Boy, am I disappointed in President Obama.
Sure, I’m happy that Obama kept his promise and put a renewed focus on getting Osama bin Laden. And I’m glad the operation to kill bin Laden went off perfectly without a single American casualty. However, it’s the aftermath that disappoints me.
All Obama did afterward was praise our military and our country in general. He gave credit where credit was due, but he totally failed to take personal credit for the successful outcome of this action.
Where’s the big celebration where the President struts around in a military flight suit? Where is the Mission Accomplished banner, the false bravado and tough talk? When will we hear claims that his political opponents are limp-wristed pansies who are weak on defense? Where are the fundraising emails trying to generate political contributions based on the successful elimination of our country’s most hated enemy?
It’s almost as if this president’s only concern is killing terrorists and defending our country. Doesn’t he know how to exploit a major event for political gain? He’s certainly seen enough examples of that from his predecessor.
But more importantly, when will Obama thumb his nose at Dick Cheney for openly rooting for a terrorist attack against the U.S.? Cheney spent the past 2 years telling anyone and everyone who will listen that Obama is making us weak in the war on terror. He’s essentially been telling our enemies, hurry up, right now would be an excellent time to attack us.
After the tragedy of September 11, 2001, everyone rallied around the president. There were no Democrats or Republicans, just Americans united against the people who attacked us. The Bush administration didn’t let that sense of unity go to waste. They spent the next few years manipulating voters by using our fear of terrorism and our shared memory of 9/11 to their political advantage.
We have, thus far, gone two years and three months into Obama’s term as president without a single successful attack on our soil by a foreign terrorist. By this time in Bush’s first term we had been successfully attacked at least twice, first on 9/11 and again on July 4, 2002, when an Egyptian terrorist shot six people, killing two, at the Los Angeles International Airport (Google it, you probably forgot about that one).
I don’t know what the future holds, but so far President Obama has done far better than Bush and Cheney in fighting terrorism.
Yet I don’t hear the Obama administration bragging about their success in protecting us from terrorism. I don’t hear them saying “If you vote for the wrong people we’ll get attacked again” as Dick Cheney said in 2004. They’re not even saying “If you don’t support my Cap and Trade bill, then the terrorists will win.”
No, rather than scaring the voters into re-electing him, I fear that this president is more concerned with trivialities like stimulating the economy, creating jobs, protecting us from terrorism, ending two wars, giving us better access to health care, and saving Medicare and Social Security.
Perhaps rather than cynically manipulating the public through fear and empty symbolism, President Obama is actually going to run on meaningful issues. Perhaps he has faith that the American people are smart enough to judge him on the merits of his actions as president and not on the hateful rhetoric that will be spewing from Republicans as the election gets closer. Let’s hope he’s right and the American voters have learned not to repeat their past mistakes.