Friday, December 9, 2011

Obama: Chamberlain or Corleone?

Republicans have lately begun to charge that President Obama is an appeaser, a veritable Neville Chamberlain, in his approach to foreign affairs. Seriously. They're actually saying the guy who had Bin Laden whacked, Michael Corleone-style, is a weak sister. Rather than simply ignoring this claptrap, the DC press corps insisted on having the commander in chief respond. So he did, memorably: "Ask Osama bin Laden and the 22-out-of-30 top al Qaeda leaders who've been taken off the field whether I engage in appeasement. Or whoever is left out there, ask them about that," Obama remarked. Cue the chill wind. (I just love it when Obama goes all Godfather on his detractors and their enablers.)

Washington Monthly writer Steve Benen agreed that the weakling talk is laughable on its face. But he oddly felt it necessary to caveat his commentary. He wrote: "Now, there's a reasonable discussion to be had over whether the president should boast about how many people he's had killed, even if the targets are al Qaeda terrorists." Um, really? The moralists aside (who, like bad weather, will always be with us), is there really a detectable chorus in America that is fretting over whether no-drama Obama is dancing too eagerly in the endzone? Is this, as Benen suggests, really a "legitimate" subject for debate? If so, would a prime-time panel discussion hosted by Anderson Cooper help? Or is that still too tame for this obsession with self-flagellating? Please. Let's call out this malarkey for what it is: political correctness run amok.

If the ghost of Neville Chamberlain lives, he lurks among the hand-wringing punditry class, not at the the White House. Clearly, Obama has long internalized what Michael Corleone famously said in Godfather: Part II: "If anything in this life is certain, if history has taught us anything, it is that you can kill anyone." Like Obama said, just ask al Qaeda -- or, I might add, the late Colonel Qaddafi.

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