If we’re attacked while a Republican is in office, it’s not his fault

Obama and Hillary are so responsible for the attack on Benghazi wherein four people died. Pay no attention to the fact that Republicans gutted the budget for security at the embassy — the people at the top are responsible!

graph-attacks-on-US-diplomatic-targets

Just for comparison

Unless they’re Republicans, of course. When 3000 people died on 9/11 under Bush’s watch (even though he had been warned by both outgoing President Clinton and his own internal memos that this was bin Laden’s plan), clearly he can not be held responsible for such a thing.

At least Trump, for all his many faults, understands this basic concept. He’s caused another rift in the Republican campaign by pointing this out, and George W. Bush’s brother Jeb!* isn’t going to take this lying down!

But geez, don’t you dare ask him why then Obama and Hillary are responsible for the Benghazi attack, because then he’ll stare at the camera for a very long period, like a deer in the headlights, before rambling on for a few minutes about how security is important.

Seriously, watch this and look at his body language, because he’s being forced to say something that he knows in his soul isn’t true — that it is completely hypocritical to absolve blame for one incident while foisting blame in the other.

Squirm, baby, squirm.

*I believe he has added the ! to his name in much of the same way Prince changed his name into a symbol. 

 

The President who cried wolf?

Secretary of State John Kerry has presented evidence that chemical weapons were used in Syria, thus justifying our action.

All over the globe, people are saying, “Wait, haven’t we heard this before?”

When Colin Powell, on behalf of George W. Bush, assured us that Sadaam had weapons of mass destruction, most of the world said, “Well, he’s the President of the United States. He wouldn’t lie about something like this.”

So now there is a lot of skepticism among our allies, which we deserve. (Thank you, GWB — the incompetence, dishonesty, and the damage caused by your Presidency continue to haunt us.)

There are some major differences between the two situations, though:

First, we have UN inspectors with evidence that chemical weapons were used, along with actual victims.

Second, and more importantly, we have a President who does not want to go to war. Bush and Cheney were looking for an excuse to go after Sadaam for a variety of reasons (“He wanted to kill my Dad,” “Halliburton will make a ton of money”, and so on).

Obama clearly does not want to get himself into another Iraq, especially in Syria where there are no good guys. He warned Assad not to use chemical weapons in the hopes of preventing such a disaster, but that didn’t work and now he’s painted himself into a corner where he has to react. He has stated more than once that this will be a drone-style attack without any “boots on the ground,” but to what end? Will this really accomplish anything?

A few days ago, I criticized Obama for acting without congressional approval. He’s a Constitutional scholar — he used to teach Constitutional Law at the Law School level — and whaddya know? He turned around yesterday and asked Congress for approval.

This was not only the right decision legally, but also politically. Congress is now stuck in the situation where Obama can deflect whatever blame comes his way. “Hey, you guys voted the way you did, and I followed your instructions,” he can reply if things go bad either way. Smart.

But maybe Congress and the world would have a more uniform view had George W. Bush not lied about Iraq. To quote GWB, “Fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.”