Couldn't you just feeeel the emotion in the air during the speech that Obama gave last night? That air of excitement, the anticipation? Me neither.
He said some nice things about the troops, and he should have. That was the easy part. Beyond that, it was a dismal speech, one that you could tell he wasn't comfortable giving. Even his so-called "compliment" towards George W. Bush was as left-handed as could be. Look how Obama frames it:
...I’m mindful that the Iraq war has been a contentious issue at home. Here, too, it’s time to turn the page. This afternoon, I spoke to former President George W. Bush. It’s well known that he and I disagreed about the war from its outset. Yet no one can doubt President Bush’s support for our troops, or his love of country and commitment to our security. As I’ve said, there were patriots who supported this war, and patriots who opposed it. And all of us are united in appreciation for our servicemen and women, and our hopes for Iraqis’ future.
Is he kidding? Has he listened to his own supporters? They are the ones who have frequently expressed doubts about President Bush's support for our troops and love of country. Then there are those in his own party who, far from being "united in appreciation for our servicemen and women," did everything they could to undermine the whole effort. It was Fortney "Pete" Stark who said Bush was sending kids to Iraq to die and kill innocent people for the President's amusement. It was Harry Reid who declared the war was lost. It was John "François" Kerry who claimed American troops were stuck in Iraq because they were stupid people, and were running around committing all kinds of terrorist acts against Iraqis. Dick "Turban" Durbin referred to American troops as Nazis, Stalinists, and genocidal maniacs. And then there was the despicable and corrupt late Jack Murtha trying force murder convictions against his fellow Marines before any indictments had been handed down. This is what Obama thinks is being "united in appreciation for our servicemen and women"? Obama himself, as a U.S. Senator, did everything he could think of to undermine the surge that has led to the semblance of stability that Iraq now enjoys. While I don't believe he needed to say he was wrong about that opposition, he could have said a helluva lot more about how it succeeded. Nope. Couldn't do that.
Of course, Obama is still trying to claim this end of Operation Iraqi Freedom was all his idea:
So tonight, I am announcing that the American combat mission in Iraq has ended. Operation Iraqi Freedom is over, and the Iraqi people now have lead responsibility for the security of their country.
This was my pledge to the American people as a candidate for this office. Last February, I announced a plan that would bring our combat brigades out of Iraq, while redoubling our efforts to strengthen Iraq’s Security Forces and support its government and people.
Except it wasn't his plan; it was Bush's plan, the one Bush worked out with the Iraqi government. All Obama had to do was not screw it up. Amazingly, he didn't. But it wasn't his idea; naturally, Obama had to personally (and arrogantly) take credit for someone else's actions.
What really turned me against this speech was when Obama seemed to feel he had to throw a bone to the left and bash the previous administration:
Unfortunately, over the last decade, we’ve not done what’s necessary to shore up the foundations of our own prosperity. We spent a trillion dollars at war, often financed by borrowing from overseas.
What the hell does Obama know about shoring up "the foundations of our own prosperity"? He's been responsible, as a U.S. Senator and as President, for over $2 trillion in deficit spending over the last two and a half years that hasn't helped the economy one bit, as his own policies are keeping businesses from hiring. I think Ace sums it up best [emphasis from original]:
Ah, here we go. Back to the Jesse Jackson paradigm. $12 trillion spent on war (???), need to shore up the middle class with all this War Money we've been spending.
Basically blaming his current economic mismanagement on Bush's decisions on war seven and a half years ago.
Is this dirtbag really using an opportunity to thank the troops as a campaign commercial for his failed economic policies? I think he is.
This wasn't his best speech. Obviously. But I thought Obama's "race" speech back in 2008 was a dismal failure while so many were "ooh-ing" and "ah-ing" and falling all over themselves to compliment it. Same thing with his inauguration address as Obama vomited up lie after lie after lie. With his speech last night, it wasn't so much that he lied, but that it wasn't anything.
Obama did actually mention victory towards the end:
In an age without surrender ceremonies, we must earn victory through the success of our partners and the strength of our own nation.
But even here, it's more of an afterthought. All Obama wanted was to get the government out of Iraq so that he could push his left-wing agenda, that the American people don't want, down our throats. Our troops earned a victory. They deserved better from the Commander in Chief.
Yeah, I'm critical. Maybe overly so. But I do it because the American people deserve a better President than what we have now, a President who puts his hissy fit with Arizona into a statement about "human rights" to a group of mindless pansies and real human rights violators, a President who has constantly criticized and apologized for America's supposed "wrongs" against Muslims without mentioning all the help we have provided Muslims throughout the world, a President who stays in campaign mode to cover up his own incompetence. Yeah, I'm critical. This President has earned it.