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The green-screen president
Posted By Jane Chastain On 09/26/2012 @ 7:05 pm In Commentary,Opinion | No Comments
The average moviegoer is ill-equipped to tell the difference between live-action filmed on location and that which is created in the air-conditioned comfort and safe environment of a film studio. In such an environment, there is no danger. The attacking forces or impending peril is simply projected on a green screen behind the actors whose movements are carefully choreographed by a script.
That was the vision that came to mind Tuesday when our president was escorted to a podium in the safe confines of the United Nations’ building in New York to give an address against the familiar backdrop of its green marble wall.
In the two weeks prior, the United States suffered two carefully planned terrorist attacks, one on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, resulting in the brutal murder of the American ambassador and three others. The second attack was at Camp Bastion in southern Afghanistan which killed two Marines and destroyed eight of our warplanes. The loss of the planes, valued at more than $500 million, was the worst since the Vietnam Tet offensive 44 years ago.
Violent protests have been waged across the Middle East and Asia against U.S. embassies and other Western targets in more than 20 countries with large Muslim populations, with the participants shouting, “Death to America.” However, the president, the central actor in this real-life drama, has virtually isolated himself from the press and world leaders with the exception of this one, brief, carefully choreographed appearance before the U.N. General Assembly.
Far from a triumph, it appeared our hero didn’t get the script update and was married to an outdated version on the teleprompter. While the attack in Benghazi has been (belatedly) declared a “terrorist attack” and the Taliban brazenly published a video showing the preparations for the carnage at Camp Bastion, our esteemed leader used the word “terrorist” only once, and it was not in connection with the aforementioned attacks against our country.
In his 40 minute soliloquy, Obama did not utter the words “terrorism” or “terrorist attack” one time. Were they just too harsh for his constitution?
Like a helpless thespian, who could not unlearn a previously memorized script, he relied on words like “violence” and “intolerance” to describe the events of the previous weeks.
And what perpetrated all this meanness that was flung in our direction? The infamous YouTube video of a trailer for a film no one has seen. I counted 15 references to the video or its artful equivalents “slander” and “hateful speech.”
Obama was but a pathetic caricature of a world leader at the United Nations. As Shakespeare put it in Macbeth, “a poor player who struts and frets his hour upon the stage,” impressing no one who has been paying attention to these devastating current events.
In the abstract, it was a beautiful speech, careful crafted by a gifted writer and artfully delivered by this president. However, the essence of what Obama really believes slipped out, in what may have been an off-the-cuff comment.
Somewhere between his seventh and eighth reference to “the video” he said this: “I know that not all countries in this body share this particular understanding of the protection of free speech.” Then he added, “We recognize that.” It is as if our democratic republic, based upon the worth and freedom of each and every individual, is somehow the equivalent of an extremist dictatorship.
Then our president went back to the script as he waxed eloquently about the Arab world moving toward democracy and how most Muslims are peaceful and want the same things we want.
Obama went on, “The war in Iraq is over. American troops have come home. We’ve begun a transition in Afghanistan, and America and our allies will end our war on schedule in 2014.”
Most Muslims are peaceful, but they are not stupid. They know that Obama stood by and did nothing in Iran when those peaceful protesters were being crushed in the street by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. They know that he has done nothing to help the Syrian people who are struggling to survive under Bashar al-Assad. The Muslims in the Arab world know who will rule them when we get out of Dodge, and it will not be a democratic leader … and it will not be pretty. That is why they will never stand up to the terrorists who are attacking us while Barack Obama is president.
This poor actor will not inspire them to “do the right thing” with his outdated script and empty words. He needs to be booted off the stage and out of office.
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