What If It Had Been George?

Bill Neinast


Impeach him!  File an impeachment resolution immediately.

This headline will not appear in any news media for the next 90 days.  Imagine, though, what would be all over the media if George W. Bush or any Republican had been president when the tragedy of Benghazi occurred.

The only person vilified as the Benghazi cover up was developing was Mitt Romney.  He was criticized long and loudly for disagreeing with the first words from the Obama administration about the events unfolding in the Mid East. 

Our embassy in Egypt issued an apology for the U.S. allowing a short video critical of Muhammad to be aired and indicated that was the reason for the demonstrations and attacks on U.S. property throughout the region.

Romney thought that official statement should have been a condemnation of the terrorist attacks rather than an apology.  The media jumped all over that observation and repeated President Obama’s criticism that Romney had acted precipitously without knowing the facts.

For days thereafter the media drum beat was that Romney was not of presidential material because he acted on impulse rather than fact.  The unfolding story that his assessment was correct and that the Obama Administration was lying and covering up the facts that the Benghazi event was a planned, coordinated attack by al Qaeda rarely saw the light of day except on FOX News.

The Administration has finally been pushed into a corner.  It is now admitting that Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed by terrorists.  The media, however, is now bemoaning a belief that some are politicizing their deaths rather than honoring their service.

This approach is to avoid public discussions during the critical final 30 days of the presidential election debates that U.S. interests were attacked by al Qaeda on Obama’s watch and that he ignored warnings that an attack was imminent.

To do that, the class warrior bumper stickers emblazoned with “bin Laden dead but GM alive” would have to be changed to “bin Laden dead but al Qaeda alive.”

This raises issues that have seen little light during the campaign.  Nearly all the campaign rhetoric has been about jobs, the deficit, and the local economy generally.

This is because domestic issues affect all households in the U.S. and the effects of the Obama presidency have been detrimental to many of those households.

Conversely, foreign affairs is of little interest to the average American.  The news may get their attention for a moment if it covers the continuing war casualties in Afghanistan, the changes of government in Egypt and Libya, the violence and refugee problem in Syria, and Iran’s race for nuclear weapons. 

Of those, only Afghanistan and Iran seem to raise even a semblance of widespread interest.

By allowing this subject to languish, the Romney campaign is forfeiting a golden opportunity.  The Obama foreign policy should be as large an issue as his domestic policy.  Both have been spectacular failures.

Nothing more needs to be written about the jobs and deficit shambles.  The absence of any definitive foreign policy, however, should be among the most often repeated reasons for an Obama defeat.

For the first time since the U.S. abandoned the “fortress America” mantra, the country is no longer considered the world’s leader.  The new mantra is “leading from behind,” which grew out of our bringing up the rear in the toppling of Libya’s Gadaffi.

Now we are wringing our hands in worry about what the Muslim Brotherhood is going to do after we helped usher them into power in Egypt and are twiddling our thumbs while thousands are being killed in the attempt to dethrone Assad in Syria.

We could not tolerate such slaughter in Egypt.  So are we tolerating it in Syria because this is election season? 

Also, are we urgently begging Israel not to get too aggressive with the country that is threatening to destroy it because we go to the polls in just a few weeks?

The current occupant of the White House bows to foreign potentates and has turned Teddy Roosevelt’s philosophy to "speak softly, and carry a big stick" on its head.  His philosophy is to speak softly and do not carry a weapon of any kind.

So here’s the perspective.

President Obama’s domestic and foreign policies and actions are disasters.  The public is generally aware of the domestic failures but pay little or no attention to his foreign affairs debacles.

Allowing the United States to be relegated to the second string bench on the field of foreign affairs is making it even more difficult to get the domestic house in order.

Are American voters sophisticated enough to understand this and do something about it?

Let’s hope so.


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