There’s plenty that I find utterly and depressingly confounding about ideological liberalism, Save Jerseyans, but nothing makes me reach for the Aspirin so quickly in recent days as when I hear an Obamaphile try to explain (or rationalize) what’s transpiring in Iraq.
***Slams head on desk.***
Who are these people?
Well, like their leader, they violently and loudly opposed the 2007 Iraq War troop “surge” which, in case you’ve forgotten, was President George W. Bush’s controversial answer to a dramatic increase in insurgent activity; approximately 20,000 U.S. troops were sent to supplement the efforts of other American armed forces and Allied-trained Iraqi security forces.
It worked, though at a high cost. What happened – or didn’t happen – in Iraq since the surge is the issue at hand and, as the great Charles Krauthammer recently explained in his characteristically direct manner, “[w]e can debate forever whether those costs were worth it, but what is not debatable is Obama’s responsibility for the return of the Islamist insurgency that had been routed by the time he became president.”
History is fixed; the revisionists can’t change what actually happened, and the President’s supporters need to be called out whenever they attempt it.
For starters, after opposing the surge as a Senator, presidential candidate Obama admitted to Bill O’Reilly that it had, in fact, “succeeded beyond our wildest dreams.”
So why did Obama then campaign to withdraw all U.S. troops by the end of 2010? A full year earlier than the compromise Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) negotiated by President Bush? And why, after he won the election, did the President renew negotiations for a continued U.S. presence by offering a token force of only a few thousand troops (about 25,000 less than we’ve kept in South Korea)? A troop presence offering which his own commanders thought was pitifully insufficient and, presumably, the Iraqi leaders saw as more of a domestic political liability than a real security asset? And why did he insist on a parliamentary ratification from the young, barely-stable Iraq government despite the fact that it was procedurally unnecessary and politically provocative?
I’m not inside the man’s head but I suspect the answer is one which we already know: he didn’t give a damn about foreign policy. It was self-sabotage. The Alinsky disciple and ardent anti-colonialist openly and unambiguously ran for the presidency promising to “transform” America on the home front; American entanglements abroad were an unnecessary and expensive distraction from, for example, nationalizing the U.S. health care sector, but there were political points to be gained from ending an increasingly unpopular war.
Unpopular, yes, but you know what? Keeping a real U.S. military presence in Iraq through engaging the Iraqis in a good faith, serious, continued negotiation would’ve still been cheaper than what might be coming right around the bend, Save Jerseyans, as “ISIS” seeks to carve a new caliphate out of the sands of worn-torn Iraq and Syria. 300 military “advisers” are already en route to Mesopotamia. That term should be eerily familiar to anyone with a cursory knowledge of Vietnam War history.
It’s an nightmarish note of irony from which this long-standing Obama critic derives no pleasure.
All of the stunning hypocrisy surrounding President Obama’s epic fumble of our hard-won surge gains would be bad enough standing alone. What’s worse: rather than engage the current debate on its merits (translated: come up with a solution as to what to do now, accepting that the past is immutable), the Obamaphiles are responding by pointing fingers and blaming Bush for starting the war… 11 years ago…
Isn’t that kind of like blaming George Washington for the Civil War? A LOT has happened over the past decade. President Obama’s had his own chance to confront the perpetual challenge that is the Middle East over the past six years and he’s been found wanting in his response (or again, lack thereof) in Egypt, Libya and Syria. There isn’t enough digital ink to chronicler all of the million instances during that time frame when this President has made us appear dangerously weak to our enemies abroad. Ask Czar Putin all about it. Why is anyone surprised by this latest crisis? And how can any of them blame Dubya with a straight face?
Better yet, how can they complain about U.S. intervention in the Middle East while they oppose each and every serious attempt to make our country energy independent? Iraq is, or at least was, a growing factor in the global energy market. The liberals’ “no war for oil” mantra contrasts unflatteringly with their disdain of anything and everything that would make us less dependent on that part of the world.
Chris Christie nailed it last week on NJ 101.5. “Why isn’t the President building the XL pipeline?” Christie asked when Iraq came up during his monthly Q&A. “Why aren’t we doing even further exploration of the natural gas reserves we have — a hundred-year supply under this country. Why aren’t we working more with Mexico to open up that market and get more of the oil that the Mexicans have, to be able to make our entire continent energy-independent. That’s what we should be focused on and doing.”
We should. But we’re not, and it’s infuriating. And the legions of Obama sycophants are still going along for the ride.
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