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Overseas Contingency Operations and Such

Here was Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey on the aftermath of the Fort Hood shootings: “Our diversity, not only in our Army, but in our country, is a strength. And as horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that’s worse.” What a tragedy that would be -- no more incompetent, but deadly, Major Hasans fast-tracked to major.

Here was Director of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano: “In my speech, although I did not use the word 'terrorism,' I referred to ‘man-caused’ disasters. That is perhaps only a nuance, but it demonstrates that we want to move away from the politics of fear toward a policy of being prepared for all risks that can occur.” Actually, Ms. Napolitano, your invention is not a “nuance” but an embarrassment. Worrying about the Tsarnaevs or Major Hasan or the bombers in Peshawar is not “the politics of fear.”

Here was a memo from the Office of Management and the Budget to the Pentagon: “This administration prefers to avoid using the term 'Long War' or 'Global War on Terror' [GWOT.] Please use ‘Overseas Contingency Operation.’” Do overseas contingency operations respond to man-caused disasters or to workplace violence?

Here was President Barack Obama on various occasions: “America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles of justice and progress, tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.” And, “Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism – it is an important part of promoting peace.”  Where do Islam and the West actually compete -- Caltech versus what Islamic university? iPhones versus what? Brain surgery at Cairo University compared to the Stanford neurology department?

The point is not that these therapeutic musings are necessarily always completely false, but rather why are they voiced at all, given their banality and half-truths.

There are many more examples of such politically correct naiveté. For some reason, Obama’s rare platitudinous quotes about Christianity are not nearly so complimentary. He speaks more harshly about his conservative critics than he does about the Muslim Brotherhood or the Iranian theocracy. His interview with al Arabiya and various UN addresses explain why so many of his obsequious subordinates want to outdo their president in reconfiguring contemporary Islam. In his Cairo speech, Obama fabricated all sorts of stories about the glorious tolerance and brilliance of Islam, with invited Muslim Brotherhood attendees nodding in agreement.