BOY, THAT WAS WEIRD – AT 8:32 A.M. ET: Did you see Obama's campaign speech from Afghanistan last night? Strange, wasn't it? Obama, under the great drama of secrecy, flies to the war-torn country to sign a minor agreement and give a speech that could have been given at a chicken lunch in Des Moines.
As usual, a Brit provides the deadliest insight into the president's non-event. Conservative cleric Peter Mullen, one of two Mullens to make news today, has it right in London's Telegraph:
Barack Obama has told the citizens of the US that a decade “under the dark cloud of war" is almost over and that his administration is on course to destroy al-Qaeda. In a massively hyped speech – well, it is election year over there – the President told the American people that the US combat role in Afghanistan was now also winding down, just as it already has in Iraq.
Speaking from a military airbase in Afghanistan on the anniversary of Osama bin Laden’s death, he insisted: "We can see the light of a new day on the horizon."
This is pure cloud cuckoo land oratory. “The light of a new day” is the headlights of the next suicide bomber’s approaching car. With devastating naivete the US government has announced the date of its planned withdrawal from Afghanistan – so the Taliban will simply lie low until that date and then re-emerge to take over whatever might be remaining of Karzai’s corrupt and failed state.
Obama’s speech gave the impression that he believes victory in Afghanistan – which he has no chance of achieving in any case – represents victory over al-Qaeda. This is mere folly. Al-Q-aeda are as ubiquitous as the common cold virus. They are in Yemen, Syria, Somalia, Sudan and, by their proxies, in Nigeria where they are proving to be particularly barbaric. The Americans show no signs of defeating the terrorist organization in any of those places.
Within hours of Obama’s trip to Afghanistan, the Taliban left a calling-card reminder that they had been listening attentively to the President’s speech by exploding a car bomb in Kabul where the leader of the US had been just hours earlier..
COMMENT: That says it. The president's speech was farcical, a throwback to Chamberlain bringing the British people "peace in our time" on his return from Munich. All Obama needed was the umbrella...but he's way too cool to carry an umbrella.
I thought the speech should have ended with a rousing rendition of "There's No Business Like Show Business," but the Marine Band had more important things to do.
May 2, 2012