On Tuesday, the Islamic State released a slickly produced video of their beheading of American journalist Steve Sotloff. IS terrorists ended the 31-year-old’s life by beheading him. In the video, IS taunts President Obama and blames him for the killing.
President Obama’s reaction to the second IS beheading of an American in the span of about a week is curious, to say the least.
“We will not be intimidated,” he said, indicated some level of intimidation.
He continued: “”We know that if we are joined by the international community, we can continue to shrink ISILl’s sphere of influence, its effectiveness, its financing, its military capabilities to the point where it is a manageable problem.”
A “manageable problem.”
In other words, the Islamic State gets to go on existing as long as it’s “manageable.”
Where is the declaration that the Islamic State must be destroyed? Where is the declaration that anyone who harms Americans will pay with their lives? Where is the strength and decisiveness? Where is Obama’s responsibility to be commander-in-chief and protect the American people?
It’s not in Obama’s prepared remarks. After expressing his desire that the Islamic State become a “manageable problem,” he continued:
“And the question is going to be making sure we’ve got the right strategy but also making sure we’ve got the international will to do it. This is something that is a continuation of a problem we’ve seen certainly since 9/11, but before and it continues to metastasize in different ways. And what we’ve got to do is make sure that we are organizing the Arab world, the Middle East, the Muslim world, along with the internationl community to isolate this cancer.”
As the leader of the free world, President Obama’s responsibility is not to hope that there is international will to destroy IS. His responsibility is to marshal that will and build the coalition that it will take to win.
But this president expresses a strange desire not to win wars. He promised in 2008 not to win the war in Iraq, but to end it. He ended it by pulling American troops out prematurely. The Islamic State’s rise is a direct result of that.
Obama seemed satisfied declaring that “al Qaeda is on the run” during the 2012 election. Not that they were beaten or had been destroyed; merely that killing Osama bin Laden had put “core al Qaeda” “on the run.”
Now Obama declares that he intends to make the Islamic State, which occupies territory the size of Great Britain and is a growing global threat, a “manageable problem.”
That won’t do. This president cannot manage the Texas-Mexico border. We need a president who understands that Islamic State will never be a “manageable problem.” It has to be destroyed. In the words of Ronald Reagan, the strategy against the Islamic State must be “We win, and they lose.”