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Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

Feeling Morassy After Saving Benghazi



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There’s a whole lot of Libya talk in today’s Morning Jolt. Long as this excerpt may seem, there’s even more in the version on its way to subscribers!

The Big Libya Speech: Pbbbbbbbbt!

First, the good news. If you yearned for a president who could encourage democracy in words that echoed former President George W. Bush… well, you’ve got one, Daniel Foster observes.

I’ll let the Ace of Spades lead off the critique of Obama’s big, almost-prime-time speech:

“We Took A Series of Swift Steps:” Oh, you mean after you dithered around with the same basic facts for three weeks.

You mean after all that delay, you finally made a decision, and then the military acted swiftly.

I Refused to Let That Happen:” Ah, okay, just as long as I know who the hero is here.

By the way, he’s super-proud that he waited until the last possible moment to save Benghazi (but none of the towns and cities along the decimated way to Benghazi). Apparently those other towns he let be demolished as he dithered didn’t count.

Only the dramatic, last-second decision to spare Benghazi specifically should matter.

Hilarious: He says that he’s all about getting other countries to bear the burdens. He says, to that end, that he’s transferred command to NATO.

Um, so, if I’m getting this right, our pilots and seamen are still fighting this war, they’re just being bossed around by a foreign general, right?

And that general isn’t actually in the fight, right?

Seems to me that all Obama is doing is distancing himself from any possible failure while keeping our troops in harm’s way.

Many on the Right agreed with Ace that the speech had some big tasks before it, and Obama whiffed big-time.

It’s somewhat nice to know that when you watch our president step up to the plate, tap his cleats, call his shot, and then promptly go down swinging on three pitches, there are a lot of like-minded folks on Twitter who can find something to laugh about in the whole mess.

Caleb Howe offered perhaps the most succinct summary: “Obama: I authorized this war that is not a war, which is narrowly focused but broad in scope, so we could lead. As helpers.”

Jeff Emanuel notices, “For a supposed history savant, Obama misstated the amount of time it took to effect regime change in Iraq by about 7 yrs, 11 months.”

Brian Lemon: “The Nobel Peace Prize winning President just made the case for invading almost anywhere.”

Greg Pollowitz watched MSNBC so we wouldn’t have to, and said that Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell sounded ready to give Obama “another Nobel for bombing Libya.” To which Kevin Binversie responds, “Ah, yes, the Nobel War Prize. Rarely given!”

Josh Trevino: “The President’s war metrics rely on projections of Libyans created or saved.” He also noted, “This is the first time in American history that a President has simultaneously set a war aim and disavowed means to obtain it.”

Jim Treacher: “It was almost as good as the first time I heard this speech, when Bush gave it.”

John Ondrasik – you know, the guy from Five for Fighting who’s known for the Superman song and “One Hundred Years” – offers one of the night’s key observations: “Wonder how candidate Obama (07-08) would react to Pres Obama speech on today’s war.” Heck, the Barack Obama from 2003 probably would have heckled him.

Of course, some of the post-speech observations took a more ominous tone. Patrick Ruffini: “The only thing more dangerous than sending our sons and daughters into harms way is sending them without meaning it.”

Hugh Hewitt show producer Duane Patterson wondered, “so if you’re Gaddafi and you hear Obama promise he will not force you out militarily, doesn’t that encourage you to dig in?”

The speech did have a few fans. Eli Lake, national security reporter extraordinaire at the Washington Times, declares, “It was a good speech tonight for Barack Obama. Note the Samantha Power influence. Interesting to see Dems rediscover their talons. The speech also cements the following: Democrats are bombers and Republicans are occupiers. As a general rule Democrats = air power/Republicans = invasion… This was not always the case of course. But in the post cold war, Clinton and Obama are bombers/ both Bushes raised armies.”


Tags: Barack Obama


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