Among the things Americans—at least those willing to pay attention and accept actual evidence—have learned about Barack Obama is the one certain way to tell when he is lying is when his lips are moving. He also blames everyone else for his failings. He has only recently stopped–mostly—blaming George W. Bush for every real and imagined debacle. During the last few months of his presidency, Mr. Obama is desperate to preserve any facet of his legacy (go here to see Victor Davis Hanson’s take on that). In that pursuit, Mr. Obama is reaching new depths of deception, as Townhall.com reports:
In January 2014 President Obama referred to ISIS, one of the most vicious terror armies to ever exist, of being a “JV team.”
‘The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a JV team [ISIS] puts on Lakers uniforms, that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant,’ Obama told the New Yorker at the time.
After that comment the group marched from Syria to Iraq, taking large swaths of territory, pillaging and raping along the way and slaughtering thousands.
Now with just a month left in his presidency, President Obama is saying he was surprised by the capability of ISIS to control major parts of the region, becoming a world wide threat.
‘The ability of ISIL to not just mass inside of Syria, but then to initiate major land offensives that took Mosul, for example, that was not on my intelligence radar screen,’ Obama told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria in an interview airing Wednesday night.
A return to reality tells us George W. Bush left Mr. Obama a secure Iraq, but Mr. Obama failed to establish a status of forces agreement, pulled all out forces out and declared victory. He and Vice President Biden later claimed Iraq was one of their administration’s greatest accomplishments, even as Iraq degenerated into chaos. Among the major problems with this sort of juvenile thinking is in such matters, the enemy always has a vote. One can pull out and declare victory all they please, but if the enemy doesn’t feel beaten and is determined to fight on, all that has happened is giving the enemy a free hand. Our absence in Iraq at a particularly dangerous and decisive time resulted in innumerable deaths and disaster for the region and the world. Mr. Obama was warned, but ignored those warnings for the most trivial and base political purposes, and for his self-aggrandizement.
It was Fareed Zakaria of CNN to whom President Obama made his remarkable assertion. Note CNN’s more accepting, uncritical coverage:
ISIS’ march across Iraq and Syria — a campaign that’s forced President Barack Obama to return small numbers of US troops to the region, even after touting an end to the decade-long ground offensives there — came as a surprise to US intelligence, the President told CNN in a new special report. [skip]
‘The ability of ISIL to not just mass inside of Syria, but then to initiate major land offensives that took Mosul, for example, that was not on my intelligence radar screen,’ Obama told Zakaria, using the administration’s term for the Islamic State terror group. [skip]
The city of Aleppo has become a nightmare for the tens of thousands of Syrians still living there, short on food and medical supplies as cold winter weather sets in. The conflict has led to hundreds of thousands of deaths, spurred a destabilizing refugee crisis in Europe, and led to the rise of a terror group that Obama admits he didn’t see coming.
It’s a legacy he says haunts him, but as he explains to Zakaria in Wednesday’s special, the decisions he did make were the best he could muster in a country with no good choices.
Avoiding a large scale ground conflict in Syria ‘is the smartest decision from a menu of bad options that were available to us,’ he told Zakaria …
‘We, in fact, positioned our military to be able to strike Assad if he did not give up his chemical weapons,’ Obama told Zakaria. ‘And the fact is, he got rid of his chemical weapons in an unprecedented way.
Except those he kept and has been using since.
But the civil war continued to rage, and ISIS began taking ground. It established Raqqa, in northern Syria, as its capital. And it began moving into Iraq, including in cities with names well-known to Americans — Mosul, Fallujah, Ramadi, the cites of key battles during the Iraq War. [skip]
In a region with few good choices, he says there’s little any president could have devised that would have made much of a difference.
‘Have we been flawless in the execution of what is a complicated policy in the region? Absolutely not. I think flawless is not available when it comes to foreign policy or the presidency, at least with mere mortals like me at the helm,’ he told Zakaria. ‘But have we made, I think, the best decisions that were available to us, at each stage? The answer is yes.
One might be forgiven for thinking Mr. Obama sees himself as a mere mortal.
Zakaria, having access to specific information about every contention made by Mr. Obama, didn’t confront him on obvious falsehoods. The President of the United States claims his intelligence assets did not inform him about ISIS and other critical threats, and CNN blindly accepted it.
It’s well known that Mr. Obama ignores 60% or more of his daily intelligence briefings. This is the President’s opportunity to be briefed by top intelligence officials and to ask questions only they can answer, yet he foregoes that opportunity, claiming instead he reads summaries. Zakaria was oblivious.
One might also be forgiven for thinking Mr. Obama’s reason for missing his morning intelligence briefings has far more to do with his utter lack of a work ethic than a brilliant intellect not requiring the input of professionals. As I noted in 2014, Mr. Obama’s official schedule reveals that on the days when he bothers to come to work, he virtually never drops by the office earlier than 0930. But a president has to have priorities. What’s more important? American national security, or an extra hour or two of sleep?
It’s also well known that Mr. Obama has forced his subordinates to cook the intelligence books so he doesn’t hear any inconvenient facts, anything that would contradict the progressive narrative that ISIS is on the run and Mr. Obama is a fearsome anti-terror warrior. The American Thinker explains:
Fifty intelligence analysts at CENTCOM headquarters are being retaliated against for exposing a scandal involving altered intelligence reports about ISIS that put a far more optimistic spin on military progress against the terrorists than the analysts originally reported. The reports were changed by high-ranking officers at CENTCOM and were used by the Obama administration to “prove” that we are winning the battle against Islamic State.
Some analysts have lost their jobs, and higher-ups at CENTCOM have been looking at which analysts may have talked to the media or the Pentagon inspector general who is investigating the allegations.
Zakaria’s memory apparently failed him in this as well. But what about high-ranking military officers? Didn’t they tell Mr. Obama about what was happening? They tried, and paid for it, as Investor’s Business Daily reports:
Yet what has happened to our officer corps since President Obama took office is viewed in many quarters as unprecedented, baffling and even harmful to our national security posture. We have commented on some of the higher profile cases, such as Gen. Carter Ham. He was relieved as head of U.S. Africa Command after only a year and a half because he disagreed with orders not to mount a rescue mission in response to the Sept. 11, 2012, attack in Benghazi.
Rear Adm. Chuck Gaouette, commander of the John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group, was relieved in October 2012 for disobeying orders when he sent his group on Sept. 11 to ‘assist and provide intelligence for’ military forces ordered into action by Gen. Ham.
Other removals include the sacking of two nuclear commanders in a single week — Maj. Gen. Michael Carey, head of the 20th Air Force, responsible for the three wings that maintain control of the 450 intercontinental ballistic missiles, and Vice Adm. Tim Giardina, the No. 2 officer at U.S. Strategic Command.
From Breitbart.com’s Facebook page comes a list of at least 197 officers that have been relieved of duty by President Obama for a laundry list of reasons and sometimes with no reason given. Stated grounds range from ‘leaving blast doors on nukes open’ to ‘loss of confidence in command ability’ to ‘mishandling of funds’ to ‘inappropriate relationships’ to ‘gambling with counterfeit chips’ to ‘inappropriate behavior’ to ‘low morale in troops commanded.’
Nine senior commanding generals have been fired by the Obama administration this year, leading to speculation by active and retired members of the military that a purge of its commanders is under way.
The Commander In Chief has the power to reassign or dismiss officers who fail to properly perform their duties, however, any reasonable review of the facts indicates Mr. Obama has fired real warriors who tell him the truth, and promoted those willing to enthusiastically toe the party line, or at least, to remain silent.
Retired U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Paul Vallely, an outspoken critic of the Obama administration, notes how the White House fails to take action or investigate its own officials but finds it easy to fire military commanders ‘who have given their lives for their country.’ Vallely thinks he knows why this purge is happening.
‘Obama will not purge a civilian or political appointee because they have bought into Obama’s ideology,’ Vallely said.’The White House protects their own. That’s why they stalled on the investigation into Fast and Furious, Benghazi and ObamaCare. He’s intentionally weakening and gutting our military, Pentagon and reducing us as a superpower, and anyone in the ranks who disagrees or speaks out is being purged.
It seems Mr. Obama’s lack of pertinent information about ISIS, and other essential national security matters, is not the result of negligence or incompetence by our military and/or intelligence professionals, but of his determination to portray himself as a historic peacemaker and brilliant geopolitical player, reality be damned. ISIS flourished, and the Middle East is in chaos, not because Mr. Obama was uninformed, but because he chose to live in and act upon the world as he preferred it to be rather than as it is. This is the danger of governing by “messaging,” by thinking the unquestionable failure of progressive policy isn’t actually failure, but merely a matter of tweaking the narrative so everyone will uncritically accept it. Truth and reality don’t matter; the proper messaging resolves all doubt.
Mr. Obama is also certainly doing his best to live up to his Nobel Peace Prize, awarded immediately after he assumed office. Even Mr. Obama admitted he didn’t deserve it, which did not prevent him from accepting it and insulting the Norwegian government at the same time. Mr. Obama has always excelled at insulting allies. Mr. Obama had accomplished nothing on the world stage when he was given the prize. Members of the Nobel Committee, and its Secretary, were to eventually admit they made a mistake. They gave Obama the Prize for being Barack Obama, because they believed his rhetoric about himself and expected him to bring peace to the world, eventually, maybe…
Awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to US President Barack Obama in 2009 failed to achieve what the committee hoped it would, its ex-secretary has said.
“Geir Lundestad told the AP news agency that the committee hoped the award would strengthen Mr. Obama.
Instead, the decision was met with criticism in the US. Many argued he had not had any impact worthy of the award.
Mr Lundestad, writing in his memoir, Secretary of Peace, said even Mr Obama himself had been surprised.
‘No Nobel Peace Prize ever elicited more attention than the 2009 prize to Barack Obama,’ Mr Lundestad writes.
‘Even many of Obama’s supporters believed that the prize was a mistake,’ he says. ‘In that sense the committee didn’t achieve what it had hoped for.
Unfortunately, in the real world, unfulfilled hopes of this kind ruin nations and cost lives. The actual JV team has always been Mr. Obama’s, enabled by a compliant and complicit media. The world has paid the price for hope and change, and Donald Trump has a truly Herculean task ahead of him, with half the nation, half the Congress, and virtually all of the media opposing him before his first day in office.
And Mr. Obama still has two months of destruction left…