It is the time of year when we would all prefer to stop thinking about the serious news so much and focus more on the holidays and our families. All this week, the cable news channels have prominently featured guest anchors as the regular folks leave in anticipation of lower ratings and a slow news week. There’s only one problem: the news around the globe is going from bad to worse before our very eyes, and the United States seems powerless or uninterested in stopping it.
Of course you know by now that Turkey shot down a Russian jet yesterday that was flying in Turkish airspace. Of course, as a sovereign nation Turkey can do what it wants with its airspace and is within its rights to shoot down a combat unit that invades it, but that hasn’t stopped Russia from threatening massive escalation in a region where their presence has already destabilized a very delicate situation.
Ideally, this would be a great time for the United States and other NATO allies to strongly and unequivocally declare that they stand with and for Turkey in this dispute. However, even that is complicated by the fact that, for months, Turkey has been pretending to “fight ISIS” when in fact they are fighting the Kurds that we are allied with. Erdogan’s (possibly corrupt) consolidation of power has led Turkey to act with increasingly bold indifference to the wishes of America (or anyone else) in favor of strengthening Erdogan’s crypto-Islamic fascist ambitions.
Meanwhile, in France, a jumpy nation responded to what appears to have been a standard-issue bank robbery by assuming (quite rationally) that more terror was afoot; after all, they’ve lived for a solid week under high alert, and their country has now likewise joined the fray in the Middle East with actual guns and bombs.
Circling around the globe, the Islamic State and Al Qaeda continue their campaign of one-upsmanship, including an explosion targeting the Presidential guard bus in Tunisia which killed 12 and of course the terrorist attack at the Mali hotel by an Al Qaeda affiliate earlier in the week.
Missing from any of this is any indication that anyone gives a crap what the United States might think or do in response to literally any event in the world. And unless you believe that a world in which Russia or China is the predominant force is a better world than the one that has existed for the last 25 years, that’s a very bad thing indeed.
It’s one thing for President Obama to be bored, disinterested, and disengaged from his job, which he clearly is. It’s another thing for him to telegraph it so clearly to the entire world. Most of the Paris victims weren’t even in the ground before Obama was on television ruling out the use of boots on the ground to fight ISIS pretty much no matter what. A toxic stew of conflicting interests that rivals the situation in Korea in 1949 is developing right under Obama’s nose and his basic response is to send the inappropriately named Josh Earnest out to the podium to claim that Russia is shooting directly at our strategic interests because they are operating from a position of weakness.
Here is how disconnected the President is from anything that is really occurring in the world. In a week in which Islamic terrorists shot, exploded, and/or stabbed hundreds of innocent people in a saga that played out basically on live TV, he went to UN Climate Conference yesterday and had the nerve to say that he was really doing something that was going to show ISIS what’s what by… talking about climate change in front of microphones, I guess.
It’s often been remarked – even by liberals – that it seems like the only thing Obama truly enjoys is running for office, and that he hates the actual job itself. We watched this with our own eyes for four years, and collectively as a country decided that it didn’t matter because Mitt Romney said “binders full of women.” And now the world is paying the price.