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Publius / January 13, 2016

A Boast Exposes a Huge Failure

We might be strong, but our enemies have gotten more dangerous.

Among Barack Obama’s many foolish utterances in his State of the Union Address was his chest-thumping boast that “the United States of America is the most powerful nation on Earth, period.” Iraq War veteran and National Review commentator David French writes that this claim, while true as far as it goes, also belies Obama’s greatest failure. “[I]f America is the world’s most powerful nation, why are so many of our worst enemies far stronger and more dangerous than when Obama took office?” French asks. He then explains, “In 2009, ISIS existed as the scattered fragments of al Qaeda in Iraq — a spent force numbering only in the hundreds after its comprehensive defeat in the Surge. Libya’s dictator was contained and compliant after voluntarily giving up his WMD program in the aftermath of the ‘shock and awe’ of the Iraq invasion. Iran was still dangerous, of course, but with American forces in both Iraq and Afghanistan, it’s influence was limited, and sanctions hampered its economic growth. Now, ISIS rules a caliphate in Iraq and Syria, Libya is a jihadist cesspool, and Iran is empowered and emboldened after a nuclear ‘deal’ that will grant it a $150 billion stimulus and access to international arms markets. It’s so emboldened, in fact, that it can vow to continue its support for terror, expand its reach into Iraq, test ballistic missiles, launch rockets near an American carrier, and even seize and hold American sailors — and President Obama actually responds by bragging that he ‘avoided war.’ No, America hasn’t ‘avoided war,’ it’s just promised not to effectively fight as Iran continues the same war it’s been waging since 1979, a war that has claimed hundreds of American lives.” French knows; he served with men killed by Iranian arms.

In summary, French says, “He turned his back on friends, courted our enemies, and stood aside as victories turned into defeats and the jihadist armies grew larger than any time in modern history. Yes, America has a strong economy and a strong military. It does not have a strong leader, and our enemies have seized the initiative.”

Indeed, Obama’s “leading from behind” has accomplished little but to diminish our status as the world’s lone superpower. That’s bound to happen with a commander in chief who has traveled the world to apologize for his own nation.

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