Liddick: Apologist-in-Chief |

Liddick: Apologist-in-Chief

It’s time to see if we can figure out how Barack Obama’s mind works when it comes to figuring out who our friends are, and who we should give the skunk eye.

Let’s start with our closest European friends, the British. In our president’s very own version of “loose lips sink ships,” he has declared war on British Petroleum. His rattle-pated responses to the Gulf Oil Gusher – he was in charge, or BP was, depending on how things look and with whom he’s talking – his juvenile posturing, looking for someone’s “ass to kick” – and his transparent attempts to use the catastrophe for his own political ends have created pushback across the pond. It seems our British cousins have less appetite for empty gestures than we, and more concern about the effect of all this on the value of one of their largest enterprises.

President Obama thinks it’s all well and good to demand a private company cease paying dividends – it’s great political theatre for his leftie friends. He doesn’t worry about the effects of a possible BP bankruptcy on millions of Britons who hold shares in their retirement accounts, and he doesn’t care about the problems he’s creating for the government who does have to worry about it. But he should. A bankrupt BP very well might give the Gulf states – and the US in general – a one-finger salute. Then what?

Or we could consider Israel. We might agree that actions taken against the Hamas-backed Gaza “relief” convoy and the useful fools along for the ride was heavy handed. But for Israel, the necessity of confronting an enemy – Hamas – whose final goal is the elimination of the Jewish state and as many of its citizens as possible is an existential one. We should not be surprised if they act energetically. Despite this central fact, the Obama administration has called Israel’s Gaza blockade “untenable,” without any balancing notes on the vicious cynicism of the would-be blockade runners. This is a gratuitous slap at a state taking legitimate action against an implacable foe. One wonders what the administration’s response will be when Iran begins escorting ships to Gaza, as they have promised to do.

About Iran, how are those sanctions working out? The latest round, carefully crafted by the administration after months of wheedling our putative partners, has been described as “flies” and “a used tissue” by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. And make no mistake, Iran is not “isolated.” Despite the president’s repeated statements to that effect, its leaders meet their counterparts at will. Countries recently hob-nobbing with the mad mullahs include Brazil and Turkey, discussing a uranium-transfer deal, and Russia and China – the latter two among those being relied on by Obama to “isolate” Tehran. Succinctly, the administration’s approach to the Iranian problem is an abject failure. Barring concerted, vigorous action by the entire international community, Mr. Ahmadinejad will have his bomb soon. And the war he will launch with it will incinerate the Middle East and crash the world economy.

Speaking of China, how nice that our State Department’s Michael Posner attempted to create some moral equivalence between the US and China, citing Arizona’s soon-to-be enforced anti-illegal-immigrant law. Really? When we start rolling over thousands of illegals with tanks, there might be room for comparison. Or when we start jailing millions of dissidents. Until then, such attempts to soothe the feelings of Beijing’s totalitarians are idiotic. And since Mr. Posner still has a job, one assumes that his statements reflect the view of the highest levels of our government.

There’s a pattern running though all of these incidents, and hundreds more like them. It’s a pattern of apology, of self-loathing and a sense that our country is the source of all evil in the world today. It’s a viewpoint very common among the fashionable left, and Barack Obama is its paramount spokesman.

The practical corollary is that if only we grovel enough, abase ourselves enough, apologize enough, the Chinese, the Russians and others with whom we have to share this earth will like us and do as we wish. I’m certain, although they have not let on, that leaders in Moscow and Beijing are having a good laugh. Tehran and Pyongyang, being less practiced at the art of good behavior in public, have already let the world know what they think: our president is a dithering fool, and we are a nation of morons for having chosen him.

It’s a dangerous business electing an ideological idealist president. Our last was Woodrow Wilson, and it took the better part of the twentieth century and a second world war to rid ourselves of the bulk of his mischief. Now, it appears we have another. Let’s hope his legacy is neither as longstanding, nor as poisonous.

Summit County resident Morgan Liddick pens a Tuesday column. E-mail him at Also, comment on this column at

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