President Obama and his administration are not interested in reaching the millions of FOX News viewers. The inability of the administration and the President to articulate the mission and endgame of the action in Libya concerns all Americans, not just the the viewers of three traditional, old media network sources.
The Obama administration sent out Secretary of State Clinton and Defense Secretary Gates to ABC, NBC and CBS Sunday morning shows but refused FOX News the same guests. FOX News Sunday, hosted by veteran journalist Chris Wallace, consistently has a far greater audience than two of the shows on the other networks. The millions of FOX viewers clearly still do not appear on the radar of Team Obama. One would have thought that as we are now into the third year of the Obama term that the silly boycott of FOX News would have shown what an ill-conceived idea it was to bypass such a huge audience.
This President and Secretary Clinton both have video clips available showing them sternly speaking out against military action without congressional approval, but that was then and this is now. In their days as senators and presidential candidates, it was expected that they would take to the floor of the Senate and rail against the arrogance of a president committing troops to war without congressional approval. But that was Bush and this is Obama. Bush, for the record, never committed troops without congressional approval.
Now the candidate who ran as an anti-war candidate has committed our participation in a No Fly Zone over Libya and ramped up the amount of troops in Afghanistan. It is re-election time so he has an only half-hearted acceptance of the position of Commander-in-Chief. A consequence of this timidity is it will put our service members in added danger. Obama has a habit of announcing our retreat as troops head in. He did it as he committed more troops in Afghanistan and he did it as he first remained mute on Libya then succumbed to increasing pressure from voices in Europe, the middle east and America.
Being multi-lateral doesn't mean you have to appear weak and defensive and not interested in victory, as one panelist said, and Obama is guilty of all of that.
The president is scheduled to speak to the nation about Libya on Monday night. It is scheduled earlier than traditional presidential addresses - the folks on the West Coast will still be at work - and he will speak from the National Defense University. Does he really not want an audience for this speech?
The National Defense University? He is late in going on camera and explaining the whole process of deciding to establish the No Fly Zone and what the strategy is, then the benchmark for success. No one seems to know what the plan is, certainly not those in his own administration. Today on the talk shows, Secretary Gates and Secretary Clinton were not on the same page. For example, Secretary Gates stated that the No Fly Zone was not in our vital interest. Secretary Clinton jumped in to state that other nations came to form our coalition in Afghanistan though they were not directly attacked as we were by bin Laden. Now we are answering their call to action, she said.
From the website: The National Defense University is the premier center for Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) and is under the direction of the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff. The University’s main campus is on Fort Lesley J. McNair in Washington, D.C. The Joint Forces Staff College is located in Norfolk, VA.
Why this venue for a speech to the country on a war action the president has no intends to only minimally pursue - only long enough so he can say he acted as he is answering questions on the campaign trail? How will he justify committing American blood and treasure for an action in which is unwilling to accept leadership as the Commander-in-Chief of the only superpower in the world?
Barack Obama is a man in love with a camera and spotlight. He has been in our faces as a candidate and as President for more than four years. His team looks for an opportunity for daily exposure on screen. It is beyond odd that he has been off camera for this explanation for so long.
Did Obama commit our military to an action without a plan?