Archive for the ‘National Security’ Category
While watching the O’Reilly Factor Wednesday night, I was pissed to hear how ISIS, aka the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, had essentially rolled back the military gains made by the Bush administration. Put differently, the Obama administration is in the process of losing a war that the Bush administration had won. I know because I wrote about it back in November, 2007:
Since the last soldiers of the “surge” deployed last May, Baghdad has undergone a remarkable transformation.
No longer do the streets empty at dusk. Liquor stores and cinemas have reopened for business. Some shops stay open until late into the evening. Children play in parks, young women stay out after dark, restaurants are filled with families and old men sit at sidewalk cafes playing backgammon and smoking shisha pipes.
Compare that description with this article:
They have live-tweeted amputations, carried out public crucifixions and have been disavowed as too extreme by al-Qaeda. Now they have taken over Mosul, Iraq’s second biggest city. They are the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIS, a group of extremist Sunni Islamist militants, and they are rapidly becoming one of the deadliest and most prolific insurgent groups in the Middle East.
On Tuesday, ISIS fighters led a surprise attack on government locations in Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city.
The assault was so brutal that soldiers in the Iraqi army left their posts and in some cases even their uniforms as they fled en masse, according to a report by the Washington Post. The assault has left the terror group in control of the city’s airport, army base and other vital infrastructure. It provided them with cash from the city’s banks and weapons from the local military posts. As the BBC notes, the fighting has also resulted in the rapid and fearful exodus of hundreds of thousands of people.
The seizure of Mosul is the latest event in the the rise of ISIS, once merely one of the many al-Qaeda-linked franchises that occupied the fractious and insecure regions of Syria and Iraq, but now a powerful autonomous entity that holds significant territory and resources.
The truth is that President Obama was hell-bent on getting out of Iraq even if it meant losing the war that President Bush had won. The Anbar Awakening scuttled al-Qa’ida in Iraq. Sunnis kicked the terrorists out of northern and western Iraq, erasing their footprint in cities like Fallujah, Tikrit, Baghdad, Mosul and Kirkuk. Now ISIS has recaptured most of western and northern Iraq, including Fallujah, Mosul and Tikrit. Here’s a map of the territory now controled by ISIS:
Thanks to President Obama’s insistence on getting out of Iraq regardless of the consequences, radical Sunni Islamists now control most of Iraq and Syria. Thanks to President Obama’s decision to let al-Qa’ida establish a Muslim caliphate in Fallujah, Mosul and Tikrit, hundreds of soldiers paid the ultimate sacrifice for nothing.
That’s just getting started. These terrorists will use that territory to train terrorists to spread jihad throughout the world. That will happen even though President Obama won’t admit that. It won’t happen during the last 2 years of his administration but it’ll happen as sure as the sun sets in the west.
This information should frighten westerners:
The assault has left the terror group in control of the city’s airport, army base and other vital infrastructure. It provided them with cash from the city’s banks and weapons from the local military posts.
In other words, this terrorist network has the wherewithal to plan attacks, buy the material for those attacks and have the sanctuary to train terrorists for a new round of terrorist attacks anywhere in the world. It’s a safe bet those attacks won’t be focused on Russia or Iran. It’s assumed those terrorist attacks will first hit Israel, western Europe and the United States.
Unfortunately, this administration hasn’t demonstrated that they care about this new terrorist organization. This administration talks about destroying “core al-Qa’ida.” ISIS is like core al-Qa’ida on steroids and HGH.
Thanks to President Obama’s decision to lose the war in Iraq, whether that was intentional or not, and his decision to get out of Afghanistan after releasing the Taliban 5 and his decision to side with the Iranian mullahs while Iranians were protesting their elections, President Obama has made southwest Asia and the Middle East a hotbed for terrorism.
The world will be a far more dangerous place to live than when he was sworn in. Check back later today for Part II of this series.
The select committee tasked with finding out what happened in Benghazi is an intellectual mismatch. On one side, you’ve got MSNBC’s Chuck Todd, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Adam Schiff, (D-Calif.) On the other side is Rep. Trey Gowdy, (R-SC). While it’s a mismatch in terms of intellectual heft, it wouldn’t improve if the sides were evenly matched. Chairman Gowdy would still win the debate.
Make no mistake about this. Chuck Todd didn’t attempt to hide his bias:
CHUCK TODD: Congressman Gowdy, you’ve heard that Nancy Pelosi would like it to be an even number on the select committee. Obviously some Democrats are even talking about boycotting it. But if you’ve got the House Democratic leader already willing to negotiate on the size of the committee, why not take her up on it? Why not–doesn’t it help the credibility of your investigation if it is truly an even split between the two parties?
TREY GOWDY: Well Chuck, do you challenge the credibility of the Senate Judiciary Committee because it’s certainly not evenly split? Neither is the House Judiciary.
TODD: Well this is different though. This is a select committee and select committees are different. Look I know what the previous history is. I understand that, but my point is–don’t you want to — this has a whiff of politics to it. To some people more than a whiff. Don’t you agree that if you accept her terms you actually get more credibility, which I assume is something you’d want.
It’s sad that Todd bought into Ms. Pelosi’s gimmick, though it isn’t surprising. Democrats will consistently criticize the work of this committee because they want people distracted from the fact that
President Obama and Hillary Clinton couldn’t be found while the terrorist attack was happening. Democrats certainly don’t want people to notice that the Obama administration didn’t properly deploy the military prior to the anniversary of 9/11.
Finally, Democrats can’t afford to have it get out that President Obama and Secretary Clinton ignored Christopher Stevens’ urgent cables asking for more security. If people notice that, they’ll know that Hillary isn’t qualified to be the next commander-in-chief.
The early signals from Chairman Gowdy indicate that there won’t be lots of open hearings for the committee. Instead, it sounds like the committee’s work will focus on getting important documents from the administration, then deposing witnesses based on the information they get from the administration.
I’m betting that most of the reporters covering Chairman Gowdy’s press conference could answer Chairman Gowdy’s questions:
Chairman Gowdy’s last statement has some bite to it. The media deserve every bit of it.
Jane Mayer’s post is filled with leftist propaganda. Check this BS out:
Ever since militant jihadists killed four Americans, including the U.S. Ambassador, in an attack on a U.S. diplomatic outpost in that remote Libyan town two years ago, House Republicans have kept up a drumbeat of insinuation. They have already devoted thirteen hearings, twenty-five thousand pages of documents, and fifty briefings to the topic, which have turned up nothing unexpected. Kerry’s predecessor, Hillary Clinton, has already accepted responsibility for the tragedy, and the State Department has issued a critical independent report on diplomatic security, resulting in the dismissal of four employees.
First, Hillary hasn’t admitted that she saw the urgent cables from Christopher Stevens, the U.S. ambassador to Libya who was needlessly murdered. She still insists that she never saw any of Christopher Stevens’ urgent cables.
If Hillary won’t admit that Christopher Stevens’ urgent cables reached her, she couldn’t have “accepted responsibility” for her failures.
Second, Hillary hasn’t said where she was while the firefight was raging. The only thing we know about what she did during the attack is that she issued a statement about the anti-Islamic video triggering “protests” that led to Christopher Stevens’ assassination.
Third, the only things we know about President Obama’s whereabouts during the attack are that he never went to the the White House Situation Room and he was in the Oval Office for a briefing with Leon Panetta around 5:00 pm ET.
Contrary to Ms. Mayer’s statement, not knowing where the top 2 national security officials were during the terrorist attack is, to use Joe Biden’s language, a big effing deal. Saying that the hearings haven’t “turned up anything unexpected” is an outright lie.
Fourth, calling the ARB report an “independent report” is whitewashing. It certainly wasn’t a thorough investigation. Mostly, it was a sloppily-put-together report that insinuated, as Charles Krauthammer put it, that the State Department building caused the deaths of Christopher Stevens.
Further, the chanting points that the administration has given the various committees thousands of documents is insulting. If the Obama administration was so forthcoming with pertinent information, why did the committees just hear last week about the Ben Rhodes email instructing Susan Rice to lie about what triggered the Benghazi terrorist attack?
Testimony by Brig. Gen. Robert Lovell, USAF Ret., the chief intelligence officer for AFRICOM during the attack, said that AFRICOM knew almost instantly that this was a pre-planned, precision military operation conducted by terrorists. Further, AFRICOM knew that the military operation didn’t happen after protests turned violent.
In short, most of the things that the Obama administration told the various committees has either been proven unreliable, to put it politely, or they’ve been proven to be outright lies.
Technorati: Media Bias, New Yorker Magazine, Hillary Clinton, Leon Panetta, President Obama, National Security, Benghazi Terrorist Attack, Democrats, Robert Lovell, Chief Intelligence Officer, AFRICOM, Congressional Testimony, Investigation, Intelligence
In this short 95-second video, Brit Hume utterly demolishes Jane Harman’s attempt to explain away the Benghazi talking points from Ben Rhodes:
Here’s the transcript of Hume’s exchange with Harman:
HARMAN: I would call that an intelligence failure. And, by the way, this was an intelligence failure. But it wasn’t a conspiracy. And there aren’t aliens in Area 51 and Vince Foster wasn’t murdered. And it’s time to move on and focus on the real problems in Libya and other problems that affect the —
BRIT HUME, FOX NEWS SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: You’re right, there wasn’t a conspiracy in the United States to mount the Benghazi attack. The question — that’s not the question. The question was whether in the aftermath of the attack, when the administration sent its U.N. ambassador out to explain it to everybody, and she did so falsely, that there wasn’t a conspiracy to create the false talking points that she used?
I’m not talking about the CIA talking points. I’m talking about the talking points used on that program that day which were monumentally misleading and were — and have since been shown to be false and based on no intelligence of any consequence that we know of.
HARMAN: All right. And my answer to that is no, there wasn’t a conspiracy. They didn’t turn out to be accurate.
HUME: Well, how did it happen? Well, how did it happen?
HARMAN: I think that people made at the time their best guess at the facts.
HUME: Wait a minute. But where did the idea that the video had anything to do with Benghazi come from?
HARMAN: Where did it come from?
HARMAN: I think it came from people who weren’t sure about it.
HUME: Well, can you identify anybody? Can you identify any CIA information? Can you identify any source?
WALLACE: Ben Rhodes talked about the video or the movie five times in this memo. Only five times.
HARMAN: I — my view is, having been around at the time, that this not deliberately misleading. It turned out to be wrong but it was not deliberately misleading.
Harman looks foolish in this exchange because she’s spinning the administration’s chanting points. Responding to Hume’s question of how the anti-Islam video became part of Ambassador Rice’s, Harman said “I think that people made at the time their best guess at the facts.”
That’s stunning. Harman essentially admitted that the administration was making this stuff up. Harman essentially admitted that they weren’t relying on hardcopy intel from Libya from US intelligence assets stationed in Libya.
There’s more to this than just not telling the truth that Sunday morning after the terrorist attack that killed 4 American patriots. It’s that the story was used repeatedly by President Obama, Hillary Clinton and Jay Carney in a variety of settings.
Harman’s saying that this was just a case of people making “at the time their best guess at the facts” isn’t sufficient. The reality is that this administration, if they can be believed, repeatedly relied on people making “at the time their best guess at the facts.”
Saying that’s an implausable explanation is understatement.
With Benghazi, there isn’t a clever twist like in the movies. What happened in the aftermath of the terrorist attack in Benghazi is that the administration lied through its teeth so it didn’t look utterly incompetent heading into the final stretch of the campaign.
Finally, Brig. Gen. Lovell testified this week that he watched events unfold in real time and that there wasn’t a protest about an anti-Islamic video. Compare that with the fact that hours after the attack, Hillary issued a statement blaming the anti-Islamic video starting a protest that suddenly turned violent.
If I’m forced to choose which person to trust, I’ll trust the chief intelligence officer for Africom over the politically-motivated Secretary of State 100% of the time.
Bret Baier’s interview with Tommy Vietor, the former spokesman for the NSA, is feisty but it’s more informative than feisty. Here’s a brief clip of the interview:
This sentence jumps off the page:
VIETOR: He told Tom Donnilon and his joint chiefs and his SecDef to begin moving all military assets into the region.
This is significant because of what was happening throughout northern Africa, which Andy McCarthy highlights beautifully in this article:
As we have covered here before (see, e.g., here), the release and return to Egypt of the Blind Sheik, Omar Abdel Rahman (whom I prosecuted in the Nineties), has been a cause célèbre in Egypt for many years. On September 10, 2012, the day before rioting at the U.S. embassy in Cairo, an Egyptian weekly, El Fagr, reported that several jihadist organizations, including the Blind Sheik’s group (Gamaat al-Islamia, or the Islamic Group) and al-Qaeda emir Ayman al-Zawahiri’s group (Egyptian Islamic Jihad), were threatening to burn the American embassy in Cairo to the ground. The promised action against the embassy was an effort to extort the release of Abdel Rahman and other jihadists jailed by the United States.
Apparently, the administration didn’t take the Blind Sheikh’s son’s threat seriously. That’s apparent because, according to Mr. Vietor, more than 24 hours later, President Obama still hadn’t moved military assets into the region.
That’s incredible for multiple reasons. First, it’s the anniversary of 9/11. That alone is reason to preposition troops and put them on high alert. Second, the Blind Sheikh’s sone threatened to raid the Cairo embassy and take hostages in an attempt to free his terrorist father. Third, the riots at the Cairo Embassy happened as predicted, with the hostage-taking the only thing that didn’t happen. Fourth, the distance between Cairo and Benghazi is only 400 miles by air. A flight that distance takes less than an hour in the Navy’s and Air Force’s fastest jets.
This begs a totally new set of questions that haven’t been asked yet.
First, why didn’t President Obama and Secretary Clinton take threats seriously enough to preposition troops in the eastern Mediterranean Sea? Second, why didn’t President Obama order military assets be moved into the Mediterranean when the Cairo attacks happened as predicted? They started 4 hours before the initial attack on Benghazi. Third, why didn’t President Obama head to the Situation Room the minute the first reports of the Cairo riots happened? According to Mr. Vietor, President Obama never went to the Situation Room.
President Obama and his administration spent an entire convention bragging about what a great national security president he was. Vice President Biden said that “bin Laden is dead and Detroit is alive.” Then-Sen. Kerry said “Ask Osama bin Laden if he’s better off now than he was 4 years ago.”
The reality is that President Obama, Secretary of Defense Panetta and Secretary Clinton didn’t position military assets in the Mediterranean. Thanks to their inaction and inattentiveness, 4 American patriots were murdered by an emboldened group of terrorists. Those terrorists still haven’t been brought to justice.
It’s time we got a real commander-in-chief who worries more about Las Vegas fundraisers than he worried about 4 American patriots who were murdered.
Technorati: Tommy Vietor, President Obama, Hillary Clinton, Leon Panetta, Situation Room, Cairo Protests, Benghazi Terrorist Attack, Christopher Stevens, Blind Sheikh, 9/11, John Kerry, Joe Biden, Bret Baier, Fundraiser, Election 2012
When it comes to energy issues, Rolf Westgard is worth listening to. Apparently, though, he’s developed a habit of hearing what wasn’t said:
More than 90 percent of Crimeans vote to rejoin Russia, and Russia gets ready to annex Crimea. The West protests the referendum with threats of sanctions.
We have short memories, having forgotten how Texas, New Mexico, and California were “annexed” from Mexico. Then, we didn’t even wait for a vote.
Republican war drums are rolling, accusing Obama of not getting tough. Sen. Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, has blown his trumpet in stating, regarding Ukraine, that we have a “weak and indecisive president” who “invites aggression.”
He must know there is nothing militarily that any American president could or would have done to deter Putin in this situation.
That’s shameful. “Republican war drums” aren’t rolling, as Westgard accuses. The sharpest Republican foreign policy/national security minds have said that arming Ukraine while reaching missile defense agreements with Poland and the Czech Republic would tell Putin that his expansionist ambitions have consequences without going to war.
That President Obama has refused taking that step, instead opting for sending Ukrainians MREs instead of actual weapons proves President Obama is “a weak and indecisive president.” I never thought I’d live to see the say that I’d see a wimpier president than Jimmy Carter. Suffice it to say that I’ve lived to see that day.
That’s only part of how to make Putin rethink his expansionist ambitions. Last week, I heard a pundit say that Putin’s the 800-pound gorilla in the room. That’s BS. Putin’s acting like the 800-pound gorilla, which isn’t the same as being the 800-pound gorilla.
Dramatically increasing American oil and natural gas production would dramatically hurt the Russian economy, which is heavily reliant on oil revenues. Those of us who lived through the 1980s remember that President Reagan used a multi-pronged approach in bringing the then-Soviet Union to its knees. First, Reagan built up the military, which Jimmy Carter had decimated. Next, Reagan made the U.S. economy the envy of the world, ushering in 6 straight quarters of economic growth that exceeded 5% annual growth. Finally, he deregulated the oil industry, which devastated the Soviet economy.
That’s how President Reagan acted forcefully while demolishing the Soviet Union without firing a shot. That’s what mainstream Republicans are pushing for today. That’s the opposite of Dr. Westgard’s accusations. The difference is that I can verify my statements. Dr. Westgard can’t verify his accusations.
Technorati: Russia, Vladimir Putin, Soviet Empire, Crimean Peninsula, Ukraine, President Obama, Jimmy Carter, Appeasement, Democrats, President Reagan, Missile Defense, Economic Growth, Deregulation, Oil Revenues, GOP
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s passion for school choice is eloquently laid out in Gov. Jindal’s op-ed. First, Gov. Jindal makes the case against the status quo:
In New York, Mayor Bill de Blasio has embarked on a systematic campaign to destroy the city’s burgeoning charter school movement. He’s diverting more than $200 million in funding marked for charter schools, and has also thrown hundreds of students out of their promised school buildings. He has also declared his intent to nullify arrangements that allow charters to locate in existing public schools rent-free.
The mayor’s open warfare against Eva Moskowitz, who founded a network of 22 charter schools, has all the markings of a petulant tyrant holding low-income students hostage. De Blasio has said, “There’s no way in hell Eva Moskowitz should get free rent” — as if the 6,700 students in the charter schools she runs were a mere afterthought in his personal vendetta against a fellow Democrat.
Last May, he told a teachers-union forum that Moskowitz “has to stop being tolerated, enabled, supported.” Yes, by all means, let’s not “tolerate” someone behind a movement to empower parents and students with more — and better — education choices. This woman who is making it possible for low-income kids to have an equal opportunity for a quality education must be stopped.
Gov. Jindal gets it. He’s consistently talked about school choice in the context of giving students a shot at the American Dream. He’s even got a history of fighting for his policies:
In Louisiana, we know a thing or two about government authorities meddling in parents’ right to choose the schools that are best for their children. President Obama’s Justice Department filed a lawsuit trying to impede our program that gives parents of low-income students in failing schools an opportunity to attend a better school. Fully nine in 10 students participating in the program are minorities, yet the Justice Department seeks to block the program on the grounds that it would lead to racial segregation. The lawsuit would be funny if it weren’t so sad — and if the lives of so many young African-American children weren’t at stake.
President Obama’s Justice Department filed their lawsuit to placate their allies in the teachers union. That’s the same reason why Mayor de Blasio is implementing his anti-choice policies in NYC. It’s shameful that President Obama and Mayor de Blasio worry more about placating their special interest allies than they worry about doing what’s right for the nation.
In that respect, President Obama and Mayor de Blasio are showing their anti-American stripes. If they cared about making life better for everyone, they wouldn’t be attempting to implement these misguided policies.
Thankfully, people are standing up for themselves and their families rather than just caving in the face of the Left’s peer pressure.
Gov. Jindal understands this, which is why I think he’s the favorite to be the GOP presidential nominee. It isn’t thatI haven’t notice that other polls show Christie or Bush or Rand Paul leading or near the top. It’s that Gov. Jindal has a lengthy history of domestic policy successes without angering the GOP’s conservative base.
Gov. Jindal has championed school choice. He’s pushed tax reform. Those are definitely issues conservatives will positively respond to. Most importantly, he hasn’t hugged President Obama like Gov. Christie and he hasn’t been a foreign policy pacifist like Sen. Paul.
Technorati: Bobby Jindal, School Choice, Tax Reform, Chris Christie, Rand Paul, Pacifism, National Security, GOP, President Obama, Eric Holder, Justice Department, Bill de Blasio, Teachers Unions, Democrats, Election 2014
This article is proof that Hillary Clinton is worried that her incompetence on foreign policy and national security matters will cost her the White House:
In recent weeks, as the standoff over Ukraine escalated, Hillary Clinton did something that she never did as secretary of State: She put considerable distance between herself and the president she served loyally for four years. While Barack Obama cautiously warned Vladimir Putin to back off his claims on Ukraine, Clinton rolled out a rhetorical cannon, comparing the Russian president’s moves to the seizure of territory by Adolf Hitler that set off World War II. Her comments were so harsh and controversial that she was forced to walk them back a bit, saying, “I’m not making a comparison, certainly, but I am recommending that we perhaps can learn from this tactic that has been used before.”
Clinton’s remarks appeared to be an indication of two things. One, she’s concerned enough about shoring up her reputation for toughness that she may indeed be thinking about running for president in 2016. Clinton offered up, in other words, a rare and enticing hint about the question that everyone in the politics game is asking these days. Undoubtedly she knows that the effort she led as secretary of State in 2009, an attempted “reset” of relations with Russia that included a new arms treaty, now looks naive in the face of Putin’s repudiation of Obama over Ukraine and his lack of cooperation on other issues, such as resolution of the Syrian civil war. Two, Clinton could be worried that by the time the next presidential season rolls around, what was once seen as one of Obama’s stronger points—foreign policy—could easily become a liability to whomever is seeking the Democratic nomination.
Hillary’s tough-as-nails image is just that — an image. It doesn’t have anything to do with reality. She played the fool on the world stage by handing Russia the now-infamous Reset Button:
She’s the one that announced the United States was reneging on its commitment to their allies in Poland and the Czech Republic. There’s no doubt that President Obama agreed with these policies. Still, there’s little doubt that Hillary thought these were the right decisions at the time.
Hillary is nothing if not a shrewd politician. She isn’t hesitating in throwing President Obama under the bus for being a pacifist. It’s apparent she thinks she has to look tough on the international stage. The best thing that Republican presidential candidates can do is question Hillary’s competence, highlighting her appeasement-first attitude with regards to Benghazi, her dovishness towards Iran and her naivete towards Putin’s Russia.
For all her supposed foreign policy expertise, she’s been wrong on almost as many national security issues as John Kerry, which is frightening considering he’s been making national security mistakes for almost 30 years.
Just when President Obama, Vice President Biden, John Kerry and Hillary Clinton thought it couldn’t get worse, it did. This article provides the salt for these clowns’ open wounds:
First, Sarah Palin. In 2008, the Alaskan conservative warned that Putin was on the prowl. Quote: “After the Russian army invaded the nation of Georgia, Senator Obama’s reaction was one of moral indecision and equivalence, the kind of response that would only encourage Russia’s Putin to invade Ukraine next.”
Wow. Mrs Palin not only got the country that Putin would threaten right, she also predicted the reason behind it. Obama’s “indecision and equivalence” over Iran, Egypt and, most importantly, Syria, has probably encouraged Putin to believe that there would be next-to-no Western response to an attack on Ukraine.
This was highly predictable. It’s only surprising to the children at Foggy Bottom and in the West Wing. They either didn’t see this coming or they didn’t care. History won’t award a gold star to any of these fools for their decisions prior to Russia’s invading Crimea. (A dunce’s cap for each is the better fit.)
Unfortunately for the Feckless Foursome, the humiliation doesn’t (and shouldn’t) stop there:
Second, Mitt Romney. Romney’s foreign policy approach was broadly mocked in 2012. The country was keen to withdraw from overseas conflict in the wake of Iraq and Afghanistan and Mitt’s vague neo-conservatism seemed out of step with the public mood. Sometimes, said the critics, it came off as something that his advisers were coaching him to say; a nod and a hint to AIPAC rather than a strongly held belief. Rachel Maddow concluded, “It’s not just that Romney is uninformed; it’s that he hasn’t figured out how to fake it.”
Romney confirmed the sceptics’ worst fears when he described Russia as America’s “number one geopolitical foe.” Barack Obama lashed out with some adolescent sass: “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because. The Cold War’s been over for 20 years.”
Actually, people who lived through the 80′s are praying that we’d that type of leadership back. That was when Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Margaret Thatcher and Pope John-Paul II brought down the Soviet Empire. That was when Jeane Kirkpatrick and Lech Walesa contributed to the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The Feckless Foursome didn’t notice or didn’t care that Putin still thinks that the collapse of the Soviet Union was “the collapse of the century“:
Mr Putin therefore went out of his way to extol the virtues of democracy and talk up Russia’s potential for foreign investment. He lamented, however, the collapse of the USSR in 1991, calling it “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe”.
That’s quite the contrast in sobriety. The Feckless Foursome insisted that Russia was a friend that didn’t have expansionist goals, despite Putin’s expansionist rhetoric. While Rachel Maddow was making herself look stupid, Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin said unpopular things that turned out to be 100% right.
Finally, I’d love asking Mrs. Clinton how that reset button thingy is working out lately.
Technorati: President Obama, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Reset Button, Vladimir Putin, Russian Bear, Soviet Empire, Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin, Ronald Reagan, Tear Down This Wall, George H.W. Bush, Margaret Thatcher, Pope John-Paul II, Lech Walesa, National Security, Cold War
People who didn’t see the Obama-O’Reilly confrontation on Super Bowl Sunday should follow this link to read the transcript of the interview. Saying that President Obama didn’t look at the top of his game is understatement. Here’s something where President Obama looked foolish:
O’REILLY: All right.
Was it the biggest mistake of your presidency to tell the nation over and over, if you like your insurance, you can keep your insurance?
OBAMA: Oh, Bill, you’ve got a long list of my mistakes of my presidency…
O’REILLY: But, no, really, for you…
OBAMA: — as I’ve (INAUDIBLE)…
O’REILLY: — wasn’t that the biggest one?
OBAMA: But this is — this is one that I regret and I’ve said I regretted, in part because we put in a grandfather clause in the original law saying that, in fact, you were supposed to be able to keep it. It obviously didn’t cover everybody that we needed to and that’s why we changed it, so that we further grandfathered in folks and many people who thought originally, when they got that cancellation notice, they couldn’t keep it or not (INAUDIBLE)…
That’s an outright lie. It wasn’t a mistake that the grandfather clause offered little protection. It was intentionally written to force people off of their health insurance policies and into the exchanges. To quote Charles Krauthammer, it wasn’t a glitch. It was a feature.
President Obama’s deceitfulness hurt him in this exchange, too:
O’REILLY: All right. Libya, House Armed Services testimony, General Carter Ham, you know, the general?
OBAMA: Yes. Right.
O’REILLY: Security in Africa.
O’REILLY: He testified that on the day that the ambassador was murdered and the three other Americans, all right, he told Secretary Panetta it was a terrorist attack. Shortly after Ham, General Ham, said that, Secretary Panetta came in to you.
O’REILLY: Did he tell you, Secretary Panetta, it was a terrorist attack?
OBAMA: You know what he told me was that there was an attack on our compound…
O’REILLY: He didn’t tell you…he didn’t use the word “terror?”
OBAMA: You know, in the heat of the moment, Bill, what folks are focused on is what’s happening on the ground, do we have eyes on it, how can we make sure our folks are secure…
O’REILLY: Because I just want to get this on the record…did he tell you it was a terror attack?
OBAMA: Bill — and what I’m — I’m answering your question. What he said to me was, we’ve got an attack on our compound. We don’t know yet…
O’REILLY: No terror attack?
OBAMA: We don’t know yet who’s doing it. Understand, by definition, Bill, when somebody is attacking our compound. That’s an act of terror, which is how I characterized it the day after it happened. So the question ends up being who, in fact, was attacking us?
O’REILLY: But it’s more than that…because of Susan Rice.
OBAMA: No, it…
O’REILLY: It’s more than that because if Susan Rice goes out and tells the world that it was a spontaneous demonstration…off a videotape but your…
O’REILLY: — your commanders and the secretary of Defense know it’s a terror attack…
OBAMA: Now, Bill…
O’REILLY: — I’m just confused.
OBAMA: And I’m trying to explain it to, if you want to listen. The fact of the matter is is that people understood, at the time, something very dangerous was happening, that we were focused on making sure that we did everything we can, to protect them. In the aftermath, what became clear was that the security was lax, that not all the precautions and that needed to be taken were taken and both myself and Secretary Clinton and others indicated as much.
First, it shouldn’t have taken time to know that security was lax. Ambassabor Stevens had been screaming at the top of his lungs that al-Qa’ida was gaining strength in eastern Libya. There was a gigantic hole in the wall at the consulate. Secretary Clinton and President Obama both should’ve known about that because that isn’t routine information that’s handled by people low in the food chain. That’s information they need to know about. That’s why I’m certain that both of them knew about the deteriorating conditions in Benghazi.
It’s more than that, though. O’Reilly is right in identifying Susan Rice’s appearances on the Sunday morning talk shows as a game-changing event. There’s no reason for the administration to send out someone who wasn’t properly informed. That’s if you believe that she was ill-informed, which I don’t believe. If she spred misinformation on those shows, then we’re looking at an administration lying to protect themselves during a political campaign.
This part is especially damning:
OBAMA: Bill, listen, I’ve gone through this and we have had multiple hearings on it. What happens is you have an attack like this taking place and you have a mix of folks who are just troublemakers. You have folks who have an ideological agenda.
O’REILLY: All right.
OBAMA: You have some who are affiliated with terrorist organizations. You have some that are not. But the main thing that all of us have to take away from this is our diplomats are serving in some very dangerous places.
The attacks weren’t random acts of violence. The military knew within moments that this was a well-coordinated attack executed with military precision. Right before Rice appeared on CBS’s Face the Nation, Bob Schieffer interviewed the Libyan president. Libya’s president said without hesitation that this was a terrorist attack carried out with military precision.
Rice then insists that it was the result of a riot that started because people objected to an internet video by an obscure videographer. That’s utterly laughable, especially considering the fact that most people in northern Africa don’t have access to the internet.
By this point, President Obama is clearly frustrated. He’s frustrated because the lapdog media doesn’t insist on getting to the bottom of things. This exchange shows how frustrated President Obama is:
O’REILLY: I’ve got to get to the IRS…
O’REILLY: but I just want to say that they’re, your detractors believe that you did not tell the world it was a terror attack because your campaign didn’t want that out.
OBAMA: Bill, think about…
O’REILLY: That’s what they believe.
OBAMA: — and they believe it because folks like you are telling them that.
O’REILLY: No, I’m not telling them that.
O’REILLY: I’m asking you whether you were told…
OBAMA: But — and what I’m saying is…
O’REILLY: — it was a terror attack and you…
OBAMA: — and what I’m saying is that is inaccurate.
First, President Obama accuses O’Reilly of telling lies to the people. Then he says that he simply asked a question. Finally, he said that O’Reilly said some things that weren’t accurate.
Essentially, what happened is that President Obama accused a journalist of lying to the people; when that didn’t work, he insisted that he was simply asking a question. When that didn’t work, President Obama resorted to form by accusing Mr. O’Reilly of people inaccurate information.
What’s inescapable is the fact that President Obama isn’t skilled at truthfully and fully answering tough questions. It’s easy to see it frustrates him.