Obama’s speech and the consequences

The Daily Show examines president Obama’s ISIS speech on Wednesday and concludes that he has thrown away his reluctance to get involved in yet another front on the never-ending war and has gone all in with the warmongers.

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Meanwhile Dan Froomkin takes a close look at Obama’s speech and thinks that it may not be all that it was cracked up to be and that carefully parsing his words one sees that he is promising to do much less than it looks at first glance, and that in fact he was asking people to calm down.

I do not know that I agree with Froomkin’s analysis but even if he is right, it will not matter. In politics, appearance quickly overtakes reality. If the public has the impression that Obama has promised all-out war on ISIS (and it was even bellicose-sounding enough for Rush Limbaugh), then it does not matter if he later points to his words as an explanation for why he did much less. No one will listen. If Obama was trying to do that, his Clintonian parsing is being too clever by half.


  1. md says

    “We will pursue these terrorists to the ends of the earth without actually letting our soldiers touch their boots to the earth”

  2. says

    There are at least 600 special forces and “advisors” there already that have been announced in the news. I am guessing they are all wearing fluffy pink bunny slippers instead of boots.

  3. aashiq says

    There is Israeli pressure behind Obama’s moves.

    The Israeli government advised Kerry and Indyk that it has no intention of allowing a Palestinian state. It responded to their willing to talk with a unity Palestinian government by attacking Gaza and stepping up West Bank colonization.

    What’s the US to do, in order to follow Israel’s direction? Start a new war, which provides cover for Israel to step up the pace of its “slow genocide” of Palestinians (term used by many Israelis).

    The option of disagreeing with Israel and pursuing an independent policy does not exist, for the US. This continues to be the real story: that the US is effectively a colony of Israel when it comes to Mideast matters.

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