Someone wrote somewhere recently – I can’t remember where – that there are only two Western democracies left still willing to fight to defend themselves: The United States and Great Britain.
With the world teaming with enemies who want to destroy the West, this is a frightening thought. And after President Obama’s speech last night, in which he declared an end to combat operations in Iraq, our enemies can be reassured that the number willing to use military power against them is headed toward zero.
The president made it very clear to those listening closely – and I assure you those who mean us harm were listening closely – that he has no stomach for a fight and will engage America only in the most urgent of situations, if even then.
Does this lamentation sound like a man who will, except under the most extreme circumstances, wage war?
The United States has paid a huge price to put the future of Iraq in the hands of its people. We have sent our young men and women to make enormous sacrifices in Iraq, and spent vast resources abroad at a time of tight budgets at home.
The president couldn’t resist using remarks about the drawdown in Iraq to make crystal clear that we’re getting out of Afghanistan too.
The pace of our troop reductions will be determined by conditions on the ground, and our support for Afghanistan will endure. But make no mistake: This transition will begin — because open-ended war serves neither our interests nor the Afghan people’s.
Obama managed to drop into his speech about Iraq a whole section about his domestic agenda, right down to education reform and the like. He suggested that making the United States strong through, you know, making electric vehicles, will help us fight al Qaeda, Ahmadinejad, and other really bad guys.
This is not serious thinking. While we of course must improve our economy, the way to fight bad guys is to kill them.
When we are departing a fight is the most dangerous moment of all. It’s then that we must project that we are doing so from a position of strength, that we are still willing to use our muscle if someone needs a pounding. Instead, Obama weeps that we’ve “spent vast resources abroad at a time of tight budgets at home.”
His body posture is clear to the enemy. It says: “Yikes! Get me outta here and leave me alone so I can get to work putting solar panels on American homes!”
It’s a very dangerous message and one that will ensure we have even more problems overseas. Weakness invites war. Peace is achieved through strength – military strength.