Throughout the presidency of George W. Bush, the Left savaged him as a big dummy. They mercilessly attacked and mocked him as an incompetent boob, a stupid idiot, an inept, unread, uncurious doofus.
All of those smears were grossly unfair to President Bush, of course, who had more natural leadership skills, better instincts, and a more fundamental understanding of America’s power and place in the world and how to advance them in his big toe than President Obama will ever have. Ever.
But Obama’s big selling point in 2008, apart from that flimsy notion of “change,” was that he would be the anti-Bush. He would do the exact opposite of everything Bush did, because everthing Bush did was oh-so-wrong. Obama suggested two things: 1. He was so much smarter than Bush that he’d NEVER make the same mistakes, and 2. He’d watched Bush’s presidency and actually LEARNED from those mistakes. Enough people bought that particular line of BS that Obama won and the rest is, shall we say, bad history.
With regard to Obama’s order for US military intervention in the Libyan “kinetic military action,” let’s see how much he has learned from Bush’s so-called “mistakes” in Iraq:
Bush was attacked for the following:
1. Invoking the doctrine of pre-emptive war, when Saddam Hussein had not directly attacked us.
Obama and Libya: Obama claims we are intervening to prevent a major slaughter…BEFORE it actually happened and while Muammar Qaddafi had not attacked us.
2. That Bush “rushed to war,” despite the fact that he had spent months engaged in diplomatic negotiation.
Obama and Libya: Three weeks of hemming and hawing, then wham, bam, thank you, ma’am, we’re engaged in a shooting war in Libya.
3. That Bush went ahead in Iraq despite Colin Powell’s warning: “you break it, you own it.”
Obama and Libya: He broke it, he owns it.
4. That Bush didn’t consult enough with Congress, despite months of endless consultations and debates there.
Obama and Libya: Obama not only didn’t consult with Congress, he sprung his decision on Congressional leaders before the first military action began. There was no invitation to discussion. Obama told them of his decision, and then invited them to leave. He continues to blow off Congress.
5. That Bush was led around by Dick Cheney.
Obama and Libya: He’s being led around by Hillary Clinton.
6. That Bush’s military action in Iraq unleashed unforeseen and uncontrollable terrorist forces.
Obama and Libya: Obama’s military action has unleashed unforeseen and uncontrollable terrorist forces.
7. That Bush went to war in the wrong place. He should have gone after the big enemy, Iran, instead of Iraq.
Obama and Libya: He went to war in the wrong place. He should be focused on the need for possible intervention in places far more strategically important: Iran, Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, Jordan.
8. That Bush had no exit strategy, despite the fact that announcing one tips the advantage to the enemy.
Obama and Libya: He announced multiple and contradictory exit strategies, including turning the mission over to NATO, no use of ground troops, and being for Qaddafi’s exit before he was against it.
9. That Bush opened a big can of worms by cracking open Iraq.
Obama and Libya: Obama’s actions have opened an even bigger can of worms across the Middle East: the Muslim Brotherhood is running the show in Egypt and elsewhere, and al Qaeda is poised to gain a new base of operations in Libya.
10. That Bush declared “Mission Accomplished” prematurely.
Obama and Libya: Last night, he declared that the mission was being turned over to NATO forthwith, and the US’s main work here is done. Oh, really?
The comparisons are almost….eerie. Especially for a president who is so obsessed with being the anti-Bush that he contorts himself into policy pretzels, has marginalized himself and his presidency, and has severely damaged American power and credibility.
I thought Obama was supposed to be so smart. I thought he was supposed to be so much smarter than Bush. I thought Obama was supposed to have learned from Bush’s so-called “mistakes”….the same “mistakes” that he pounded Bush for for nearly eight years.
And yet….Obama seems to be repeating them. That must mean that Bush was right. Or that Obama is the big dummy.
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