In an interview aired this weekend on 60 Minutes, Obama conceded that his administration (well, others in his administration, and not him specifically) had “underestimated” the growing threat that ISIS was becoming in Syria, and as a result, was late in fashioning a strategy to deal with them. One can only wonder if the majority of Americans that voted for this community agitator are learning something that will affect their behavior at the polls for the rest of their lives.
As a candidate for the presidency, Obama constantly spewed vitriolic criticism at the way that G.W. Bush was handling the threat posed by Jihadists in that region. Obama’s alternative – smart, tough diplomacy – would result in less violence and better relations, and just an increased standing in the region. All of this would happen if we would just be nice. Obama and many of those he has surrounded himself with have more-than-suggested that Jihadist attacks on us and our allies are as much our fault as anyone’s. Putting away the big stick, and speaking softly – that’s how you change Jihadist minds and hearts.
His approach purposely turns a blind eye to history, to reality, as has been the case so often among leftists. The endless insistence by liberals that we ought to just negotiate our way to peaceful bliss implies a belief that a satisfactory negotiated agreement is possible, and the only way that one can continue to hold that belief, or even hold out hope that diplomacy will have any real affect among Jihadists generally, is to bury your head in the sand, to close your eyes and ears to past and current reality.
Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel, has been dealing with the same kind of blindness and deafness for much of his public life. When Yassir Arafat was the leader of the Palestinian National Authority, Netanyahu was a singular voice crying in the wilderness, warning of the true intentions of those who, in one breath, claimed a desire to negotiate with Israel, and in the next vowed to eliminate Israel from the map. He warned that Arafat and other leaders would regularly say one thing in English when Western media outlets were present, but something very, very different in Arabic to his own people. Many on the left, in Israel and the U.S., saw Netanyahu as an insatiable war-hawk, as one who was too hard-lined, who favored war over any negotiated settlement.
In spite of the arrogant chidings of the Obama administration on a number of occasions, Mr. Netanyahu has been repeatedly vindicated. He sees the world as it is and responds accordingly. He understands that there is NO POSSIBILITY of negotiating an agreeable outcome when your adversary’s starting-point is your eradication. The only option in dealing with Jihadists who see the deaths of Israelis and Americans as first-class tickets to heaven is to stake out a just and reasoned position and then do whatever is necessary to enforce it, understanding that they will take every opportunity to kill us, no matter what means are employed.
President Bush, Vice President Cheney, military leaders in Iraq and Afghanistan, Mitt Romney, and a host of people who see things as they are have been shouting at the tops of their lungs about the threat of Islamists in an America-less regional vacuum. Obama and his ilk have brushed them all aside, characterized them as nuts, and withdrawn from the region.
And yesterday, Mr. Obama said that James Clapper underestimated ISIS.
Yes, elections have consequences, and it would be wonderful to think that we as citizens have the capacity to learn from this, and to utterly refuse to put people who see and hear some fictitious world into elected office, ever again. Simply dismissing those who suggest that he/she will be able to talk sense to Jihadists would be a very good start.