Symbols matter throughout the world, but no more so than in the Middle East. So President Obama’s no-show in Paris, where an unprecedented million-and-a-half people marched, with over 40 world leaders to show the world that they will not be intimidated by Islamic terrorism, was an embarrassment for all Americans, and one that’s likely to cause more problems.
Like it or not, the Ummah (Muslim world) seems likely to take that absence as another subtle message that Obama stood with the Islamic Jihadis who were defending the Prophet Mohammed.
For the supposed leader of the free world to be a no-show was an affront to Western democracies. The Obama Administration is now in full damage control mode by admitting it made an “error.” Was it an error or deliberate?
President Obama was not alone in his Paris no-show. If the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, who is number two in line for the presidency, and the new Senate Majority leader, Mitch McConnell, had the political courage to stand up for freedom and democracy, they both would have been in Paris showing the world where the United States Congress stands.
Of course, there have been many signals by the Obama Administration that the mainstream media have chosen to ignore or underplay.
For example, in his June 4, 2009 Cairo “outreach” speech to the Muslim world, he gave some insight when he stated that he considered part of his responsibility as President of the United States was to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear. I don’t think such a statement is in his oath of office.
Furthermore, he signaled his support for the “Arab Spring” Islamic uprisings. Both al-Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood understood by that signal that the United States under President Obama would not stand in their way in the revolution to come. Finally, in his September 2012 speech to the U.N. General Assembly, Obama declared “that the future must not belong to those who slander the Prophet of Islam.” That should have dispelled any doubt.
America’s response to the Arab Spring represented a dramatic shift in our Middle East policy that would have major consequences for America’s standing in that region and beyond. The “Arab Spring” was promoted by the Administration as a freedom and democracy movement. It was not even a close call. It was an Islamist “supremacist” awakening!
Under the Obama Administration, key was the fact that we “switched sides” in the Islamic Jihad wars and dumped our allies in the Global War on Terror. We were now supporting al-Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood (MB) affiliated militias and rebels, many of which fought against our forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Obama Administration’s embrace of the MB, whose creed is to destroy America from within by our own miserable hands and replace our Constitution with the draconian Shariah Law, should have been a wake-up call. For a number of years, the MB has been penetrating our government agencies (just as the Communists in the 1930s and ’40s did), but that has been greatly accelerated by the Administration’s “outreach to Muslim” policy. The penetration has been institutionalized at the top levels of our national security agencies, and the entire intelligence community.
As a result of the MB influence, the Administration directed all of our training manuals that accurately described the Islamic threat to be purged by removing anything that didn’t portray Islam as a religion of peace. Today, all our military, the FBI, local police forces, and the entire national security community have effectively been neutralized. Political Correctness has silenced our military leadership. We are essentially repeating the mistakes in Afghanistan that we made in Iraq. President Obama’s announcement of the end of offensive operations in Afghanistan was a clear signal to the Taliban. It will be only a matter of time before they return to Kabul.
Our failed Counter-Insurgency (CI) with its restricted Rules of Engagement (ROE’s) needlessly exposed our military forces in Afghanistan, causing many fatalities and permanent injuries in the futile hope of winning the hearts and minds of a tribal society. The Taliban knew our ROE’s as well as our own forces and exploited them. For example, there were many engagements when our forces were placed in jeopardy because they were prevented from employing available resources for fear of collateral damage.
Such dereliction of duty also caused the death of four Americans in Benghazi. The failure to respond when there were forces available was un-American. However, it did send another signal of where this Administration stands.
With the Paris tragedy getting all the current headlines, we should not overlook Egyptian President Abdel-Fatlah el-Sissi’s New Year’s Day dramatic speech before a clerical audience at Cairo’s Al-Azhar, the world’s leading center of Islamic thought, in which he challenged Islam’s leading clerics to launch a reformation of Islam.
In another unprecedented move, he then went to the Coptic Christmas mass to show solidarity, and promised to help rebuild their churches. These were monumental moves by President el-Sissi that should receive the full support of the Administration, but, in fact, did not even get an acknowledgment. Yet another clear signal by the Obama Administration.
What more does it take to show where lie the sympathies of the Obama Administration? The continued release of hardened terrorists from Gitmo says it all. With its many other scandals and its tragic open border policies, which are unconstitutional, Congress must act to preserve and protect the country by initiating impeachment proceedings.
James A. Lyons, U.S. Navy retired Admiral, was commander-in-chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet and senior U.S. military representative to the United Nations.