By Rebekah Maxwell – BarbWire guest contributor
Obama delayed Foley’s rescue to avoid bad PR: The President is had a tough vacation. True, he’s not really worried about Iraq falling to ISIS control, war raging in Israel, war brewing in Ukraine, chaos in Ferguson, the invasion on the border, or even the beheading of a American citizen. But he is worried about the most important thing of all: his own image.
In fact, he was so worried about his top priority, that he may actually have cost James Foley his life.
As reported by Breitbart News, Obama may have delayed a mission to rescue Foley for nearly a month:
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A new Sunday Times report, “Pentagon sources said Foley and the others might well have been rescued but Obama, concerned about the ramifications of US troops being killed or captured in Syria, took too long to authorize the mission.”
It’s claimed that Obama was concerned about his administration being Carterized had the mission failed.
However, it also seems worth noting that the eventual timing of the mission may have made for a nice July 4th weekend announcement for Obama had the mission succeeded. Instead, Obama played golf on July 5th, as well as an additional six times in the month he is said to have spent agonizing over his decision, the delay of which may have cost journalist Foley his life.
Anthony Shaffer, a former lieutenant-colonel in US military intelligence who worked on covert operations, said: “I’m told it was almost a 30-day delay from when they said they wanted to go to when he finally gave the green light. They were ready to go in June to grab the guy [Foley] and they weren’t permitted.”
So…setting aside the responsibility a President might have to his own citizen who’s been captured by terrorists (because you know he already has), which scenario makes for better PR? 1) Making a rescue attempt when your military experts say it’s a good time, running the risk that the attempt may fail, but knowing you tried; or 2) “Agonizing over the decision” from the golf course until the terrorists make the decision for you and one innocent American is decapitated?
Instead, we get a brief statement of remorse, and it’s back to the golf course.
Just send one of your Admin’s bright sparks to tell us that Foley’s murder is not about the U.S. That’s very leadershipy.
Better play another round, Mr. President. The media will tell you when when the barbarians burn down the White House.
Ben Carson vs Jesse Jackson on racism: The concept of Dr Ben Carson running for president has many grassroots voters interested, and a few disquieted. He has no voting record, so people are paying close attention to every word he says. When it comes to application of principles (say on life or the 2nd Amendment), Carson can trip up. But when it comes to the meta-narratives (matching today’s problems with American solutions), Carson transcends.
On FOX News Sunday, Dr. Carson went head to head with Jesse Jackson over the Mike Brown shooting in Ferguson. Jackson likened Brown’s death to Rodney King and Trayvon Martin, that it was a racist “state execution.”
Carson pushed back, declaring that the 18-year-old’s death has “nothing to do with race,” citing his own experience growing up in urban dysfunction.
“If you take race out of the issue altogether,” he explained, “and you take a group of young men and you raise them with no respect for authority, not learning to take on personal responsibility, having easy access to drugs and alcohol, they’re very likely to end up as victims of violence and incarceration. Has nothing to do with race.”
I’ll take conversations that no other 2016 candidate will have for $400, Alex. This is one example of what Ben Carson can uniquely bring to the table– personal credibility on some of society’s biggest controversies. And if you’re one of the growing number who want Ben Carson to run, this is probably an example of why.
Rand says Dems are “scared” he’ll take liberal votes from Hillary: With war between Hamas and Israel, and ISIS slashing their way to power, foreign policy has come to the forefront of voters’ minds. And of all the 2016 hopefuls, the one who has the most to prove on that front is Rand Paul.
On NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Paul said his libertarian foreign policy is a threat to Hillary’s campaign, since he’s more anti-war than she is:
“I think the American public is coming more and more to where I am and that those people, like Hillary Clinton, who—she fought her own war, ‘Hillary’s war,’ you know?”
“And I think that’s what scares the Democrats the most: Is that in a general election, were I to run, there’s going to be a lot of independents and even some Democrats who say, ‘You know what? We are tired of war. We’re worried that Hillary Clinton will get us involved in another Middle Eastern war because she’s so gung-ho,” Paul said.
“If you want to see a transformational election in our country, let the Democrats put forward a war hawk like Hillary Clinton, and you’ll see a transformation like you’ve never seen.”
Most of Paul’s base is cheering right now at his comments. Most of the American public would have been cheering 9 months ago. But now we have to ask hard questions. How would a President Paul handle ISIS beheading American citizens? How would he answer a foreign declaration of war?
Current threats will force Rand to gel his theories into some real-world application. Being anti-war sounds good, but telling us to ‘play nice with ISIS’ will play about as well with general audiences as his dad’s “if I were Iran, I’d want a nuclear bomb, too” line. As in, a campaign killer. How does your theory apply to reality, Rand?
Meanwhile in Ferguson: The story that made a Missouri suburb into a racially-charged battleground continues to show how little we really know about living peaceably with all men.
Thousands gathered in Ferguson for the funeral of Michael Brown, including White House staffers and Trayvon Martin’s parents. A eulogy was delivered by MSNBC’s Al Sharpton. Media livestreamed the ceremony online.
They’re laying to rest “the unarmed eighteen-year-old who was shot and killed by a Ferguson police officer” pointing out that Brown “was set to begin college just days after he was killed.”
“Michael Brown’s blood is crying from the ground, crying for vengeance, crying for justice,” said the Rev. Charles Ewing, the teenager’s uncle. “There is a cry being made from the ground, not just for Michael Brown, but for the Trayvon Martins, for those children at Sandy Hook Elementary School, for the Columbine massacre, for the black-on-black crime.”
The death of any young person is tragic, especially a violent death. An avoidable death. His family has the right to mourn their loss. And we have a duty to respect their grief.
But it’s difficult to watch the world at large broadcast Brown’s funeral as a modern-day martyrdom for public and political spectacle. It’s difficult to watch the story of one young man’s death become a justification for further crime and hatred. It’s difficult to watch a pastor equate the terms “vengeance” and “justice,” and compare his 18-year old (robbery suspect) nephew to the kindergarteners massacred at Sandy Hook. It’s also hard to watch an American city become a civil war zone, to which the only solution is more federal and more forceful government control. The world is reacting to what they feel, and won’t let information hinder their indignation.
We know that Mike Brown was unarmed. We do not know that he was innocent.
We know Officer Darren Wilson was armed. We do not know if he is guilty.
We know that violence has begotten more violence, and bloodshed has begotten more bloodshed.
We know that we don’t trust our authorities and we cannot trust in vigilantes.
We know that we’re not looking for truth anymore: we’re looking to act out our anger and be called heroes (while behaving like villains).
And I do not know what kind of future we can expect when lawlessness reigns supreme. But I fear we’re finding out in Ferguson.
Rebekah Maxwell grew up from stage to stage in a Midwestern gypsy band, singing and playing music with her family. She was homeschooled from backstage to the front pew, a system that suited her independent, slightly contrary, nature. She completed her high school work at age 16, and then promptly got a job as announcer at a local radio station, opting for a career that combined music, microphones and live performance with a steady paycheck. She began reporting and producing at WHO Radio in 2007, with on-air work recognized by the official alphabet soup: the AP, IBNA, NBNA, RTDNA, NAB (all the while staying far from the TSA and UFOs). While she attended Drake University to learn the ropes of legitimate broadcast journalism, she’s also been quoted as saying that her experience with the Deace Show has been at least as educational as college (and at a lower interest rate). She delights in debating religion, politics, and all other subjects impolite at the dinner table. Her favorite time of year is Caucus season, and she’s an accomplished slam poet, ready to spit the truth…in mad rhymes, if necessary.
First published at SteveDeace.com
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.