Who can keep up with events at such a time? The last presidential election was engulfed by the global financial crisis. This one is being devoured by another crisis that already looks to be a good deal more intractable than a mere economic downturn. There may be many negatives about American power but the world may be a much much worse place without it.
Whether anyone can put the genii back into the bottle is the question of the moment. That Obama, who has let this genii out and into the world, cannot do so is without question. One can only hope that the American people have enough collective sense to elect Romney in his place. What a fantastically dangerous world we are all about to inherit. What a mad experiment it was to elect such a novice as president.
The thing about Mitt Romney is that he is his own man. It is not only that he has genuinely sound judgment but he is willing to back himself against everyone else. This already looks like an ancient story but does give some hope that Romney may be the man for the times.
Mitt Romney hammered President Obama over his handling of the violent protests at American diplomatic missions in north Africa — and stuck to his attack throughout Wednesday, even as criticism flew from both sides of the aisle.
This business about criticism from “both sides of the aisle” is beyond me. If there really are Republicans who thought that this should not be the single most important political issue of the day and that Romney should not be whipsawing the president in every spare moment about his foreign policy failures, then they ought to leave politics for something a bit less cutting edge, journalism say. If ever there has been an issue of the moment to discuss, this is it. Listening to the American president deal with the world unraveling is terrifying. The only direct quote from Romney in the story is this:
I also believe the administration was wrong to stand by a statement sympathizing with those who had breached our embassy in Egypt instead of condemning their actions. It’s never too early for the United States government to condemn attacks on Americans and defend our values.
If that’s not acceptable to every Republican, indeed to every American, there really is an idiocy around that is getting harder to fathom.
At Instapundit, Glenn Reynolds at least reprints a long excerpt from The Washington Examiner which says some of the right kinds of things:
Forgive President Obama if he seemed a bit shell-shocked during his brief statement Wednesday on the murderous attack against an American consulate in Libya. In June 2009, he had grand plans for harmony between East and West. In a celebrated speech delivered in Cairo, Obama spoke earnestly about the need for the West and the Muslim world to look past old hostilities and suspicions.
And then on Tuesday night, his grand vision came crashing down.
Before the deadly attack in Benghazi, in which the American ambassador and three others were killed, there was another attack in Cairo. That one could well serve as a microcosm of Obama’s broader dealings in the Middle East. Just before a mob attacked the U.S. Embassy there, the diplomats took to Twitter to ‘condemn’ a group of private American citizens who had created an offensive online film about the prophet Muhammad. (The film was the pretext for the rioting). ‘The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims,’ they tweeted. And so, after a painful and futile decade of spreading ‘democracy’ and ‘freedom’ by force in the Islamic world, American civil servants sacrificed the First Amendment in an attempt to appease an angry mob.
Naturally, these apologies (which the administration later disowned) did nothing to prevent the attack that followed or to make the embassy’s occupants safer. Rioters desecrated the American flag, replaced it with a black Islamic flag used by al Qaeda, and, according to Cairo’s daily Al-Ahram, chanted: ‘Obama, Obama, there are still a billion Osamas.’
The lesson from that small (and unlike in Libya, bloodless) incident applies to Obama’s entire foreign policy vision: Whatever foreign policy you want to adopt, groveling is no way to bring it about.
Also via Instapundit, is this conclusion from a long posting by James Taranto at The Wall Street Journal:
The idea that a submissive-sounding president could set things right in the Muslim world always struck us as far-fetched. Yesterday’s events render it indefensible.
Oh what a world we live in!