Wednesday, February 18, 2015

When You Lose Chris Matthews

Administration spokespeople are hunkered down trying to figure out new ways of saying that Islamist terrorism is not Islamist.

The same administration cannot bring itself to say that the Egyptian men who were beheaded by ISIS in Libya were Christians. And it refused to say that the victims of the terrorist attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris were Jewish.

If it only wanted to censor all negative remarks about Islam, that would be one thing. But, refusing to identify the victims of Islamist violence by their religious affiliation suggests that the administration cannot see the war for what it is.

In all fairness, one should not blame the confusion and the difficulty on state department spokeswomen Jen Psaki and Marie Harf. True, they have been sounding especially foolish of late, and this has caused a certain amount of piling on.

The truth is, they are not offering their own views. They are defending a policy that is frankly absurd, even indefensible. For my part I believe that their failures to articulate the policy clearly is a sign of intelligence. Only an imbecile would really believe that the Obama administration even has a policy in this area.

Admittedly, Marie Harf outdid herself when she claimed that you cannot kill your way to victory in a war. After all, what did she think war was about?

And she outdid herself again when she said that we can win wars by having a jobs creation program. More socialism, please.

Doesn’t Harf know that the aspiring European jihadis who are decamping for the Middle East live in countries that have numerous jobs programs, to say nothing of cradle to grave security?

The fact is, Psaki and Harf are doing an impossible job. Whatever nonsense Marie Harf said on television, other administration flacks said the same thing the next day.

The ladies were not speaking for themselves, so, let’s cut them some slack.

Nevertheless, when the administration refused to identify the Egyptian Christians who had been beheaded in Libya as Christians Chris Matthews went into a temperate rage.

When you’ve lost Chris Matthews….

For the MSNBC host it was one cowardly act too many. The liberal commentator, a man who has often defended the Obama administration and often criticized the Bush administration for its wars, has had enough.

Monday evening Matthews said this about the latest ISIS atrocity:

Can we do nothing? Can we just look at the pictures, ask what’s for supper? What’s on TV tonight? What’s the weather like tomorrow morning? And go on with our lives warding off the knowledge that these people are being killed in demonstration against us?

I know, we all know we need a plan. We need a route that takes us to a destroyed ISIS, because the alternative is too sick, too un-American, too un-human. We can’t see people killed like this in our face and simply flip to the sports page or the financial news or what’s at the movies or who’s going to win the Oscars and act like America, our country, is not being morally humiliated.

Because it is, with the lives of at least some of these people, who must, in their last minutes, have to be wondering if there’s any chance the people in the United States could be coming to their rescue. Because that’s how we were taught that we conduct ourselves. We don’t leave people behind.

Matthews was making a very important point.

There are many reasons why ISIS is broadcasting its brutality. Surely, it wishes to stigmatize Islam in Western eyes.

But as Matthews notes, thanks to the Obama administration’s handling of the situation, America is being “morally humiliated.”

ISIS terrorists have taken the full measure of Barack Obama and decided that he can be morally humiliated with impunity. Thus, they can elevate themselves in the estimation of many people around the world by showing that they are, in some sense, stronger than weak and decadent America.

ISIS is not going to invade America tomorrow. It is not, as Obama suggests, an existential threat.

And yet, it is severely damaging America’s national pride, and that is assuredly  a threat to America.

One notes, with some chagrin, that ISIS is not alone in working to exalt itself at the expense of American pride. Isn’t Vladimir Putin doing the same in the Ukraine, and isn’t his approval rating very, very high.

When ISIS kills their citizens, other leaders react with rage. Obama, however, remains calm and detached.

While the king of Jordan flies in a bombing mission against an ISIS stronghold, Obama prefers to play golf. Not that he has to fly the planes himself, but Obama should strongly condemn groups that behead Americans and make a show of extreme force.

It’s not about being cool and above it all. If a situation requires anger and fortitude and you cannot muster it, the world will see you as weak and ineffectual, lacking in pride.

It’s not that Obama is too smart to fight. He is too weak to assert himself and to assert the honor and pride of the United States. National pride matters. The national mood has a definite influence on your mood.

Like it or not, the mood is set at the top. If the nation’s leader does not feel pride in his country, others will feel their own pride draining out of them. For that they will justly be angry.

ISIS wants to show that Americans are decadent, and do not have the stomach for the fight. After all, Americans elected Barack Obama.

Under Obama, Matthews says, we now leave people behind… unless, of course they are deserters. In that case we trade them for Taliban commanders.

Matthews might be a bit late to the party, but he deserves considerable credit for seeing clearly what is happening on the world stage.


JP said...

"ISIS terrorists have taken the full measure of Barack Obama and decided that he can be morally humiliated with impunity. Thus, they can elevate themselves in the estimation of many people around the world by showing that they are, in some sense, stronger than weak and decadent America."

You are missing the point here.

They haven't taken the "full measure" of anything nor do they care about "morally humiliating" Obama.

They are a very well-functioning medieval Islamic millennial group who want to bring about the apocalypse.

They are answerable only to their own internally consistent delusions.

It's really not hard to understand what's actually going on here, but you have to be able to recognize this specific mode of human thought and action.

Anonymous said...

Isn't Matthews part of the racket that refuses to see black criminals as black? The perps are referred to as 'teens' and 'youth'.

And never mind that many victims are white.

Anonymous said...

"ISIS is not going to invade America tomorrow. It is not, as Obama suggests, an existential threat.
And yet, it is severely damaging America’s national pride, and that is assuredly a threat to America."

But ISIS is also giving what neocons want. They are destabilizing Shia powers in the Middle East.

So, US, Saudis, and Israel have all been covertly aiding and abetting 'rebel fighters'.

'Make barbarians fight barbarians.'

Anonymous said...

Obama never cared about American jobs. Now his Administration cares about jobs and economic opportunity for the Middle East? Maybe he can do for them what he did for us: pass "free" healthcare instead of focusing on jobs. That's how to create a "robust recovery."

It is amazing what this administration chooses to talk and not talk about. We found out yesterday that Holder is choosing to focus on what Fox News is talking about. More smoke and mirrors.

Well, at least we know what President Valerie Jarrett thinks of all this. Because what Valerie says is what happens.

Chris Matthews........... better late than never. I guess the chill up his leg has passed.

Sam L. said...

Perhaps The Won thinks Hillary! will be the next Dem pick for President and so loathes and despises her that he thinks doing this will either prevent her from becoming so or dig a whole so big she can't get out of it if she's elected. Just a thought.

Surely ISIS has no fear of The Won. His lassitude can do and will do nothing to diminish their faith in themselves as the Bad-Ass Butchers Of The Levant (and elsewhere, to be announced).

Jim Sweeney said...

This is simple.

a. Hussein Obama is a traitor.

b. He hates America and its traditional values.

c. His spouse is the same.

d. They also hate white people.

I do not hate him or her. I despise them though.

Dennis said...

Jim Sweeney,

There would have been a time when I would have argued that you are wrong and would have chalked this up to Obama's incompetence. I am not so sure anymore given Obama and his wife's actions over the last 6 years. Though I still believe much of the world does look at Obama as a clown whereas many of us would equate him to "Chucky" with the same desire to destroy and the same narcissism, lack of feeling to other people and arrogance involved .
I would have also argued that most Muslims think Islam is a peaceful religion and that they are truly representative of that religion. I am not so sure anymore and, given the polls taken around the world, am beginning to believe that ISIS, et al are the one's who truly represent Islam based on the Koran. The rest are like our Sunday go to church crowd who only pay homage to their religion on that day and only loosely represent it if at al. Much the same manner as many Jewish people think about the Torah only when it is expedient or useful.
Between Obama, Holder, Jarrett and a significant number of acolytes to the various Leftist causes there is little respect for anyone outside that small core of true believers.

Sam L. said...

A commenter on Rush,Thursday, called Obama an Islamic Terrorism Denier.