For months I've tried to show why Obama is unfit to be president. I have recently focused on his "spread the wealth" socialist economic plan, his years in church listening to a hate-spewing pastor and his time at the Chicago Annenberg Challenge with William Ayers -- but my first and biggest concern with Obama has always been in the area of foreign policy. Barack Obama's foreign policy is typical among the left's "internationalist" wing -- those who see themselves as "citizens of the world", and who come to look at international cooperation as not simply a means but an end in itself. Obama has worked during the campaign to sharpen his edge and give the voters a sense that he will not hesitate to use force to protect America -- something any candidate in this day and age must say. But his inclinations are toward multilateralism, and he has said clearly that as president one of his first orders of business will be to bring "humility" to U.S. foreign policy -- principally by listening to the ideas and needs of other nations. My sense is that Barack Obama will return the U.S. to a "U.N./EU first" kind of foreign policy, where we are careful not to offend while trying to protect our interests both here and home and abroad. It won't work.
My concerns about Obama and foreign policy have been heightened (if that is possible) over the past few days by two events.
First, I was extremely troubled reading an interview given to the New Yorker's Nicholas Lehman by senior Obama military adviser Maj. Gen. Scott Gration (Ret.). This interview reinforces Obama's internationalism, but it does so in a very dangerous way:
"Gration was impatient with the idea that conflict is the natural state of the world, to be managed rather than resolved. “People are more alike than their cultures and religions,” he said. “When Obama talks about global citizens, it’s the same framework. You see, religion and culture - they’re the way people communicate their values. They want stability, order, education. This is just humanness. Then you add on your religion, your culture - that’s how you execute it.” His implication was that if we can get past the religious and cultural identities that serve as host organisms for conflict, and deal with people at the level of their humanity and their basic needs, then we can make real progress - especially if Obama personally holds an office that permits him to set the tone and lead the effort (emphasis added)."
The "level of their humanity"? What humanity is that? You mean the humanity that beheads prisoners and blows up buildings? Or straps explosives on the bodies of children in martyrdom operations? Oh, but of course, this is another extension of "the One" using his cult of personality to sit down with radical jihadists and find a "common ground". This is udoubtedly one of the more dangerous statements I have heard since 9/11. It is also typical of the left which does not wish to admit that radical Islam exists and is fundamentally an extension of the teaching of Islam itself.
Of course, we shouldn't be surprised by this, for it is prototypical idealism at work -- the notion that people's values are essentially the same, and that it is some external factor (poverty, oppression, imperialism) that makes people violent. Forget the fact that the perpetrators of 9/11 and the suicide bombers in London on 7/7/2005 were all educated, middle class Muslims who were indoctrinated with hatred. They were not poor or oppressed. They were, however, evil. This is something that the Obama team apparently can't get their minds around.
We should all be very afraid of this.
Second is the statement that Joe Biden made yesterday in Seattle before a liberal audience that he expects that in the first six months of an Obama administration, the U.S. will be attacked. He fears that our enemies will test the young president, much like the Soviets did Kennedy in 1961-1962. Here's what Biden said (courtesy of the The Weekly Standard):
"It will not be six months before the world tests Barack Obama like they did John Kennedy. The world is looking.... Watch, we’re gonna have an international crisis, a generated crisis, to test the mettle of this guy....
I can give you at least four or five scenarios from where it might originate… And he’s gonna need help. And the kind of help he’s gonna need is, he’s gonna need you - not financially to help him - we’re gonna need you to use your influence, your influence within the community, to stand with him. Because it’s not gonna be apparent initially, it’s not gonna be apparent that we’re right."
This is troubling on several levels. It seems to be an acknowledgement that Obama represents a weak, inexperienced leader who invites an attack -- and that from what Biden is saying that Obama is going to flub the response -- at least initially -- and will need support and understanding. This is not confidence inspiring coming from the #2 spot on the Democratic ticket.
But it is not the 1960s anymore -- and while the stakes during the Berlin blockade and the Cuban missile crisis could hardly have been higher, our enemy was operating within the same rationality model that we were. It is clear that Khruschev and the Soviets backed down from Cuba because they understood that they could not survive a nuclear confrontation with the U.S. In other words, rationality prevailed. We don't have such a luxury today -- when we face an enemy who seeks suicidal martyrdom in their evil deeds. There is no rational basis (at least Western-style) where deterrence works with Islamic jihadists.
So if we are attacked, the devastation could be enormous -- and our response will be less far less important than the initial attack against us.
Can we really afford this kind of on-the-job-training in the era of suicide bombing?