Ed Driscoll

Of Emperors And New Clothes

Warner Todd Huston of Newsbusters finds a quote from President Obama that instantly sums up both the president’s view of  American exceptionalism and 20th century history in general:

“I’m always worried about using the word ‘victory,’ because, you know, it invokes this notion of Emperor Hirohito coming down and signing a surrender to MacArthur,” Obama told ABC News.

And this was bad…how?

Huston writes:

It is telling that when Barack Obama pictures “victory” he doesn’t see in his head that famous photo of the U.S. Sailor kissing the pretty girl in Times Square on Victory Day. Instead, what is immediately conjured up in Obama’s mind is the bedraggled figure of a beaten Japanese Emperor groveling at the feet of U.S. military might.

Obama’s sympathy seems to be with the Emperor that governed a nation that tried to viciously take over the entire Pacific Rim and enslave many millions of Asian peoples. It is hard to escape the feeling that Obama’s first thought when the word “victory” is broached is of our enemy, his sympathies with them, not us.

But that isn’t even the worst of it. Once again we see another example of Obama’s ignorance of history, even American history. In fact, Emperor Hirohito didn’t even sign the document that finalized the surrender of Japan to General MacArthur. That duty was performed by Japan’s Foreign Minister, Mamoru Shigemitsu, and one of its generals, Yoshijir Mumezu.

In fact, we didn’t destroy Japan’s Emperor, rather we allowed him to continue on in a ceremonial role to allow the Japanese to feel as if they hadn’t been entirely crushed and that some of their traditions might live on.

So, once again, Obama garbles history, disrespects his own country, and sets us up to be discounted as a viable force by foreign nations. Obama’s discounting of “victory” in Afghanistan is dangerous news for our troops. It signals a man that will not give our troops the support they need to win the war and come home with our pride and safety intact.

Now, will the Old Media realize this disastrous view of history, warfare and our national security? Or will the Old Media just move on as if nothing happened?

My money — and perhaps yours as well — is on the latter, as an analogy involving another historic emperor and his defeat comes to mind:

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Update: “‘Student Of History’ Obama Fumbles Japanese Surrender”, Jim Hoft notes.

Update: And John McCain — Vice Admiral John S. McCain — was at the surrender as well; and died four days afterward, exhausted from the war, at age 61. “Admiral McCain’s grandson would have got that one right, which might be part of the reason the President would prefer not to invoke it”, Greyhawk of the Mudville Gazette adds.

And as others have noted, The Won isn’t above a little victory gloating of his own, in his Bizarro World Clausewitz inversion of politics as warfare by other means.