In the Wall Street Journal Bill McGurn writes, “Bush Was Right, Says Obama:”
This weekend, Americans were treated to something new: Barack Obama defending his war policies by suggesting they merely continue his predecessor’s practices. The defense is illuminating, not least for its implicit recognition that George W. Bush has more credibility on fighting terrorists than does the sitting president.
Mr. Obama’s explanation came in an interview with Katie Couric just before the Super Bowl. Ms. Couric asked about trying Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York. After listing some of the difficulties, the president offered a startling defense for civilian trials:
“I think that the most important thing for the public to understand,” he told Ms. Couric, “is we’re not handling any of these cases any different than the Bush administration handled them all through 9/11.” Mr. Obama went on to add that “190 folks”—folks presumably just like the mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks—had been tried and convicted in civilian court during Mr. Bush’s tenure.
Leave aside, for just a moment, the substance. Far more arresting is that Mr. Obama now defends himself by invoking a man he has spent the past year blaming for al Qaeda’s growth. You know—all those Niebuhrian speeches about how America had gone “off course,” “shown arrogance and been dismissive,” and “made decisions based on fear rather than foresight,” thus handing al Qaeda a valuable recruiting tool.
And the First Lady has gotten into the act as well, as William A. Jacobson of the Legal Insurrection blog notes:
Michelle Obama’s interview in which she complains about the treatment of her husband certainly is not a first in political history, but this statement really baffled me (emphasis mine):
“I think my husband has done a phenomenal job staying on course, looking his critics in the eye, coming up with clear solutions against staying the course,” Michelle Obama told Robin Roberts in an exclusive morning television interview on “Good Morning America.” “That’s what leadership is. But people have the right to criticize the president of the United States.”
Maybe the nuance is staying “on” course versus staying “the” course.
As the left attempts to go “Back to the Drawing Board”, who knew that this billboard was primarily addressing 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue?
Related: Michelle Malkin on “Things I don’t miss about George W. Bush.”
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