Twas the first night of Chanukah, the Jewish festival of lights, and President Obama thought that it was just the right time to address the nation about the virtues of a religion many of whose practitioners despise and want to kill Jews.
The optics were chilling.
Obviously, the president did not want to be doing what he was doing. He would have much preferred to be chumming it up with his Hollywood pals at the Kennedy Center. One suspects that he resented the fact that the speech forced him to be late for the ceremonies.
But, events in San Bernardino, coupled with his mealy-mouthed response to the terrorist massacre in Paris forced his hand. His political allies were gnashing their teeth, so Obama was forced to take one for the team. He stood behind a podium and recited his lines, with neither conviction nor courage. It’s almost as though the famous rhetorician has morphed into a master of empty rhetoric.
Having assured the nation a mere few weeks ago that no one was at any risk for an attack by ISIS Obama was caught flat-footed when a couple of ISIS sympathizers and Jew haters massacred fourteen of their co-workers at a Christmas party in California. For now, the president assured us, we have no evidence that the killers had been ordered to do what they did by the powers-that-be in Raqqa, but still, they did pledge allegiance to ISIS and must have received money from somewhere.
Strictly speaking, we do not know who paid these terrorists, but the president did manage to manifest his own special fear of Islam by never declaring that the terrorists were acting in the name of Islam.
Worse yet, the president’s remarks were at stark variance from the analysis provided by his own intelligence services. But, facts be damned, President Obama declared that he did have a strategy and that it was working.
For the most current intelligence assessment of ISIS, read the report filed by Kimberly Dozier:
A new U.S. intelligence report on ISIS, commissioned by the White House, predicts that the self-proclaimed Islamic State will spread worldwide and grow in numbers, unless it suffers a significant loss of territory on the battlefield in Iraq and Syria, U.S. officials told The Daily Beast.
The report stands in stark contrast to earlier White House assurances that ISIS had been “contained” in Iraq and Syria. And it is already spurring changes in how the U.S. grapples with ISIS, these officials said.
It’s also a tacit admission that coalition efforts so far—dropping thousands of bombs and deploying 3,500 U.S. troops as well as other coalition trainers—have been outpaced by ISIS’s ability to expand and attract new followers, even as the yearlong coalition air campaign has helped local forces drive ISIS out of parts of Iraq and Syria.
So, Obama reviewed this report and concluded that we were winning. He must know that his flunkies believe that his is the word of God—which one, we do not know—and that if he says it, it must be true. The other possibility is that he believes that he needs merely to utter the magic words that we are winning and we will be winning. Reality would never have the nerve to contradict his declamations.
Obama also made it seem as though American air power had degraded ISIS. He suggested that France, Great Britain and Germany were following the American lead in the war against ISIS. Everyone knows that this is nonsense, but Obama probably believes it anyway.
To defend his strategy, Obama set up an alternative straw man strategy. He uses this rhetorical ploy often enough. It must be working, or else he would not continue to use it. Here, he suggested that the alternative to his strategy was to invade and occupy Iraq and Syria. Since his pusillanimous withdrawal from Iraq and his inability to negotiate an agreement whereby he could keep thousands of American troops in the nation opened the region to ISIS, he declared that he did not want to send in troops because that was what ISIS wanted.
[For the record, Obama and his flunkies are the only people in the world who call ISIS … ISIL. Why does he insist on saying that the Islamic state exists, not in Iraq and Syria, but in the Levant? One reason might be that the Levant comprises the territory now knows as Israel. Just a thought.]
There are many alternatives to the Obama strategy, but the president believes that the only options are his or a calamitous mistake. Obama must imagine that his followers will believe anything he says.
Where Freud worried about what women want, Obama is apparently designing his policy to ensure that we do not do what ISIS wants.
Note Obama’s phrasing:
We should not be drawn once more into a long and costly ground war in Iraq or Syria. That’s what groups like ISIL want.
We cannot turn against one another by letting this fight be defined as a war between America and Islam. That, too, is what groups like ISIL want.
It’s our responsibility to reject proposals that Muslim Americans should somehow be treated differently. Because when we travel down that road, we lose. That kind of divisiveness, that betrayal of our values plays into the hands of groups like ISIL.
Since no one is proposing a ground war anyway, Obama’s argument is a straw man. One suspects that he refuses to allow our bombs to level their cities or, until recently, disrupt their oil trafficking, because ISIS wants us to level their cities and disrupt their oil trafficking. He believes that the souls of the dead terrorists will rise up from the rubble and use their loss as a great recruiting tool.
Were we to take the question seriously, we know that ISIS really wants the West to respect Islam. It wants the West to be afraid of Islam. It wants Islam to be seen as so powerful that prophet cannot be slandered with impunity. On that score Obama is giving ISIS exactly what it wants.
Or, as Obama said in Cairo in 2009:
The future does not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.
The fact is, Obama is afraid to slander Islam. He is afraid to blaspheme the prophet of Islam. And he is afraid to see that Islam is the problem. If anyone knew the correct meaning of the word Islamophobia, he would know that the term refers to fear, not hatred. On that he is leading the world.
As for the Muslim terrorists, we are not talking about a psychotic who open fire at a clinic or a school or a movie theatre. We are talking about an international death cult-- as the president correctly called it-- that has arisen out of one and only one religion. If you cannot explain why hundreds of millions of Muslims sympathize with ISIS and with Islamist terrorism, why they want to live in under Shariah law in a caliphate and want Israel eradicated, then you are blowing smoke.
Obama was correct to say that Muslims around the world should root out Islamist terrorists. And yet, one suspects that the terrorist message resonates too well with too many Muslims for this to happen easily and without carnage.
More importantly, perhaps, it is incumbent on Muslims in the West to assimilate, to become part of their local cultures, to renounce Shariah law and to embrace Western customs and laws. A religion whose non-terrorists believe in the subjugation and suppression of women, who believe in wife beating, who believe in honor killing, who stone adulterers, who execute homosexuals and who believe that their religion can only be proselytized by holy wars has a certain affinity with the horrors of ISIS.
One fears that it will never happen if Muslims have defenders in the person of the president of the United States. You can say all you want about how well or poorly Muslims are treated in America—and there has been no outbreak of anti-Muslim violence in America, even after 9/11—but you should not pretend that the actions of ISIS and its hundreds of millions of followers and sympathizers have nothing to do with Islam. If a couple of random Muslims living in California can, upon becoming more religious, turn into bloodthirsty terrorists, there is clearly something wrong with the religion.
I will repeat a point I have made a couple of times before. A president who is worried about the possibility that someone will speak blasphemy against the prophet of Islam is systematically ignoring the hate being preached at mosques around America and the world. Are all of those hate preachers not true Muslims either?
Listening to Obama you would think that the real problem was people speaking ill of Muslims. You would think that if only people stopped thinking bad thoughts about Islam, the whole problem would go away. It's like saying that the problem in the Middle East is not Islamic terrorism, but the existence of the state of Israel.
One hastens to mention, if only in passing, that last night Obama also called for stricter gun control. Naturally, when terrorists live in a state that has the strict gun control laws that Obama favors, when they build pipe bombs in their living room, the only conclusion you can draw is that we need more gun control laws. Everyone but Obama knows, as we saw in Paris, that the world’s strictest gun control laws do not prevent terrorists from finding all the weapons they want.
In this Obama was obviously playing the politics card and trying to blame Republicans for the carnage. Obama tends to save his fire for his true enemy, Republicans and people with guns.
It’s becoming so empty that no one is paying attention any more. But, even without knowing anything about Freud, you can figure out that guns have a special affinity with a certain sexual organ, one that most feminists lack. Thus, no war against Islam, but a war against the patriarchy, against those sick and perverted beings called men.
But, the news is not all bad. From now on our combat units, the ones we are not going to send into battle, will be coed. If that does not strike fear in the souls of all incipient terrorists, I don’t know what will.