Not only was this astounding to the average viewer of this press briefing, it must have rocked our allies in Europe and delighted our enemies abroad. I can well imagine the leadership of ISIL and other bad actors high fiving each other as they gathered around their electronic devices to hear what the leader of the free world had to say about them. This sent an unimaginably bad message to everyone, most importantly the American people. Once again, our president proves he is incapable of making a decision to protect the security of our country and to reassure our allies that America will step up to do the right thing.
ISIS/ISIL has been well known to us for the past four years, with each year bringing them closer to gaining momentum. Since last January, ISIS has made considerable progress in taking over Iraqi provinces. Finally, after months of begging for help, the Kurds are receiving a bit of support from this administration. This president was unable to complete an agreement for leaving some troops for support in Iraq - a deliberate move, in my opinion - and now we see that this president has snatched defeat from victory in Iraq. Obama ran on being the anti- Iraq war candidate and has ruled as such. Hillary Clinton recently admitted her votes on Iraq were solely politically motivated, not what she thought was really best for that country. This is why Democrats are not to be trusted in foreign policy.
Joe Biden ran as the guy to bring heft to the ticket in 2008, as Obama had no foreign policy experience. He essentially had no experience for the job of president but Americans fell in love with the idea of the first black president and even solid Republicans felt justified in voting for that ticket in 2008. Sadly, Obama has proven to be an affirmative action kind of president - one who would certainly have never survived the initial Democratic primary races had he not been a black man. This is some hard truth that has been unspoken for too long and now our country is the laughingstock of free nations.
British Prime Minister Cameron interrupted his summer vacation to go back to 10 Downing Street and the British Parliament when the American journalist was beheaded by ISIL to send a message to President Obama and the West to not continue air strikes meant to diminish ISIL advances. What did President Obama do? He finally issued a weak statement of sympathy over the journalist's death and a quick trip back to Washington, D.C. while contending that he had made no decision or put in place policy to attend to these fresh threats. Today we learn that the second American journalist held as hostage has met the same fate as his colleague.
Obama seems to believe that if he wishes away the brutal actions of ISIL or of Russian President Putin, then atrocities in Iraq and Syria and Ukraine will just not exist. The evidence is that Team Obama is incapable of leading the free world. Who can believe that we are where we are as America?
In recent editorials and op-eds, this has been addressed. Former chess champion Garry Kasparov has written about the situation with President Putin, most recently HERE. Ukraine is falling into going to war with Russia over their sovereignty as a nation. Where is America? Ukraine doesn't want our American boots on the ground there but are asking for equipment and training to fight Putin's army.
The world changed a bit last Friday as Putin delivered a blusterous speech boasting of Russia's nuclear power and might. Clearly he intends to continue his march to take land which no longer belongs to Russia. He was allowed to take Crimea without outside opposition and was emboldened by that. What is after Ukraine? Estonia? Latvia?
"What we’re seeing around the world is a revolt of the weak. There are certain weak movements and nations, beset by internal contradictions, that can’t compete if they play by the normal rules of civilization. Therefore, they are conspiring to blow up the rule book."That is from a piece written by David Brooks in the New York Times. He continues:
"The first example is Russia. Putin is poor in legitimacy. He is poor in his ability to deliver goods and dignity for his people. But he is rich in brazenness. He is rich in his ability to play by the lawlessness of the jungle, so he wants the whole world to operate by jungle rules.
There has been a norm, generally operating over the past few decades, or even centuries, that big, powerful nations don’t gobble up everything around them just because they can. But this is precisely the norm that Putin is brazenly crushing under foot. If Putinism can effectively tear down this norm, more and more we’ll live in a world in which brazenness is rewarded and self-restraint is punished.
Then there are the Islamist movements like the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. This movement is poor in offering a lifestyle that most people find attractive. But it is strong in spiritual purity, so it wants to set off a series of religious wars and have the world organized by religious categories.
There has been a norm, developed gradually over the centuries, that politics is not a totalistic spiritual enterprise. Governments try to deliver order and economic benefits to people, but they do not organize their inner spiritual lives.
This is precisely the norm that ISIS and other jihadi groups are trying to destroy. If they succeed, then the Middle East will devolve into a 30 years war of faith against faith. Zealotry will be rewarded, and restraint will be punished.
Putin and ISIS are not threats to American national security, narrowly defined. They are threats to our civilizational order."
Unfortunately, President Obama and his team are looking to be the weakest of all.