SOME QUICK THOUGHTS ON OBAMA AND WEAKNESS
Posted by Andrew Roman on December 30, 2009
If ever a President looked and sounded as detached, disconnected and disinterested in the events of the day as Barack Obama, I’m not aware of it. Jimmy Carter, for instance, never behaved as if the things he had to contend with were an annoyance, as Barack Obama does. He was simply an extraordinarily incompetent man who made appalling decisions. (And an anti-Semite to boot).
Bill Clinton, too, never made it seem like everything on his plate was as much of an inconvenience as Bammy does. While Slick Willie could charm the trousers off his frothing admirers, President Obama famously dismisses things in that eye-rolling, I’m-far-too-superior-for-this-kind-of-crap way that has become all too familiar. Obama always looks like he’d rather be talking about himself or nibbling on a waffle than tending to the real business of America.
For example, it was quite nice of the President to find the time, before hitting the links, to denounce the recent violence in Iran. For that, he gets a “credit where credit is due” sticker for his notebook. But he looked as if he had a thumbtack poking him in the roof of his mouth, or that he was wearing an over-starched pair of shorts. His apathy – body language, tone and overall demeanor – was as conspicuous as a piece of breakfast potato caught in Michael Moore’s beard. He didn’t even bother to wear a tie, looking as if he hastily grabbed the shirt Michelle had thrown over the top of the chair before he hit the podium.
Two days ago, in his initial statement after the attempted Christmas Day terrorist attack, Barack Obama was as weak and pathetic as he has been at any time during his presidency. His response was, to say the least, frail and bungled; and in the aftermath of a terrorist attack that was essentially a success until the very last moment, seeing and hearing the leader of the free world sound as if the keystone cops wrote his remarks was feebleness at its finest. Within a half-hour of saying how “we will not rest until we find all who were involved and hold them accountable,” he was teeing off at the Luana Hills Country Club.
Obama called the attempted Christmas Day terrorist attack an “isolated incident.” His Homeland Security Chief said the “system worked.” Not once in his response did the President have the courage to identify radical Islam as the enemy. Never did the President use the word “terrorist.” Never did he summon the strength or show the necessary leadership in defining the evil that threatens America, as Ronald Reagan did when he called the “evil empire” exactly what it was.
These things matter.
It is simply not possible to develop a strategy against the enemy if one is not willing to identify it and understand it.
Oh yeah … yesterday, the President tried again, making another statement regarding the terror plot. Call it, “take two.” It was better than his first performance, but nothing more than a slice of “too little, too late.”
Leadership, thy name is Obama.
William McGurn, in a column published in the Wall Street Journal yesterday, called “Obama Puts the Dis in Dissonance,” writes:
Here’s a timely New Year’s resolution the president might do well to deliver to his National Security Council: “When it comes to nasty regimes that brutalize their people, we will never again forget that the most powerful weapon in a president’s arsenal is a White House photo-op.”
The December headlines remind us that we have no shortage of these nasty regimes. In China, the government sentences Liu Xiaobo to 11 years in prison for writing a letter calling for legal and political reforms. In Iran, security forces fire on citizens marching in the streets. In Cuba, pro-government goons intimidate a group of wives, mothers and sisters of jailed dissidents—with President Raul Castro characterizing these bullies as “people willing to protect, at any price, the conquests of the revolution.”
In all these cases, the cry goes up: Where is the president of the United States?
For a man whose whole appeal has been wrapped in powerful imagery, President Obama appears strikingly obtuse about the symbolism of his own actions … With every statement not backed up by action, with every refusal to meet a leader such as the Dalai Lama, with every handshake for a Chavez, Mr. Obama is defining himself to foreign leaders who are sizing him up and have only one question in mind: How much can we get away with?
All of that overseas apologizing for America has had an effect. Each and every bow to a foreign head of state (e.g., the King of Saudi Arabia and the Emperor of Japan) has had an impact. All of that coddling of America’s enemies does matter. All of the nose-thumbing at friends and allies does make a difference.
The world does pay attention.
These are the snapshots of Obama’s first year that will be forever burned in the brains of people across the globe, friends and enemies alike.