Skip to comments.Quite A Defense
Posted on 09/24/2006 5:28:49 PM PDT by ButThreeLeftsDo
Byron York exposes the pathetic nature of former president Clinton's defense of his failure to take out Osama bin Laden. Clinton rests his defense on Richard Clarke's book: "All Im asking is if anybody wants to say I didnt do enough, you read Richard Clarkes book." But even in Clarke's pro-Clinton account, the former president comes across as hopelessly unserious. Here's how Clarke sums things up:
Because of the intensity of the political opposition that Clinton engendered, he had been heavily criticized for bombing al Qaeda camps in Afghanistan, for engaging in Wag the Dog tactics to divert attention from a scandal about his personal life. For similar reasons, he could not fire the recalcitrant FBI Director who had failed to fix the Bureau or to uncover terrorists in the United States. He had given the CIA unprecedented authority to go after bin Laden personally and al Qaeda, but had not taken steps when they did little or nothing. Because Clinton was criticized as a Vietnam War opponent without a military record, he was limited in his ability to direct the military to engage in anti-terrorist commando operations they did not want to conduct. He had tried that in Somalia, and the military had made mistakes and blamed him. In the absence of a bigger provocation from al Qaeda to silence his critics, Clinton thought he could do no more. So Clinton, who was quite popular by 1996 and remained popular even through the impeachment process, was unwilling to use his political capital to murder a man who was already responsible for killing Americans and who was known to be plotting to kill many more. Sure, presidents are expected to take tough and unpopular action from time to time, but pushing the bureucracy to kill the world's leading terrorist was asking too much from Clinton.
The pro-Clinton Richard Clarke has managed to capture in a paragraph why Clinton, despite his enormous gifts, was unfit for high office, and why President Bush deserves credit for being willing to push the bureaucracy, ignore partisan criticism, and make the tough calls.
The trouble with Clinton was the trouble with all liberals - "liberals" sell out for PR. And you only do that if you have no principles above your own convenience. Just like journalists.
If the only thing that matters is your own image and your own perquisites, you cannot do something for the good of the country at the expense of your immediate reputation. For example, the right thing for FDR to do would have been to oppose Hitler so strongly so early that he would have been defeated for reelection (appeasement of Hitler polled 80% before WWII).
I was just about to have this thread pulled to save BW because it was drawing zero interest.
Thank you for a brilliant response!!
Clinton uses throw aways like: "..go reach Dick Clarke's book."
He knows full well few will read it; otherwise relying on his clever little theatrical performance for their opinions..for those inclined to like him.
That is how the despicable get through horrible news, with few minds being changed.
Sort of: "Osama could have danced with Bill at his second inauguration, and we'd still love Bill."
I agree. Indecision is the result of looking for direction from the polls. You can't get out in front and lead, because without a moral compass you have no idea where to go.
"Consensus Is The Absence of Leadership"- Margaret Thatcher
I don't suppose that, while he was still a cogent enough thinker to write his farewell letter, Ronald Reagan had the presence of mind to tape record a eulogy for her, as she did for him. More's the pity. Tho we can hope that she requested it at that time . . . or maybe there exists a tape of Reagan introducing Thatcher at a public event somewhere??
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