Archive for Libya

President Obama’s Syrian Quandary

Posted in Foreign Policy, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 1, 2013 by authorcarloscardoso

The President has been hesitant to get involved in the Syrian civil war from the beginning. However during the heat of his re-election campaign in trying to sound strong on foreign policy he made an unnecessary blunder and declared that if the Syrian regime used chemical weapons it would be a “red line” that if crossed would draw United States military intervention. This statement along with his use of the same “red line” description for not allowing Iran to acquire nuclear weapons puts the credibility of the United States in question both with our friends and foes alike at a very dangerous time in the region. To do nothing makes us seem weak and to do something ineffectual or worse leading to unintended consequences such as starting a broader war in the region could be catastrophic.

The fact is that we have not intervened in the over two year civil war and to do so now would not be in our national security interests. Syria has been supported by the Soviet Union throughout the cold war and still is, as Russia has sent them arms to use in the fight against the insurgents. The facts are that our limited intervention as outlined by the White House will not change the strategic balance in the war. Assad’s forces have gained the upper hand after insurgent gains made by mostly Islamic militant fighters aligned and led by elements of Al Qaeda. This means that we would be facing a historically Russian ally with ties to Iran while supporting an Al Qaeda Islamist group, neither of which is in our interests.

The Syrian regime is financed by Iran and spreads arms to terrorist organizations in Lebanon and the Palestinian territories to Hezbollah and Hamas.  This has been true for many years and if we had been able to put together a coalition of moderate Syrian forces looking to bring liberty and arm them in the infancy of the insurgency then we may have been able to make a difference. We missed our opportunity and are left with no viable options outside of an all out invasion taking out the current regime, securing the weapons of mass destruction and trying to build a national consensus government in an area with no such history. The Middle East as it stands today is the haphazard partitioning of the Ottoman Empire after World War One which was the final defeat of the Muslim jihad that began in around 600 BC and led to the establishing of an Islamic Caliphate that spread from the Middle East to Africa and across most of Europe into Spain. What we are seeing now is the rise of Islamic power trying to once again conquer the lost lands and ultimately the whole world.

Our dilemma is if we do nothing we lose face in front of the whole world, emboldening our enemies and frightening our allies. However, given our current fiscal problems to launch a limited attack as outlined by the President with no reason to do so other than to save the President’s and the United States’ reputation is going to be a tough sell to the American people. The President knows there is nothing to be gained by his planned military action strategically and even more importantly politically here at home. His speech on Saturday seeking Congressional approval for a much more limited action than he began in Libya without seeking it then is nothing more than seeking political cover for his foreign policy failure. We should not be in this position where there is nothing to be gained and much could possibly be lost. It is another example of this President’s failed leadership.

The Congress will debate and vote on whether or not to authorize the limited use of force the President has planned. If they vote to not authorize the use of force the President said he still feels he has the authority to do so but the consequences will be his and his alone. If he fails to act America’s reputation will be irreparably harmed and the rise of radical Islam will be emboldened and Israel will be left feeling that they will have to strike at Iran alone before they can become a nuclear power. If they do authorize it and it turns out bad the President has political cover for the fallout if it leads to all out war in the Middle East.

 Unfortunately it will be up to the brave men and women of our Armed forces and the American taxpayers who are going to have to pay the consequences. The real national security issues would be if Syria was to fall and their weapons were to fall into the wrong hands, or Syria began smuggling chemical weapons and or advanced weaponry to Hamas and Hezbollah. The other is will Iran be allowed to become a nuclear power. Now with the specter of Iran on the horizon this situation grows exponentially in importance. None of this would have been necessary if it weren’t for the President’s political posturing and poor choice of words putting America’s reputation on the line when no national security interests were at stake

 

The Obama Administration and 9/11

Posted in Foreign Policy, Freedom of Speech, Politics, Religious Freedom with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 2, 2012 by authorcarloscardoso

The Democratic Convention was tremendous political theater for the American electorate. Speaker after speaker talking about American exceptionalism and then ending their speeches with God bless America. Perfectly choreographed as they told us that Osama Bin Laden was dead and for all intents and purposes so was Al Qaeda and the threat of terrorism , unfortunately none of this was true or indicative of their positions. This President toured the world apologizing for our arrogance in thinking that we were better than any other country. Through his words and his deeds he said we had no right to proclaim America was exceptional. This convention was run by this administration and it was no coincidence that the platform had no mention of God in it or recognition that Jerusalem was the capital of Israel. The charade fell apart when the media reported on these glaring omissions and they were forced to try and fix it by bringing it to a vote. The delegates were asked by voice vote three times looking for the required two thirds majority before the chair declared that the ayes had it and the language was inserted into the platform. The floor erupted in a loud chorus of boos as a two thirds majority had not agreed but the administration knew it had to embrace the platform change and forced it through.

Obama reached out to the Muslim world in his Cairo speech in 2009 going so far as to say we were a Muslim nation as well. He quoted “the holy Koran” several times and talked about his experience hearing the call to prayer in the morning on three continents and was now, “here, where Islam was revealed”. Eventually the cry for democracy began to fill the streets of the Middle East, beginning in Iran. The President was strangely silent as the protesters were jailed, beaten and killed and the Ayatollahs and President Ahmedinejad stayed in power. The so called Arab Spring then spread from Tunisia to Egypt where he sided with the protesters and called for a loyal United States ally to step down. President Mubarak was toppled giving rise to the Muslim Brotherhood gaining a majority in parliament and the election of President Morsi. We then intervened with Nato partners namely France and Germany in Libya in their civil war. This action was an undeclared war which is, by our Constitution, a power held by Congress. He sidestepped Congress and the War Powers Act by saying no ground troops were involved. This while hundreds of Tomahawk cruise missiles were fired from U.S. warships overstepping his Constitutional powers and shifting the balance of power to the rebels, toppling Ghaddafi

This leads us to September 11, 2012 where a regime led by President Morsi who we helped gain power watched and did nothing as protesters descended on our embassy in Cairo supposedly enraged that their prophet had been blasphemed in a relatively unknown YouTube video. Our government had 24 hour notice of the impending danger in Cairo and did nothing. So on September 11th we watched as our embassy was breached, our flag desecrated and replaced by an Al Qaeda flag. Thousands of protestors chanted Obama, Obama we are all Osamas. How did our government respond? They apologized and said the video had nothing to do with the United States government.

Meanwhile in Benghazi, Libya our consulate was attacked and set ablaze. Four Americans were killed including our ambassador who was brutally attacked, sodomized and dragged through the streets. He was a man who had been there throughout the conflict working with the rebels and this is how he was repaid. Our government immediately dismissed the notion that this was a terrorist attack insisting we were told, it was angry crowds reacting spontaneously to the insult to Islam. The Libyan transitional government called it a terrorist act and yet we had our U.N. Ambassador lie to us, the truth is our government was unprepared on September 11th and their weakness on foreign policy directly led to these attacks and Obama’s reaction reinforced his unwillingness to stand up and say the war on terror is ongoing. The President not only didn’t face the truth with the American people he showed indifference to the importance of this happening to us on this solemn day where we remember all that was lost in 2001. This President has failed the American people and sent a signal of weakness to the Middle East in his reaction to the violence committed against us on 9-11 of all days. He apologized to the Muslim world with a half hearted mention of our God given right of free speech while condeming the hate speech against Islam. Calling for responsible speech yet saying there is still no reason for acts of violence. This policy of apologizing for American insensitivites to Muslim feelings while he attacks the very tenets of many Christians with the power of coercive laws here at home is hypocritical and unconscionable. His actions speak louder than his words calling himself a Christian. The President in light of what happened decided to go to Las Vegas for a rally and fundraiser. His words at that rally in acknowledging just the beginning of what would spread to anti-American protests around the globe were a slap in the face of all Americans. He said and I quote,” Yesterday we had a tough day”. This weakness, apologizing and lack of indignation should be outrageous and unacceptable to us all.