The horrific attacks of 9/11 emerged from a leadership vacuum similar to the one we are witnessing today. While revisionists (including Hillary Clinton and Madeleine Albright) like to claim that President Clinton presided over eight years of peace and prosperity, Bill’s willful disregard of numerous attacks on Americans emboldened the jihadists who flew the planes into the Twin Towers.
Now, after winning another four years in the Oval Office, President Obama is following Clinton’s game plan, shrugging off jihadist threats and risking the security of the country.
London’s Sunday Times has reported that political concerns prompted Obama to delay green lighting a mission to rescue reporter James Foley, who was subsequently murdered by ISIS. The president was afraid that if the mission failed, he would face recriminations like those hurled at Jimmy Carter after his administration bungled a plan to liberate Americans held in Iran.
No one can know whether Obama’s month-long dithering led to the mission’s failure, but since the hostages had been relocated by the time the Special Forces arrived, it is certainly a possibility. Worrying about polling instead of protecting Americans is a hallmark of Obama’s tenure, as it was of Bill Clinton’s. And it’s as dangerous today as it was then.
Democrats have crafted a flattering portrait of Bill Clinton’s time in office – a growing economy, comity in Congress, safety abroad. Many voters lean towards Hillary Clinton because they hope for a replay of those good times. They are kidding themselves. During that eight-year period, the White House was in constant turmoil, beset by one scandal after another. After all, it’s not easy to be impeached; Clinton was only the second president in our history who managed to do so.
Like Obama, a distracted Bill Clinton tried to pin numerous jihadist attacks on random individuals, and handed them over to law enforcement agencies, as though they were no more serious than a bank robbery. Here is what actually happened during Mr. Clinton’s presidency:
February 26, 1993: Al-Qaeda-linked terrorists bomb
November 13, 1995: Car bomb explodes at U.S. military headquarters in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Five U.S. servicemen killed. Bill starts affair with Monica Lewinsky.
June 25, 1996: Hezbollah group detonates truck bomb outside
August 7, 1998: Al-Qaeda sets off near-simultaneous truck bombs in
October 12, 2000: In
What was Bill Clinton’s response to the wave of terrorist assaults? Nothing. Like Obama, he made appropriate remarks and then reviewed the polling for how he should proceed. As the National Review’s Byron York detailed in 2006,
Why is it important to review this sorry saga? Because we see today a similar pattern, as Obama dismisses or deliberately misconstrues looming threats to
Similarly, his decision to ignore his own line in the sand in
Now we are threatened by a terrorist organization that clearly has the Pentagon on full alert and that has rattled the country. ISIS is not the only force taking advantage of the empty Oval Office.
Meanwhile, the Chinese see that the
Most recently, a Chinese J-11 fighter jet buzzed one of our surveillance planes flying in international air space at dangerously close range. That Beijing would allow such a gesture of what -- defiance? dismissal? – is an embarrassment.
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