Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Obama, Netanyahu, and Defining Statesmanship

 

Tension-between-Obama-and-NetanyahuIn his masterpiece, Crisis of the House Divided, the late, great Harry Jaffa undertook the task of defining statesmanship:

“The task of statesmanship, in part, is to clarify the alternatives that are before the country and to compel the people to a genuine and not a spurious or illusory choice.”

This implies that the first step in the process is to be honest in describing reality. I submit that Barack Obama, on virtually every foreign policy issue facing America, has been fundamentally dishonest in describing the issues facing America and the world.

For example, we can debate the nature and legacy of the Crusades, but they are irrelevant to the problem of Islamist terrorism in the 21st century.

You can all America’s foreign policy “strategic patience,” but it really is simply a form of slow-rolling appeasement.

Vladimir Putin quite obviously intends to re-create, to the extent possible, something akin to the old Soviet Empire (which, to quote a presidential truth-teller, was an “evil empire”). Hitting a reset button has not and will not change that fundamental fact.

And on and on and on.

By refusing to speak truth to the American people, Obama presents us, time after time, with spurious and illusory choices. Conclusion: Under Harry Jaffa’s definition, Obama ain’t no statesman.

By contrast, Bibi Netanyahu has no reservations about telling the truth to his people and to the world. As a consequence, he describes the real choices we face. The wrong choice may be made, but the competing approaches are at least based on the real world.

Today, he’ll speak truth to the American Congress. Liberals may close their ears to those truths, but they will remain truths nonetheless.

Sadly, the mendacity of our president will, I fear, have real consequences; they won’t be good for America, Israel, our other allies, or for the world.

It makes me want to sit down and have a good cry.

There are 10 comments.

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  1. Boss Mongo Member

    Good post. Thanks.

    • #1
    • March 2, 2015, at 7:31 PM PST
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  2. Dr. Jimmy Carter Member
    Dr. Jimmy Carter Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    While We’re telling the Truth, then

    tabula rasa: Islamist terrorism

    is redundant.

    • #2
    • March 2, 2015, at 7:39 PM PST
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  3. tabula rasa Member
    tabula rasa Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Jimmy Carter:While We’re telling the Truth, then

    tabula rasa: Islamist terrorism

    is redundant.

    Well said. I agree.

    • #3
    • March 2, 2015, at 9:09 PM PST
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  4. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I hope many Ricochetti will be surrounding the Prime Minister with prayer during his speech, asking for the protection of angels and the Holy Spirit to open minds and hearts. “Let him who has ears listen.”

    • #4
    • March 3, 2015, at 4:01 AM PST
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  5. KC Mulville Inactive

    The problem with the Bibi speech is that the people it needs to influence directly (the president, SecState, and his negotiators) are not listening. Therefore, the only recourse is to appeal to them indirectly, by going to the people first and hoping they will put pressure on the administration.

    The incredible danger posed by Obama’s naivete and/or ideology have convinced me that, more than ever, we need to rein in the office of the president. When one stubborn idiot can effectively run the country by himself, refusing to abide by any constraint, it’s time to re-evaluate the assumptions behind the whole scheme.

    • #5
    • March 3, 2015, at 7:42 AM PST
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  6. iWe Coolidge
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    The speech can be viewed online here.

    • #6
    • March 3, 2015, at 8:05 AM PST
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  7. Brian Watt Member
    Brian Watt Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Just watched Netanyahu’s speech. Hopefully Republican presidential candidates were taking notes for this is how you talk about the threat of militant Islam and how you frame the argument which our evasive and elusive president has deliberately failed to do.

    With this one speech, the Prime Minister of Israel, has succeeded in making Barack Obama look utterly clueless, naive and ineffectual about what’s happening on the world stage. Of course, many of us knew that before but now hopefully more people are getting their eyes opened since Obama and many of the Democrats chose to make the speech so controversial.

    • #7
    • March 3, 2015, at 9:38 AM PST
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  8. Daniel Wood Inactive

    “The incredible danger posed by Obama’s naivete and/or ideology have convinced me that, more than ever, we need to rein in the office of the president. When one stubborn idiot can effectively run the country by himself, refusing to abide by any constraint, it’s time to re-evaluate the assumptions behind the whole scheme.”

    Amen. Perfectly stated.

    • #8
    • March 3, 2015, at 9:55 AM PST
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  9. Gil Reich Inactive

    Excellent. But don’t cry. The Obama era is ending, and I think things are looking up.

    • #9
    • March 3, 2015, at 11:27 AM PST
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  10. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    As the PM said at the end of his speech, now is not the time for despair or fear.

    I wish I felt more hopeful and confident…

    • #10
    • March 3, 2015, at 11:36 AM PST
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