American Elephants

We Need A Serious Discussion, Not Lies and Evasions. by The Elephant's Child

Drudge has been having fun with appropriately combining headlines.

Ambassador Rice:’ Attack NOT Premeditated…

Libyan president: ‘No doubt’ was ‘preplanned’ starting months ago…
Video Purports to Show USA Ambassador Dragged, Cheers From Crowd…

Meanwhile back at the ranch, the President, the Secretary of State and the Ambassador to the UN all blithely insist that it was only about the video. Or, to clarify “Don’t Blame Us!”

Drudge’s headline:  “AMERICA? Filmmaker taken in for interview…”

Administration lies have reached such a point that it would be enormously refreshing just to hear someone say: “You know we really messed up here.”

And yes. the administration and the State Department really messed up and the result is a not only the loss of four fine public servants, but worldwide humiliation. The White House has told us that all the hatred, death , destruction is entirely due to a 14 minute YouTube video that nobody has seen, but that the movie critics in the administration have declared to be disgusting. It has embarrassed the president which accounts for his hauling the moviemaker in to be questioned in direct contravention to the First Amendment to the Constitution, which he took an oath to uphold. Freedom of speech doesn’t apply only to nice things of which we approve, but to dumb or disgusting things as well.

According to the way diplomacy is usually done, as I understand it, the offending nation is told to round-up and punish the malefactors. Visits are cancelled, aid is halted, and requests for relief or assistance are ended, and it clears the air a little.

The president has assumed that Muslim nations would regard him differently because he lived in a Moslem country for 5 years when he was a small child. He was wrong.He assumed that a president who didn’t look like other presidents would be better received.  He has assumed that  if we just respected Islam more, that kindness would be returned. He was wrong. He assumed that his constant crowing about having killed bin Laden would be overlooked, and his “kill list” for drone attacks that indiscriminately kill suspected members of al Qaeda would make no difference.  He was wrong. Regular attendance at intelligence briefings might have alerted him to the importance of noted anniversaries. His rushing off to Las Vegas for another fundraising appearance indicates the seriousness he attributes to the episode.

Acting in the traditional diplomatic manner is important. There should be severe punishment for the perpetrators, and if serious enough, then the matter can be closed. If the governments do not respond or resist or evade our demands, then we should withhold aid, seize assets, break off diplomatic relations and reduce visa awards or other sanctions. This not only clears the air, but it protects our diplomats worldwide. There must be consequences.

The media reaction to this crisis has been embarrassing. They have been willing to twist themselves into a complete denial of everything that the best of journalism once aimed for, and cravenly become no more than the sleazy public relations arm of the White House. Papers in England and Germany explained the crisis while US papers concentrated on whether it was appropriate for Mitt Romney to criticize the president who is so far above reproach. The crisis is not ready to wind down yet,  so there is plenty of time for the media to actually start covering it.  But if they actually reported on it, it wouldn’t be good for the president, so it probably won’t happen.

Obama did find time for a reportedly “tense” conversation with Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, who then made a public statement denouncing the attacks.  On the phone Morsi reportedly asked Obama to “put an end to such behavior”— suppress the video.  Morsi lived in the U.S. for several years, he surely should be familiar with our First Amendment.

Unfortunately our response seems to be to apologize for hurting Muslim feelings, ignore the Constitution,  blame Mitt, and lie to the American people.

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