“This is a fundamental culture clash. Team Obama and its base cannot comprehend the values still cherished by those young Americans “so dumb” they joined the Army instead of going to prep school and then to Harvard. Values such as duty, honor, country, physical courage, and loyalty to your brothers and sisters in arms have no place in Obama World.’
–—Ralph Peters, a retired army officer and former enlisted man, in the National Review, explaining how it could be that Obama and his advisors actually believed that trading five Taliban terrorists for a likely deserter would bring such universal accalim that the VA scandal would be forgotten and forgiven.
This isn’t even the most memorable quote in Peters’ acid take-down of President Obama and his narrow, politically-stunted staff, especially Susan Rice, and their mad, insulting conduct. That would be this:
“Both President Obama and Ms. Rice seem to think that the crime of desertion in wartime is kind of like skipping class. They have no idea of how great a sin desertion in the face of the enemy is to those in our military. The only worse sin is to side actively with the enemy and kill your brothers in arms. This is not sleeping in on Monday morning and ducking Gender Studies 101.”
Or maybe this…
“In one of the most tone-deaf statements in White House history (we’re making a lot of history here), the national-security advisor, on a Sunday talk show, described Bergdahl as having served “with honor and distinction.” Those serving in uniform and those of us who served previously were already stirred up, but that jaw-dropper drove us into jihad mode. But pity Ms. Rice. Like the president she serves, she’s a victim of her class. Nobody in the inner circle of Team Obama has served in uniform. It shows. That bit about serving with “honor and distinction” is the sort of perfunctory catch-phrase politicians briefly don as electoral armor. (“At this point in your speech, ma’am, devote one sentence to how much you honor the troops.”) I actually believe that Ms. Rice was kind of sincere, in her spectacularly oblivious way. In the best Manchurian Candidate manner, she said what she had been programmed to say by her political culture, then she was blindsided by the firestorm she ignited by scratching two flinty words together. At least she didn’t blame Bergdahl’s desertion on a video.”
Read the whole piece: it is a contemptuous essay, but an accurate and fair one.
[Aside: I wish my friend Ethics Bob would weigh in on this, as a former military man, ethics expert, and individual of integrity. He seems to have suspended his excellent blog (the last post was in July), but maybe this issue will flush him out. As a loyal Democrat, he has shown the President a lot of patience and been willing to extend the benefit of the doubt, and manfully debated my dire assessement of his leadership abilities and competence, both on Ethisc Alarms, and over a lovely dinner. I would be stunned if he defends this, however. And I would be interested if he finally concedes, as the President’s enablers and stubborn supporters have refused to do, that this incident isn’t an aberration or a mistake, but simply the natural, predictable ( I predicted it, so I can say that with confidence) ineptitude of a poor leader who found himself, tragically, in a job he had no skills to fill competently, and lacked the self-awareness and humility to appoint advisors who could help him.]
Source: National Review