When a wartime president is needed, American has a community organizer in the White House.
War presidents don’t quibble. They don’t leak. They don’t go AWOL. They aren’t dispirited or downbeat. They aren’t ambivalent about the mission. And most important of all, war presidents are never irresolute.
As the death toll in the Syrian civil war mounted, Obama opposed American intervention.
Then, in an offhand remark a year ago, he said his policy would change if the Assad regime crossed a “red line” and used chemical weapons.
Still, he ignored unsubstantiated reports of gas attacks that Secretary of State John Kerry said numbered in the “teens.” He decided to act only when American intelligence confirmed an estimated 1,400 people had been killed in a gas attack by the Syrian military on August 21.
He promised a bombing assault on Labor Day weekend to degrade Assad’s chemical arsenal.
That didn’t happen as Obama abruptly suddenly killed that plan and announced he would seek the approval of Congress.
So hesitation, delay, and unreliability are the hallmarks of Obama’s approach to Syria, for now.
This amounts to presidential “fecklessness,” says Steven F. Hayward, author of Greatness: Reagan, Churchill, and the Making of Extraordinary Leaders.
“A strong war leader needs one quality above others,” he says, “a ruthlessness to see it through, coupled with a touch of legerdemain to keep our enemies off balance and fearful of what the United States might do.”
Instead of a strong leader we have the same community organizer we elected not once but twice.