By Matt Rooney | The Save Jersey Blog
Michelle Obama is getting plenty of kudos from all sectors of social media, Right and Left, for showing up in Saudi Arabia for the funeral of King Abdullah without the customary head scarf (mandated for citizens but not foreigners).
How brave! Right? Striking a blow for human rights and gender equality while surrounded by Secret Service agents.
Forgive me if I’m a bit underwhelmed by her gesture. While Michelle Obama was bearing her naked (and blurred) head in Riyadh for a society living under Sharia Law, her husband’s campaign team was 1,000 miles away in Tel Aviv attempting to undermine the government of our strongest democratic ally in the Middle East. Our ONLY democratic ally, in fact.
These types of glaring contradictions have become habitual for an administration that thinks “hashtag activism” is a legitimate substitute for a coherent foreign policy.
It’s been almost a full year since Michelle Obama helped “raise awareness” of the kidnapping of young women and girls by the crazed Islamic militants known as “Boko Haram,” a group whose notorious activities in Northern Africa have been largely ignored by the international community and media, by being photographed holding a piece of paper with “#BringBackOurGirls” written on it.
A lovely gesture but here’s the problem: she really needs to focus on raising her husband’s courage to do something about it. Or his awareness of radical Islam as a problem that needs to be addressed forcefully by Western powers, not a justifiable reaction to long-dead colonialists. ISIS and their ideological allies are on the march, China is building provocatively-placed bases in the East China Sea, and Putin’s Russia continues to advance in Eastern Europe by undermining the Urkaine from within.
Sadly, the Obamas only seem capable of the small gestures. America – and those who depend on her – will need to make due with head scarf diplomacy (and its predictably disastrous results) at least until January 2017.