President Obama delivered remarks today on the horrific beheading of journalist James Foley at the hand of ISIS terrorists. At first, he seemed agitated and affected by the tragedy, as it was arguably the first time that Obama has actually identified the gruesome nature of our enemy.
“Let’s be clear about ISIL. They have rampaged across cities and villages, killing unarmed citizens in cowardly acts of violence,” said the president. “They abduct women and children, and subject them to torture and rape and slavery … They declare their ambition to commit genocide against an ancient people … No faith teaches people to massacre innocents. No just God would stand for what they did yesterday and what they do every single day … Their ideology is bankrupt. People like this ultimately fail. They fail because the future is won by those who build and not destroy.”
Interesting comments. He described ISIS in quite different terms as recently as January of this year during a New Yorker interview with David Remnick:
“The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms, that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant,” said Obama. “I think there is a distinction between the capacity and reach of a bin Laden and a network that is actively planning major terrorist plots against the homeland versus jihadists who are engaged in various local power struggles and disputes, often sectarian.”
Contrasting those cringe-inducing words (which he must regret saying at this point) with today’s statement, it’s pretty clear he finally realizes that they’re not some knock-off sports team-style imitation of al Qaeda. ISIS/ISIL is something entirely worse, and even more dangerous than the terrorist thugs who killed our people on 9/11.
The kid is learning, Surgers. The kid is learning. Well, sort of. According to Major Garrett of CBS, Obama was unshockingly back on the greens within MINUTES of his statement:
— Major Garrett (@MajorCBS) August 20, 2014
Sadly, when it comes to foreign policy, it takes the tragic results of inaction, almost without exception, for Obama to learn his lessons. Then, he usually forgets them all on the golf course.
The Washington Post‘s Eugene Robinson, however, feels a bit differently. According to him, the execution of James Foley proves that Obama’s airstrikes against ISIS have been effective. Okay, great! I guess Barry should keep teeing off then, since Eugene seems to believe that things are completely under control:
“The airstrikes are having an impact on ISIS, or they wouldn’t be doing this,” declared Robinson. “They wouldn’t be doing these dramatic and terroristic acts if they weren’t hurting. I think it’s had a real impact on them.”
Sure, that’s one way of looking at it.
Another way of looking at it would be to say our enemy is laughing at the American president’s weakness on the world stage, as they brag about their own evil actions. But to each his own.
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