July 25, 2008


Obama Sings the Song of Himself: A flat performance in Berlin. (John F. Cullinan, 7/25/08, National Review)

As always, there’s no lack of self-regard: “Now the world will watch and remember what we do here — what we do with this moment.” But there’s a complete absence of irony in a phrase that unconsciously recalls Lincoln’s modest prediction that “the world will little note or long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they” — the honored dead — “did here.”

If Senator Obama were a Republican wouldn't we be subjected to learned--though thoroughly conjectural--analyses of his "narcicisstic personality disorder" from psychiatrists?

You know, like the ones accusing George W. Bush of being insane for ordering the Surge, which the Left now claims it knew all along would succeed, or even for toppling the genocidal dictator in the first place.

Pride (in the Name of Love): The Obama vision thing. (Kathleen Parker, 7/25/08, National Review)

Why is it so hard for Obama, knowing what he knows now, to say that he should have supported the surge?

To review Obama’s statements on the surge since it began is to understand why: pride.

Over and over again — even after Gen. David Petraeus reported in late 2007 that the surge was working — Obama said: It’s not working. It won’t work. It’s a mistake. He essentially was betting his presidential hopes on the surge’s failure.

But the surge did work — and the mistake is Obama’s.

Most Americans would have little trouble forgiving Obama for not believing the surge would be effective. It was a gamble, as are all strategies in war. Even with reports on the ground that locals seemed increasingly willing to rise up, there was reason enough by 2007 to doubt the wisdom of America’s commander in chief.

It is less easy to forgive the kind of wrongheaded stubbornness now on display. As recently as July 14, Obama wrote in a New York Times oped that “the same factors that led me to oppose the surge still hold true.” He mentioned the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan, money spent in Iraq and said that the surge had failed to produce “political accommodation.”

Fine. But the larger, more important point is that the surge was necessary and successful. Those facts outweigh all other considerations past and present. Moreover, a recent U.S. embassy report stated that 15 of 18 benchmarks set by Congress for Iraq are being met in a “satisfactory” fashion.

Obama has fallen to pride in part because he has bought his own myth. By staking his future on a past of supernatural vision, he has made it difficult to admit human fault. The magic isn’t working anymore. And Obama, the visionary one, can’t even see what everyone else sees: He was wrong.

Posted by Orrin Judd at July 25, 2008 6:37 AM
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