The president is starting to let his "inner progressive" come out when it comes to foreign policy, veteran Republican strategist Karl Rove says in a Wednesday column for The Wall Street Journal
, and his inner convictions are "startling and disturbing."
"This is a president who refuses to let the words 'radical Islam' (or a variation of that phrase) pass his lips," Rove said of President Barack Obama's strategies and statements as he enters the final two years of his presidency.
For example, said Rove, Obama on Feb. 1 told CNN's Fareed Zakaria that leaders must avoid the suggestion that terrorist networks like the Islamic State militants or al-Qaida are "are an existential threat to the United States or the world order."
Rove asks if Obama is "really blind" to the threat of the Islamic State (ISIS) destabilizing the Middle East, threatening Israel, damaging the international economy and increasing Islamic activity overseas.
Further, he points out that Rep. Michael McCaul,who chairs the House Committee on Homeland Security, has estimated there are some 5,000 terrorists with Western passports — from the United States, Canada, the European Union, Australia and New Zealand — who have ties to the Islamic State and are now fighting in Syria and Iraq.
"The threat from the rapidly expanding galaxy of Islamic terrorist groups is why 47% of the respondents in a Sept. 7, 2014, NBC/Wall Street Journal poll felt America is less safe than it was before 9/11," said Rove. "By comparison, 20% felt that way in September 2002."
Obama has also claimed to have ended two wars responsibly, said Rove, calling his words "delusional."
By leaving no forces in Iraq, the "stable situation" has turned into a disaster, said Rove, with ISIS being able to seize up to a third of Iraq, including the city of Mosul. And without a military presence, Obama's new "National Security Strategy" that targets counterterrorism operations won't work, Rove noted.
And in Afghanistan, where Obama wants troops to be removed
by the time he leaves the White House in early 2017, the Taliban and ISIS are fighting over control of southern part of the country, and Afghan troops and civilians are being killed.
"If the Taliban regains power, Afghanistan could again become a terror sanctuary as it was before 9/11 and further destabilize neighboring Pakistan, a nuclear power," said Rove. "No wonder the Afghan government is desperate for a residual U.S. military presence."
Just this week, Obama told Vox.com's Matthew Yglesias
that the media "overstates the level of alarm people should have about terrorism" and compared the fight against Islamism as being like that of a "big city" mayor fighting crime, said Rove.
Obama's description of the murder of Jews in the Paris terror scare last month as being an
instance in which "zealots" are randomly shooting "a bunch of folks" also makes it clear that he is not engaged in the war against terror and does not understand it, Rove wrote.
And comments Obama made during the National Prayer Breakfast, comparing Islamic terrorists with the Crusades and American slavery gave ISIS a powerful tool and stunned even the more liberal journalists, said Rove.
"It would have been impossible for presidents from Harry S Truman to George H.W. Bush to sustain public support for America’s Cold War efforts if they had been unwilling to call adversaries then by their true name — communists," Rove wrote.
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