Back in 2008, the foreign policy press corp of America ridiculed Sarah Palin for predicting that Barack Obama’s displays of weakness and softness would set the stage for a Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Blake Hounshell, then the left leaning editor of Foreign Policy and now Deputy Editor of Politico’s magazine, labeled the claim “strange.” After Hounshell’s 2008 article started circulating on twitter the other day, he tweeted sarcastically, “Yes, Twitter, Sarah Palin totally called this exact Ukraine scenario 6 years ago….”
Hounshell was not alone. The foreign policy press in D.C. leans to the left and is happy to ridicule Republican foreign policy pronouncements. In 2012, when Mitt Romney claimed Russia would be a strategic threat to the United States, the foreign policy press did fist pumps in the air with Barack Obama’s counter that the eighties wanted their foreign policy back.
Republican realism about the world and Barack Obama’s enabling of our enemies through his foreign policy naiveté, lack of seriousness, and kissy faces with our adversaries was just too much for the foreign and political press in Washington. Barack Obama, their precious, must be protected like Gollum holding onto his ring. Republicans must be ridiculed. They cannot predict or prophesy anything. After all, Mikhail Gorbachev won us the Cold War; Ronald Reagan just happened to accidentally be on the world stage at the time.
In case you thought I’m exaggerating, consider today the White House is claiming via their errand boy Mark Halperin, “President [Ronald] Reagan never faced a Soviet leader like this. This guy is ruthless.”
But the Democrats can predict everything and take credit for anything. We know that from 2007. That’s the year Charlie Wilson’s War came out. The Tom Hanks movie was a must see for the foreign policy press in D.C. They hailed Charlie Wilson as a hero and prophet. For the first few weeks the movie came out, the press corp in D.C. used Charlie Wilson to kick Ronald Reagan around, raise the specter of a resurgent terrorist regime once we got out of Afghanistan, and attacked George W. Bush.
The movie showed Charlie Wilson, not Ronald Reagan, coming up with the idea of arming the mujahideen in Afghanistan. The movie concluded with Wilson concerned about what would happen when we left Afghanistan to its own devices and the evil that could grow within. Because Reagan and George H. W. Bush had abandoned Afghanistan, the Taliban came to power, and the World Trade Center collapsed. It was all their fault and Charlie Wilson had predicted it all.
That is how the Washington press corp portrayed the film and Charlie Wilson. The World Trade Center collapsing was imminently foreseeable because of Republican foreign policy bungling and a refusal to listen to the great prophet Charlie Wilson.
But Sarah Palin? She’s no Charlie Wilson. She has an “R” next to her name.