Nothing has been more amusing to me lately than watching various liberals fall all over themselves to defend State Department Spokeswoman Marie Harf’s remarks that the best way to combat ISIS is with a jobs program. This fairly typical response indicates not only the fact that the defense is taking place, but also that it tends to be quite vociferous, laced with bad grammar and contempt for any who might actually disagree with what should be a self-evident statement:
To those who mock Obama’s proposal to create jobs to dissuade people from joining ISIS either are clueless or working with ISIS
— Dean Obeidallah (@Deanofcomedy) February 19, 2015
Give the hacks at Media Matters some credit – they at least noticed that what Marie Harf said is literally the exact same thing George W. Bush said we were going to do in Iraq to stamp out terrorism there in the first place. In fact, Bush said over and over again that one of the primary reasons we were going into Iraq was to stop terrorism by bringing the Iraqi people freedom and prosperity.
The problem, as it turns out, is that this tactic did not work. I guess you could quibble and point out that Obama’s precipitous withdrawal and feckless handling of the post-surge Iraqi environment caused at least part (or all) of the problem, but according to Democrats, the experiment had failed long before Obama even took office. Obama himself in 2008 said that this tactic had failed to quell terrorism in Iraq or make America less safe. Ditto Hillary Clinton. I could go on and on for hours digging up speeches lampooning the naivete of George W. Bush for thinking that he could make the terrorists stop being terrorists by giving them jobs and freedom.
Say whatever you will about Bush’s vision for Iraq and whether he should have foreseen that it would fail. At least, at the time he engaged upon the strategy, it had the virtue of having not yet been tried. Leave it to Democrats to now defend this strategy after it has failed and furthermore after they have spent over a decade complaining on the record that it should never have been tried.
Of course, the Democrats don’t really believe this, inasmuch as they don’t believe anything of conviction with respect to foreign policy. They are merely saying it aloud because they are reflexively incapable of refusing to defend anything the Obama administration does, even though Obama is term limited and the statement in question fell out of the mouth of the Lucy and Ethel duo that have been systematically (and probably purposefully) embarrassing the State Department since their arrival. It does not matter – if Obama (or even one of Obama’s low-level flunkies) wants them to be neocons, then neocons they shall be.
And if you wanted people who were capable of a coherent view of foreign policy, you shouldn’t have voted to put Democrats in charge.