Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Peace through Strength? Not on Obama's Watch

Peace through Strength? Not on Obama’s Watch
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
September 12, 2012

Continuing its weak and embarrassing dogma of apology and supplication, the Obama administration has once again proven feckless in its ability to properly handle a crisis – this time a foreign policy crisis that saw two embassies attacked and four Americans murdered, including one ambassador.

And yet, while bereft of any cogent demonstration of strength or backbone, it was Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney who was assailed by the so-called mainstream media for being too quick to condemn and criticize.

A little seen video, with no link to the American government, containing ridicule of Islam’s prophet Mohammad was the impetus to the violence and murders that occurred in Egypt and Libya.

That the carnage took place on September 11 is certainly no coincidence – adding to the angst of the commemoration of the most horrific day of terror on American soil in 2001 when the World Trade Center twin towers were destroyed, the Pentagon in Arlington, VA attacked, and a plane diverted from Washington to crash in a field in Shanksville, PA, where roughly 3,000 innocents were murdered. Yet, Obama called the attacks “shocking.”

While the mocking of any legitimate religious figure is inappropriate and distasteful, there is still a little something called the First Amendment to the United States Constitution providing that: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press…” This amendment was not defended or supported by the Obama administration in the language used by the American embassy in Cairo.

The initial statement from the embassy condemned “the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims, as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions.”

As violence erupted at the American embassy in Cairo, radical Muslims tore down, shredded and burned the American flag, replacing it with the black banner representing Muslim extremism. This included chants of “Obama, we are here to sacrifice for Osama.” This was followed by statements from the embassy supporting the previous call to not offend the religious sensibilities of Muslims, all the while; Muslims are attacking the American embassy.

Over in Benghazi, Libya, the American embassy was also invaded by radical Muslims who murdered US Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens, 52, a native of California and a 20-plus year Foreign Service veteran, along with three other Americans.

While the administration continued its cow-towing to the attacking and murdering Muslims, GOP nominee Romney rightfully criticized Obama’s weakness and condemned the attacks on the embassy as well as the murders of Ambassador Stevens and the other three Americans.

Romney exhibited strength and presidential acumen in his condemnation of the attacks on the two embassies, the murder of four American citizens, and the fact that embassy security is the responsibility of the host country, who clearly failed to do their jobs.

To be fair, Obama absolutely condemned the attacks and declared his desire to work with the Libyan government to bring the killers to justice. That’s a nice idea, Mr. Obama, but what government? Libya, since the ousting of Moammar Gaddafi, has been a virtual anarchist state.

Making matters worse was after the initial embassy statement, the Obama administration tried to disavow itself from the apology/condemnation of free speech rights, and then hours later, the State Department supported those very words.

Instead of condemning the Obama administration, the media went after Romney during his comments for jumping the gun in his condemnation of Obama for his continued weakness and capitulation to enemies of the American people.

Romney expressed condolences to the Stevens’ family as well as the families of the other murdered diplomats. After calling the attacks “disgraceful, outrageous and disgusting,” Romney maintained his criticism of Obama.

“I think it is a terrible course for America to issue an apology for our values. An apology for America’s values is never the right course,” said Romney, adding that Obama’s foreign policy has been a “hit-or-miss approach” lacking consistency.

Romney continued by mentioning the three “fundamental branches” of his foreign policy: confidence in the cause with no apologies for American values; clarity in the purpose; and resolve in the might of the United States – that hopefully it is needed rarely, but when it is necessary, to be swift and use overwhelming force in the clarity of the mission.

The Obama administration more and more resembles that of the failed term of Jimmy Carter – weak economy, high unemployment and a lack of respect abroad. This, sadly, is reminiscent of the Iranian hostage crisis which put the final nail into the coffin of the Carter reelection bid in 1980.

It was no accident that on the day Ronald Reagan was inaugurated those very hostages were on their way home. Peace through strength was the Reagan mantra, and it worked. It restored America’s rightful place in the global community, brought confidence back home to American citizens and began to right the ship of state.

Mitt Romney may not be Ronald Reagan, but he certainly exhibited Reagan-esque qualities that will help turn around a floundering economy, restore confidence in the business community and lead through strength on the foreign stage.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

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