By Tony Perkins
President Obama may be a decent golfer, but he obviously needs a bigger handicap on his foreign policy game. While the leader of the free world tees up everything but a solution for the Middle East, even the Washington Post and New York Times are suspicious of his priorities. Dana Milbank’s “Obama vacations as the world burns” called out the President for sticking to his plans to jet off to Martha’s Vineyard — “a decision,” he wrote, “that if not in the category of stupid stuff, could fit under the heading of ‘tone deafness.'”
The optics for a White House renowned for its PR skills were less than flattering. While the administration did draw the line at another late-night TV stop after the airstrikes started, nothing could keep the President from his $32,400-a-plate donor dinners. His steady diet of fundraising dinners had already raised plenty of eyebrows — especially compared to his predecessor’s. At the same point in his presidency, George W. Bush had gone to 217 fundraisers — 178 less than Obama.
Granted, Democrats will probably need the money after the last two years of party incompetence, but no amount of campaign cash can make up for the missing leadership America so desperately needs. Unfortunately, this is consistent with the indifference Americans have come to expect from an administration that did nothing as terrorists took over Syria. Months later, a “wartime vacation” (as Milbank calls it) isn’t exactly helping the President’s foreign policy approval ratings — which sits at a pitiful 38%. And that doesn’t include the French, who’ve expressed pretty strong feelings about the President’s projected disinterest. (You know you’re slacking when the inventors of laissez faire are criticizing you!) “I know it is the holiday period in our Western countries,” said French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, “but when people are dying, you must come back from vacation.”
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Meanwhile, in Iraq, the U.S. has stepped up its military presence — and just in time, it seems. The handful of media who have made it to Mount Sinjar paint a horrifying picture of the conditions there, as the thousands of people pinned on the slopes resort to desperate measures just to stay alive. In the absence of water, rumors of children drinking their parents’ blood are horrifying, while others frantically try to survive the sweltering heat.
Of course, the oblivion isn’t just limited to the President. The head of American diplomacy — Secretary of State John Kerry — is so clueless that he spent yesterday’s stop in the Solomon Islands talking about climate change. The only climate he should be focusing on is the Middle East’s! He says the sky is falling on global warming, when what’s actually falling are bombs — in a global crisis of the administration’s partial making.
Tony Perkins is president of the Washington, D.C.-based Family Research Council. He is a former member of the Louisiana legislature where he served for eight years, and he is recognized as a legislative pioneer for authoring measures like the nation’s first Covenant Marriage law.
(Via FRC’s Washington Update. Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.)
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