. Sam Nunn ? The last of the South's great national-security Senate Democrats retired in 1996. Former Democratic Sen. Pat Moynihan served as a Republican president's U.N. ambassador. Democratic hawks, or even half-hawks, aren't an endangered species. They're extinct.
The military types, pundits and big donors who claim to have spotted appearances of Clinton hawkishness are deluding themselves. Bill Clinton of Kosovo? In 2008, the progressive activists who organized and financed Mr. Obama's candidacy overthrew the Clintons ' centrist triangulation machine and took control of the party. Dutifully, Mrs. Clinton ran as an antiwar candidate.
Any hawklike initiative she might attempt will be vetted and opposed by the Obama-Warren Democrats in Congress and across the blogosphere. They abhor Mrs. Clinton's "international liberalism." The MoveOn.org website has posted an online petition exhorting President Obama to "Keep America Out of Iraq!" These hearts and minds belong wholly to the domestic-spending accounts. National security needs diminish their reason for being.
Just to make it clear: One does not have to propose to invade a country—I think the cliché is put “boots on the ground”—to pursue a more knowledgeable and forceful foreign policy for our safety in a dangerous world.
To give you the full measure of how trivial we have become, Twitter exploded yesterday with comments about President Obama’s tan suit. If only clothes did make the man.