Posts Tagged ‘false’

Obama DOJ Now Forced To Admit It LIED To United States Senate

December 5, 2011

Here’s some of what Republican Charles Grassley wrote about this far worse-than-Watergate (the Plummers didn’t murder any federal agents, let alone 200 innocent people) scandal:

The letter which Deputy Assistant Attorney General Jason Weinstein participated in drafting, and which Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer was sent drafts of, stated: “ATF makes every effort to interdict weapons that have been purchased illegally and prevent their transportation to Mexico.” Weinstein knew this was clearly false because he knew about gunwalking in Operation Wide Receiver, which he brought to Breuer’s attention in April 2010. Had Breuer read this letter (he is unclear if he read it), he would have known this sentence was false as well.—Senator Charles Grassley

Obama’s US Attorney for Arizona, Dennis Burke, had been saying demonizing crap about Grassley like:

Grassley’s assertions regarding the Arizona investigation and the weapons recovered at the BP Agent Terry murder scene are based on categorical falsehoods. I worry that ATF will take 8 months to answer this when they should be refuting its underlying accusations right now.”—Dennis Burke (former) U.S. Attorney for Arizona

He said demonizing and self-righteous crap about Grassley like:

“I am so personally outraged by Senator Grassley’s falsehoods,” former Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke wrote in an email regarding the allegation that a weapon connected to the ATF operation was found at the murder scene of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. “It is one of the lowest acts I have ever seen in politics.”

But you see, Grassley isn’t the one with the integrity problem.  It is everybody who has anything whatsoever to do with Barack Hussein Obama and Eric Holder.

The Attorney General and his office is a bunch of documented LIARS.  It is now officially the Department of INJUSTICE under Obama and his stooge Eric Holder.

The New York Post has this denunciation of the Obama Attorney General’s Office:

It was all a lie. The angry denials, the high dudgeon, the how-dare-you accuse-us bleating emanating from Eric Holder’s Justice Department these last nine months.

Operation Fast and Furious — the “botched” gun-tracking program run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives did, in fact, deliberately allow some 2,000 high-powered weapons to be sold to Mexican drug cartel agents and then waltzed across the border and into the Mexican drug wars — just as Sen. Chuck Grassley and Rep. Darrell Issa, who are leading the congressional investigations, have charged all along.

Michael Walsh concludes his piece by saying:

It’s time for the months of lies to end — but don’t hold your breath. The administration recently sealed the court records relating to agent Terry’s murder and — a year later — the one man arrested hasn’t been tried.”

Obama Attorney General Eric Holder is essentially trying to argue at this point that, “Okay, I’m a liar, and you’ve caught me telling lies. But like my boss who blames everything on Bush, it was really some other guy’s fault.

DOJ Details How it Lied About Fast and Furious to Senate Judiciary Committee
Posted on December 3, 2011 by

Yesterday night, the Justice Department released nearly 1,400 internal documents and e-mails showing in tortuous detail how a February 4, 2011 letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee came to have misrepresentations about Operation Fast and Furious. The letter stated that the ATF had made every effort to interdict guns before they reached Mexico, and that it had never allowed straw purchases to occur. Both these assertions have proven to be false. Knowingly lying to Congress is a criminal offense, so this document dump should be taken as an attempt by high level Justice Department officials to avoid prosecution, and shift the blame to others.

The documents appear to show, as reported by NPR, that:

— The basis for the inaccurate statements in the letter appears to have originated among people in the U.S. Attorney’s office in Arizona and among ATF officials earlier this year … Also at the meeting were the ATF’s top congressional liaison and a high level deputy named Billy Hoover … the U.S. Attorney’s office in Arizona passed along inaccurate information about the length of the gun trafficking operation and the timing of when guns were purchased.

— Jason Weinstein, a senior aide in the Justice Department’s criminal division, played a key role in drafting the February 2011 letter … Justice officials say Weinstein relied on the ATF and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in drafting the letter.

— Justice Department Criminal Division chief Lanny Breuer received draft copies of the Feb. 4, 2011 letter from Weinstein and forwarded those messages to his personal email account, which he didn’t share in recent congressional testimony about questionable ATF tactics in gun cases. However, Breuer writes in new correspondence to Congress Friday that “I cannot say for sure whether I saw a draft of the letter…I have no recollection of having done so and given that I was on official travel that week and given the scope of my duties as Assistant Attorney General, I think it is exceedingly unlikely that I did so.” …

— Former Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke, who resigned in August as the gun trafficking scandal intensified, repeatedly urged Justice officials in Washington to “push back” against “categorical falsehoods” coming from whistleblowers inside the ATF and from members of Congress. Burke also had some choice words for Sen. Grassley’s staff, which he said were “acting as willing stooges for the Gun Lobby” and “lobbing this reckless despicable accusation” about ATF. In another message, he tells a colleague that the congressional accusations are “among the lowest acts I have ever seen in politics.” …

In short, the DOJ is trying to say that Dennis Burke and William Hoover provided the false information, that Jason Weinstein drafted the letter but was relying purely on information from Burke and Hoover, and that while Lanny Breuer may have been cc’d drafts of the letter, he cannot remember actually reading those drafts. Meanwhile, Eric Holder was not even involved.

This is all really convenient for Breuer and Holder, as Burke has since resigned, and Hoover–a Deputy Director of the ATF–has been reassigned.

When bureaucrats release a blizzard of documents, there is always the question of whether they are using the sheer number of documents being released to obscure the fact that some important documents are still being withheld.

In particular, we still do not know who authorized Operation Fast and Furious in the first place. According to Justice Department protocol and procedures, it would appear that such an operation would have had to have been approved by both Breuer and Holder, and possibly even signed off on by the President himself. If this is so, then the document trail released today is all subterfuge. The most important internal document–the one that has so far not surfaced–is the one showing who approved of this operation. All these other documents might as well be Christmas decorations.

Two federal agents and more than 200 innocent civilians were murdered as a result of illegal gun purchases overseen and allowed by the ATF.

Related articles

The classic Watergate question applies here: What did Obama or his stooge Eric Holder know and when did he know it?  How far up the Obama sewer did this mess go?  Who authorized this stupid and evil program?

We now know that the DoJ statement about not knowing about Fast and Furious was utterly false.  And we now know that the Obama White House is now saying “we’re withdrawing this letter” that documents the fact that they are LIARS.  We also know that the Obama White House is doing everything it can to stonewall and deceive and lie.

How Obama Managed To Screw Up Even The Killing Of Osama Bin Laden

May 6, 2011

It’s really quite amazing: Barack Obama is a near-total failure even when he finally manages to get something right.

Obama’s disasterous bungling of the aftermath of the killing of bin Laden makes me think about that proverbial idiot who managed to kill the goose that laid the golden eggs.

From the UK Telegraph:

10 ways Barack Obama botched the aftermath of the masterful operation to kill Osama bin Laden
By Toby Harnden World Last updated: May 5th, 2011

The past few days have seemed like an extended amateur hour in the White House as unforced error after unforced error has been made in the handling of the US Government’s message about the killing of bin Laden.

We should not forget the bottom line in this: bin Laden was justifiably and legally killed by brave and skilled US Navy SEALs. The operation was audacious and meticulous in its planning and execution. President Barack Obama made the call to carry out the raid and his decision was vindicated in spades.

Having said that, the messiness since then has taken much of the sheen off this success, temporarily at least. Here’s a summary of what went wrong once the most difficult bit had been achieved:

1. It took nearly three days to decide not to release the photographs. I think there was a case for not releasing the pictures, though on balance I think disclosure would have been best. But whichever way Obama went on this, the decision should have been made quickly, on Monday. By letting the world and his dog debate the issue for so long and then say no made the administration look indecisive and appear that it had something to hide. It will fuel the conspiracy theories. And the pictures will surely be leaked anyway.

2. To say that bin Laden was armed and hiding behind a wife being used as a human shield was an unforgiveable embellishment. The way it was expressed by John Brennan was to mock bin Laden as being unmanly and cowardly. It turned out to be incorrect and gave fuel, again, to conspiracy theories as well as accusations of cover-ups and illegality. Of all the mistakes of the week, this was by far the biggest.

3. It was a kill mission and no one should have been afraid to admit that. Bin Laden was a dead man as soon as the SEAL Team landed. There’s nothing wrong with that but the Obama administration should have been honest about it rather than spinning tales about bin Laden having a gun, reaching for a gun (the latest) and resisting (without saying how he resisted).

4. Too much information was released, too quickly and a lot of it was wrong. When it made the administration look good, the information flowed freely. When the tide turned, Jay Carney, Obama’s spokesman, clammed up completely. I’m a journalist; I like it when people talk about things. But from the administration’s perspective, it would have been much better to have given a very sparse, accurate description of what happened without going into too much detail, especially about the intelligence that led to the compound (an account which is necessarily suspect).

5. Obama tried to claim too much credit. Don’t get me wrong, he was entitled to a lot of credit. but sometimes less is more and it’s better to let facts speak for themselves. We didn’t need official after official to say how “gutsy” Obama was. Far better to have heaped praise on the CIA and SEALs (which, to be fair, was done most of the time) and talked less about Obama’s decision-making. And a nod to President George W. Bush would have been classy – and good politics for Obama.

6. Proof of death was needed. The whole point of the SEAL operation, rather than a B2 bombing that levelled the compound, was to achieve certainty. The administration has DNA evidence, facial recognition evidence and photographic evidence. Some combination of that evidence should have been collated and released swiftly. It’s not enough to say, effectively, “Trust me, I’m Obama” – especially given all the misinformation that was put out.

7. The mission should have been a ‘capture’ one. Notwithstanding 3. above and the legitimacy of killing bin Laden, I think a capture of bin Laden was probably possible and, in the long term, would have been better – not least because of the intelligence that could have been gleaned from interrogating him and the couriers. My hunch is that Obama didn’t want him alive because there would have been uncomfortable issues to address like whether he should be tried, where he should be held (it would have been Guantanamo – obviously) and the techniques for questioning him.

8. Obama’s rhetoric lurched from jingoistic to moralistic. During the initial announcement, Obama said that by killing bin Laden “we are once again reminded that America can do whatever we set our mind to”. If Bush had said that, he would have been mocked and laughed at, with some justification. But by today Obama was all preachy and holier than thou saying: “It is important for us to make sure that very graphic photos of somebody who was shot in the head are not floating around as an incitement to additional violence or as a propaganda tool.  That’s not who we are.  We don’t trot out this stuff as trophies.”

9. Triggering a torture debate was an avoidable own goal. Following on from 3. by discussing the intelligence, the administration walked into the issue of whether enhanced interrogation techniques yielded important information. That was certainly something they could have done without. Politically, it gave something for Republicans to use against Obama.

10. The muddle over Pakistan. Everyone I talk to with knowledge of these things tells me that Pakistan had to have given the green light for the raid in some form. But the Pakistanis, for good reasons, would not want this made public. Rather than say it would not comment on whether Pakistan had harboured bin Laden or was playing a double game, the White House poured petrol on the flames by encouraging criticism of Pakistan. That might have been deserved, but in terms of managing the region it was impolitic. The Pakistanis are clearly riled and the contradictions between the US and Pakistani accounts, again, fuel the conspiracy theories.

All this has meant that this week’s media story has become one about Obama and the White House more than one about the SEALs, the CIA and what killing bin Laden means. That’s exactly the wrong way round.

It’s not enough to say that Obama arrogantly and falsely took too much credit, or even that Obama didn’t give Bush and the programs Bush developed enough credit: Obama personally demonized programs that were essential to finally getting Osama bin Laden, and even launched a vendetta to destroy the professionals who gave us the vital information via his attorney general.

Waterboarding and “enhanced interrogation” were absolutely vital to nailing bin Laden.  Even the career Democrat who was Barack Obama’s handpicked man to run the CIA openly acknowledged that:

Asked by NBC-TV’s Brian Williams about the information obtained from detainees that led to the bin Laden takedown, Panetta replied:  ‘We had multiple series of sources that provided information with regards to this situation.  … Clearly some of it came from detainees [and] they used these enhanced interrogation techniques against some of those detainees.”

When Williams asked whether “waterboarding” was one of those techniques, Panetta replied:  “That’s correct.”

General Michael Hayden, the career intelligence professional who had directed the CIA prior to Leon Panetta, speaking about the CIA program Obama terminated on his second day as president, had this to say:

Michael Hayden said there is no question the CIA program including waterboarding laid the foundation for bin Laden’s capture.

MICHAEL HAYDEN, FMR CIA DIRECTOR ON FOX NEWS RADIO (via telephone): That database was kind of like the home depot of intelligence analysis. You know, it was incredibly detailed stuff.

HERRIDGE: As for its role in identifying this compound in Pakistan –

HAYDEN: It would be very difficult for me to conceive of an operation like the one that took place on Sunday that did not include in its preparation information that came out of the CIA detention program.

It is a well-documented fact, confirmed by both the Republican- and Democrat-appointed Directors of Central Intelligence, that waterboarding led to the breakthrough that finally resulted in nailing Osama bin Laden.

Barack Obama wants to demonize the people and procedures that led to Osama bin Laden’s killing even as he takes credit for what could not possibly have happened without the people and procedures that he demonized.  It is a disgrace.

And Obama is STILL continuing to persecute the CIA professionals who got us the intelligence that got bin Laden via his attorney general attack dog.  He won’t even so much as talk to Holder about his rabid attack dog’s rabid determination to criminalize the professionals whose work led to the result Obama is taking credit forAnd that makes Obama a disgrace.

Then there’s the fact that so many of the events surrounding Barack Obama were staged propaganda.

Of the famous photo supposedly showing Obama and his national security team monitoring and directing the SEAL Team that got Osama bin Laden, we now know that:

Leon Panetta, director of the CIA, revealed there was a 25 minute blackout during which the live feed from cameras mounted on the helmets of the US special forces was cut off.

A photograph released by the White House appeared to show the President and his aides in the situation room watching the action as it unfolded. In fact they had little knowledge of what was happening in the compound.

In an interview with PBS, Mr Panetta said: “Once those teams went into the compound I can tell you that there was a time period of almost 20 or 25 minutes where we really didn’t know just exactly what was going on. And there were some very tense moments as we were waiting for information.

“We had some observation of the approach there, but we did not have direct flow of information as to the actual conduct of the operation itself as they were going through the compound.”

Which is to say that much of the hubub of Obama as commanding figure was simply staged.  It wasn’t real.

Nor were the photos of Obama’s speech announcing that Osama bin Laden had been killed.

And while a liberal might argue that what Obama did has been done before, my response is that there are times when you’ve got to be real and not propaganda, and this was clearly one of those times.

In light of what George Bush did to create programs, build special operations capabilities capable of performing the Pakistan mission that got bin Laden, and even what Barack Obama said during his campaign for president, the decision to capture or kill Osama bin Laden was a no-brainer.

I mean, just imagine the fecal matter that would have struck the rotary oscillator had it emerged that Barack Obama had known for at least six months where Osama bin Laden was – and refused to get him????

That said, the man acted brainless before the decision to get Osama bin Laden, and he’s clearly returned to his brainless form since.

Tea Party Crashers As A Particularly Nasty Species Of Vermin

April 16, 2010

It never would have occurred to me to seriously consider going to a pro-liberal rally to try to “blend in” while carrying some kind of obnoxious sign.

I guess that makes me too honest to be a liberal.

Tea Party movement people have been falsely and maliciously attacked up one side and down the other by the left from the get-go.  First they were mocked as historically ignorant because the first Tea Party was organized due to being taxed without representation, whereas everyone knows that limited government conservatives just have all sorts of “representation” under the current regime.

The thing is, Tea Party people aren’t ignorant of the past; liberals are ignorant of the present.  One of the reasons “Tea” was chosen is because it is an acronym for “Taxed Enough Already.”  Get it, liberals?  It’s an acronym that has a rough – though not exact – parallel to the real deal Tea Party in 1773.

One of the things that makes the Tea Party protesters angry is that a) there is massive and unsustainable spending going on that will one day very soon result in skyrocketing taxes; b) every single Republican voted against the now-proven stimulus boondoggle; and c) that money went to benefits for liberal pork-barrel projects and “too-big-to-fail” bailouts.

We’ve got taxation without representation, and we’ve got a population angry over all the bribes and corruption and sweetheart deals for connected corporations.  And that’s pretty much what happened in 1773, except then it was a lousy king, and now it is an even lousier messiah.

What the left does is kind of like me insulting A.C.O.R.N. because that organization is actually comprised of very different kinds of nuts from actual acorns.

I just wish liberals were so exactingly literalistic when it mattered; such as “interpreting” the Constitution.  But noooooo.  When it really matters, liberals throw the Constitution out the window and cast their gaze instead on “penumbras and emanations” – which amounts to torturing the clearly expressed ideas of the founding fathers until they mean whatever the hell liberals want them to mean.

Liberals have repeatedly demonized the Tea Party movement as a source for hate when all the actual demonstrated incidents of hate have come from THEIR SIDE.

But the left doesn’t have the moral compass possessed by others, and has no sense of shame or hypocrisy.

If one lie or deceitful tactic doesn’t work, they move on to another lie or deceitful tactic.

So we get to the Crashtheteaparty.org movement, from the left, to infiltrate tea party rallies in order to demonize them from within.

The idea is a false-flag style strategy, to bring signs that will make Tea Party rallyers look stupid or racist.

And of course the liberal (Jason Levin) who organized the “crash the tea party” movement is a loathsome turd who in all likelihood broke the law and used official government resources to create his hostile-to-truth movement.

But there will still be leftwing plants aplenty showing up to demonstrate that they don’t care one iota for truth or facts, only for lies and demagoguery.

Here’s a plant carrying a sign at a Tea Party in San Diego intended to make Tea Party people look like a bunch of dumbass conspiracy theorists:

The photographer’s caption reads:

This group of about 4-5 people all with arrow sign pointing to the guy that said either, “plant” or “Not Tea Party” followed this guy around for at least an hour…everywhere he stood.

Here’s another leftwing plant trying to demonize the Tea Party by infiltrating with a message of hate:

Notice the signs of people walking right behind this despicable plant and his message of leftwing hate: “Infiltrator: This person is not with us”; “This person is not part of our group.”

Here’s another picture of leftwing plants trying to undermine the Tea Party with messages of racism and anger.

As an update (on April 17), I initially posted a picture of a guy who turned out to be an actual tea party person who got TOSSED from a Tea Party event for a loathsome sign.  I acknowledged my mistake in the comments when a liberal pointed my mistake.  Having taking down that picture, let me post several more.

Here’s a plant wearing a “Nazi” T-shirt.  Tea Party participants followed with with their “fake” signs until a Tea Partier got in his face until he left.

Here’s another plant wearing a “Skinhead Army” hat and a brand spanking new Nazi shirt, just out of the package:

Here’s a leftwing loon plant carrying a message designed to portray the Tea Party (which is actually composed of people who are more educated and wealthier than the general population) as stupid, uneducated conspiracy theorists.  Again, note the Tea Partiers who have made sure that the mainstream media TV cameras have to work extra hard to isolate the plant for the evening news:

Here’s another particularly offensive message of a leftist plant who is clearly attempting to take a ridiculous slant on the Tea Party’s view of the wisdom of limited federal government.  Again, note the Tea Party’s peaceful response to these dishonest plants: a sign labeled “Provocateur”:

Here’s a plant who didn’t bother with a sign.  He just wore his Hezbollah terrorist outfit, to provide “evidence” that the Tea Party really is a terrorist organization:

Here’s a link to a video of a plant carrying a ridiculous sign calling for an end to military hospitals (which is clearly just such a logical corollary for anyone who opposes ObamaCare, isn’t it?).  He’s interviewed, and it increasingly becomes a real a “Dumber and Even Dumber Yet” moment.

These people may not have the moral intelligence to realize it, but they are genuinely evil.  They couldn’t care less about truth.  They believe only in false demonization and demagoguery as they seek to gain even more illegitimately obtained political power by falsely attacking their opposition.

Furthermore, let’s put it this way: shouldn’t we condemn the people who would hold such signs?  And whose holding these damn hateful signs, wearing these damn hateful clothes, and espousing such idiocy?  The left.

Everything about them is a lie.  They are slanderers, haters, and, yes, a particularly nasty species of vermin.

By contrast, look at the Tea Party attenders.  They’re honest people with an honest message.  And when these dishonest slanderers shows up, the decent Tea Party folk don’t confront them with angry shouts and violence.  They merely hold up signs of their own to confront the lying leftist demagogue.

Truth is encountering lies.  And as usual, all the truth is on the conservatives’ side, and all the lies are on the liberals’ side.  Which is to say, it’s pretty much just another day in America.

Poll Shows Few Americans Believed Obama Mistatement of the Union Speech

January 30, 2010

The Obama deficit of trust in a nutshell:

Deficit of Trust: Most Voters Don’t Believe President’s Assertions About Economy
Saturday, January 30, 2010

During his State-of-the-Union address Wednesday night, President Obama spoke about a deficit of trust between the American people and political leaders. New Rasmussen Reports polling on the president’s speech shows just how deep that trust deficit has become.

The president in the speech declared that his administration has cut taxes for 95% of Americans. He even chided Republicans for not applauding on that point. However, just 21% of voters nationwide believe that taxes have been cut for 95% of Americans. Most (53%) say it has not happened, and 26% are not sure. Other polling shows that nearly half the nation’s voters expect their own taxes to go up during the Obama years.

The president also asserted that “after two years of recession, the economy is growing again.” Just 35% of voters believe that statement is true, while 50% say it is false.

Obama claimed that steps taken by his team are responsible for putting two million people to work “who would otherwise be unemployed.” Just 27% of voters say that statement is true. Fifty-one percent (51%) say it’s false.

Obama is now pimping his “jobs bill” with the same type of lies he earlier pimped his stimulus.  That said:

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 30% of voters nationwide believe the $787-billion economic stimulus plan has helped the economy. However, 38% believe that the stimulus plan has hurt the economy. This is the first time since the legislation passed that a plurality has held a negative view of its impact.

The number who believe that the stimulus plan has hurt the economy rose from 28% in September, to 31% in October, and 34% in November before jumping to 38% this month. The week after the president signed the bill, 34% said it would help the economy, while 32% said it would hurt.

The Political Class has a much different view than the rest of the county. Ninety percent (90%) of the Political Class believes the stimulus plan helped the economy and not a single Political Class respondent says it has hurt. (See more on the Political Class).

Kind of interesting.  I watched CNN and NBC after the speech, and I got the idea that Obama must have walked on water.

The political class wants more government and fewer liberties for citizens 100% of the time.

There’s an old adage: fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.

Don’t be ashamed that you were stupid.  Get it right now, and start being part of the solution.

It’s time for some hope and change regarding Obama.  Let’s hope that more Americans change their view of Obama and see him for the lying fraud he is.

Speigel Regards Obama And His Afghanistan Policy With Naked Contempt

December 2, 2009

This Der Speigel article says it all so well there’s really no point in doing much to comment further, other than to welcome Europeans to the growing “Obama is a colossal failure” camp.

Searching in Vain for the Obama Magic

By Gabor Steingart

President Barack Obama's Tuesday speech left a bad taste in many mouths.

Zoom
AFP

President Barack Obama’s Tuesday speech left a bad taste in many mouths.

Never before has a speech by President Barack Obama felt as false as his Tuesday address announcing America’s new strategy for Afghanistan. It seemed like a campaign speech combined with Bush rhetoric — and left both dreamers and realists feeling distraught.

One can hardly blame the West Point leadership. The academy commanders did their best to ensure that Commander-in-Chief Barack Obama’s speech would be well-received.

Just minutes before the president took the stage inside Eisenhower Hall, the gathered cadets were asked to respond “enthusiastically” to the speech. But it didn’t help: The soldiers’ reception was cool.

One didn’t have to be a cadet on Tuesday to feel a bit of nausea upon hearing Obama’s speech. It was the least truthful address that he has ever held. He spoke of responsibility, but almost every sentence smelled of party tactics. He demanded sacrifice, but he was unable to say what it was for exactly.

An additional 30,000 US soldiers are to march into Afghanistan — and then they will march right back out again. America is going to war — and from there it will continue ahead to peace. It was the speech of a Nobel War Prize laureate.

Just in Time for the Campaign

For each troop movement, Obama had a number to match. US strength in Afghanistan will be tripled relative to the Bush years, a fact that is sure to impress hawks in America. But just 18 months later, just in time for Obama’s re-election campaign, the horror of war is to end and the draw down will begin. The doves of peace will be let free.

The speech continued in that vein. It was as though Obama had taken one of his old campaign speeches and merged it with a text from the library of ex-President George W. Bush. Extremists kill in the name of Islam, he said, before adding that it is one of the “world’s great religions.” He promised that responsibility for the country’s security would soon be transferred to the government of President Hamid Karzai — a government which he said was “corrupt.” The Taliban is dangerous and growing stronger. But “America will have to show our strength in the way that we end wars,” he added.

It was a dizzying combination of surge and withdrawal, of marching to and fro. The fast pace was reminiscent of plays about the French revolution: Troops enter from the right to loud cannon fire and then they exit to the left. And at the end, the dead are left on stage.

Obama’s Magic No Longer Works

But in this case, the public was more disturbed than entertained. Indeed, one could see the phenomenon in a number of places in recent weeks: Obama’s magic no longer works. The allure of his words has grown weaker.

It is not he himself who has changed, but rather the benchmark used to evaluate him. For a president, the unit of measurement is real life. A leader is seen by citizens through the prism of their lives — their job, their household budget, where they live and suffer. And, in the case of the war on terror, where they sometimes die.

Political dreams and yearnings for the future belong elsewhere. That was where the political charmer Obama was able to successfully capture the imaginations of millions of voters. It is a place where campaigners — particularly those with a talent for oration — are fond of taking refuge. It is also where Obama set up his campaign headquarters, in an enormous tent called “Hope.”

In his speech on America’s new Afghanistan strategy, Obama tried to speak to both places. It was two speeches in one. That is why it felt so false. Both dreamers and realists were left feeling distraught.

The American president doesn’t need any opponents at the moment. He’s already got himself.

I hope you don’t feel lonely, Barry.  If it makes you feel any better, I’m your opponent, too.


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