July 23, 2015 Print
“To judge from the history of mankind, we shall be compelled to conclude that the fiery and destructive passions of war reign in the human breast with much more powerful sway than the mild and beneficent sentiments of peace; and that to model our political systems upon speculations of lasting tranquillity would be to calculate on the weaker springs of human character.” —Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 34 — 1788
TOP RIGHT HOOKS
Continuing Executive Advance on Immigration
The Obama administration continues its blitzkrieg on executive immigration reform. Sure, there’s that pocket of resistance, that suit brought by 26 states, but that’s not stopping Obama. “[T]he 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals guidelines remain in place,” Obama said in a White House statement. “There are also other important immigration executive actions that continue to move forward.” He goes onto list 11 ways he’s continuing to tweak the nation’s immigration enforcement, and the statement finishes by repeating the tired mantra that only Congress can fix immigration by passing “bipartisan, comprehensive immigration reform.” Why doesn’t Obama just ask for a unicorn? He really doesn’t want reform; that’s why he’s so thoroughly poisoned the well. His department of Homeland Security proposed a rule that would expand the types of people who could stay in U.S. while waiting for legal status. Such a policy would undermine legal immigration, remove the penalties for illegal immigration and encourage fraud, says the Center for Immigration Studies. Obama’s executive actions come at a time when Congress is tackling some immigration reform by considering a bill that would curb sanctuary cities after that policy led to the death of Kathryn Steinle. Despite Congress’ unique role in deciding the nation’s immigration policies, a group of mayors from some of the nation’s biggest cities wrote to Congress supporting sanctuary city policies by making a home-rule argument — a bunch of leftists supporting the status quo, including how immigration is being handled politically.
Obama Stands by Planned Parenthood
Most Americans are some combination of outraged and sickened at the revelations that Planned Parenthood is selling babies’ body parts after successful abortions. Its doctors are on record talking about how to avoid crushing valuable organs and using a “less crunchy technique” in order to harvest organs while sipping wine and joking about wanting a Lamborghini. A thorough investigation and an end to taxpayer funding of the nation’s largest abortion mill is in order. So what does Barack Obama think? His press secretary, Josh Earnest, backed Planned Parenthood. “I haven’t spoken to the president about the actual videos. I have read the reports and I’m confident that he has, too, raising significant concerns about the way in which those videos were selectively edited to distort the — not just the words of the individual speaking but also the position of Planned Parenthood.” Earnest went on to offer some free PR for Planned Parenthood’s “highest ethical standards.” Perhaps he misheard — they’re selling baby parts. How is that remotely ethical? Unsurprisingly, Obama is more upset about the organization taking the videos than the abortionists selling baby livers. This is a man, after all, who has no problem with partial-birth abortion, and who wants unfettered access to abortion and abortion-inducing birth-control for all women — even mandating Catholic nuns carry insurance that covers it. So forgive us if we’re skeptical when Attorney General Loretta Lynch says the Justice Department is “going to review all the information and determine what steps, if any, to take at the appropriate time.” Note: That’s “what steps, if any.” Besides, perhaps she means DOJ will investigate the group taking the videos…
More Details Emerge From Chattanooga
Details continue to come out about the terrorist attack in Chattanooga last week. One Navy officer and a Marine returned fire when a jihadi rammed through the gate and started shooting. According to Navy Times, “Lt. Cmdr. Timothy White, the support center’s commanding officer, used his personal firearm to engage” the assailant. Likewise, one of the slain Marines reportedly had a personal handgun that he used to return fire. But it wasn’t only those with guns who acted with bravery. According to reports, some of the fallen Marines essentially sacrificed themselves by drawing fire away from a larger group of Marines. “This could have been a lot worse,” an anonymous official said. “It could have been a horrible, horrible massacre — so much worse.”
It was bad enough. Remember the fallen: Sgt. Carson A. Holmquist, Staff Sgt. David A. Wyatt, Gunnery Sgt. Thomas J. Sullivan, Lance Cpl. Squire K. Wells, and Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Randall Smith.
Finally, Ed Reinhold, the FBI’s special agent in charge in Knoxville, declared during a Wednesday news conference that the perpetrator was a “homegrown violent extremist” and that it was too early to determine whether he had been radicalized. “This is a complex, ongoing investigation, and we’re still in the early stages of piecing together exactly what happened and why,” Reinhold said. “The FBI has been working almost 400 leads, and has an estimated 250 personnel on the ground in the area, and hundreds more working across the country and around the world on this investigation.” We appreciate the deliberate and thorough investigation, but let’s call a spade a spade.
Maybe that failure is why it took Barack Obama five days to call for lowering the flag.
For four years, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno was in Iraq, spending more time in the theater than any other military leader. He was a key architect of the successful “surge” that gave Iraq a short-lived bout of stability and relative prosperity. And then Barack Obama came along.
Now weeks away from retirement after a nearly four-decade career, Odierno barely hides his disgust at the decline in Iraq since Obama withdrew American forces. In the debate before the 2011 withdrawal, Odierno requested a force of 30-35,000 troops be maintained in Iraq. Unfortunately, he was overruled by Obama’s narcissistic quest for political expediency in the 2012 campaign. He had promised to “end” (note: not win) the war, and Americans were generally war-weary. Never mind that Iraq was always envisioned as part of a Long War against Islamic extremism.
“It’s frustrating to watch” the rise of the Islamic State, lamented Odierno in his interview with Fox. “I go back to the work we did in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 and we got [Iraq] to a place that was really good. Violence was low, the economy was growing, [and] politics looked like it was heading in the right direction.” He added, “If we had stayed a little more engaged, I think maybe [the Islamic State’s rise] might have been prevented. I’ve always believed the United States played the role of honest broker between all the groups and when we pulled ourselves out we lost that role. … I think it would have been good for us to stay.”
Odierno didn’t explicitly say so, but he strongly implied that Obama’s foolish withdrawal from Iraq is directly responsible for the rise of the Islamic State.
Aside from very occasional airstrikes against a handful of Islamic State-controlled targets and ground forays conducted by Iraqi troops under U.S. advisement (and with the assistance of Iranian-backed militia groups), Obama has largely abandoned the Iraqis to the wolves of the al-Baghdadi caliphate. In fact, some foreign-policy pundits are becoming convinced that life under the Islamic State may not be so bad if you keep your nose clean and don’t make the regime mad. They may not yet make the trains run on time, but they argue there’s far less corruption than you’d find under the Iraqi and Syrian governments.
It appears that Obama is trying to walk the thin line between not becoming too involved in the Middle East but not completely ceding to the Islamic State. It’s a set of actions reminiscent of his negotiations with Iran, where State Department negotiators managed to let Iran get away with rhetorical nuclear murder by their insistence that even a horrendous deal was better than no deal at all. Odierno supported the Iranian nuclear pact, but added in the Fox interview that Iran will continue to be an aggressor and instigator.
Meanwhile, Obama is reducing the size of the military, which Odierno warns means the U.S. will be unable to “deter conflict and prevent wars.” Shrinking the Army from 570,000 to 490,000 soldiers, for example, is a problem. “In my mind, we don’t have the ability to deter,” Odierno explained. “The reason we have a military is to deter conflict and prevent wars. And if people believe we are not big enough to respond, they miscalculate.”
Sometimes it’s hard to tell, but as close as we can figure this is the Obama Doctrine toward Islamic terrorists: Put off the day of reckoning until the next administration and hope the collateral damage is kept largely in that region. But when a U.S. city or Jerusalem become a smoking ruin from either an Iranian nuke or an Islamic State terror attack — never mind the increasing “lone wolf” attacks like the one in Chattanooga — we’ll see the bitter harvest of what Obama has sown by not seeing through the Long War.
OPINION IN BRIEF
Ken Blackwell: “On Oct. 21, 1994, President Bill Clinton announced a deal with North Korea aimed at ending its pursuit of a nuclear weapon. ‘This is a good deal for the United States,’ Clinton said. ‘North Korea will freeze and then dismantle its nuclear program. South Korea and our other allies will be better protected. The entire world will be safer as we slow the spread of nuclear weapons.’ … Twenty one years later, from the exact spot in the White House, President Obama said, ‘Iran is permanently prohibited from pursuing a nuclear weapon under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which provided the basis for the international community’s efforts to apply pressure on Iran.’ … The result of the North Korean agreement became clear on Oct. 9, 2006, when North Korea took the world by surprise and conducted its first successful test of a nuclear weapon. … President Obama does not appear to know the history of nuclear proliferation. But that is no reason why the country as a whole should be destined to repeat it.”
“In general, the art of government consists in taking as much money as possible from one party of the citizens to give to the other.” —French writer Voltaire (1694-1778)
Upright: “[Hillary Clinton] still doesn’t have real opponents who are going to challenge her for the nomination in the end. But we have gotten to see her. And it turns out that the more you see her, the more her numbers go down. That’s the definition of a weak candidate.” —Charles Krauthammer
Alpha Jackass: “To some degree the Tea Party is an expression of frustration. They see a bunch of stuff going on that they don’t understand and they feel threatened by, and then they react.” —Barack Obama (No, what we understand is his constant violation of the Constitution.)
The BIG Lie: “By the time I leave here, I think we’re going to be able to say that government is working much better, much more efficiently, much more customer-friendly than when I came into office.” —Barack Obama (Conservatives targeted by the IRS and veterans left for dead by the VA beg to differ.)
“The White House [made] a special Twitter account to answer questions about the new nuclear agreement. Finally using Twitter for what it was designed for — explaining complex, international nuclear agreements involving several nations.” —Seth Meyers
Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis!
Managing Editor Nate Jackson
Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families.