Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, offered up some scathing commentary on President Obama’s speech from Hiroshima, made Friday as America headed into Memorial Day weekend, saying the White House chief took advantage of his globally watched podium to slam Harry Truman for his role in dropping atomic bombs over Japan – decisions that hastened the end of World War II.
“I think the president’s other remarks, where he said the scientific revolution that brought us the splitting of the atom should have brought us a ‘moral revolution’ as well, is a not-too-thinly veiled attack on Harry Truman, whose morals apparently didn’t quite make it up to Barack Obama’s high standards,” Bolton said, during an interview on Breitbart News Daily in the aftermath of Obama’s speech.
Bolton also said, during the interview: “This is a typically subtle Obama speech in many respects, but make no mistake, it is the next stage, maybe the last act, of his apology tour.”
Bolton also took offense with Obama’s recitation of the reasons to go to war, and his apparent forgetfulness of one basic justification – that of self-defense.
“He listed in this speech several causes of war,” Bolton said, Breitbart reported. “One of them that he did not list was self-defense, which was why we were in World War II to begin with. I think when you look at what he said overall, it’s a criticism of the United States. Maybe he doesn’t use the phrase ‘I apologize,’ but it’s certainly a confession of error, in his view.”
And Bolton wrapped: “Mr. High-Minded Obama doesn’t say what he would have done differently than what Harry Truman did, faced with the choice Harry Truman was faced with. This is just typical of Obama. He lives in an ideological world that has little or nothing to do with American reality.”
Bolton’s comments follow Obama’s historic speech from Hiroshima, in which he described the U.S. atomic bombing of the area in August, 1945, as the day “death fell from the sky,” calling for a global reduction in nuclear stockpiles from the perch of his Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum podium, which he shared with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
Obama didn’t outright apologize for then-president Truman’s decision to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki – a move many historians cite as a life-saving measure that actually sped the end of World War II. But as the first sitting president to visit Hiroshima, where 140,000 were killed during an Aug. 6 bombing that basically ushered in the nuclear age, Obama’s presence spoke volumes.
“We stand here in the middle of this city and force ourselves to imagine the moment the bomb fell,” Obama said. “We listen to a silent cry … their souls speak to us.”
Obama also said the bombing of Hiroshima “demonstrated that mankind possessed the means to destroy itself,” Fox News reported.
And he waxed poetic: NBC News said Obama spoke of the day “death fell from the sky and the world was changed,” and a “wall of fire destroyed a city.”
He then spoke of the “shared responsibility to look directly into the eye of history and ask what we must do differently to cub such suffering again,” and added: “We are not bound by genetic code to repeat mistakes of the past. We can learn.”
Obama, in the museum’s guest book, penned: “We have known the agony of war. Let us now find the courage, together, to spread peace, and pursue a world without nuclear weapons,” NBC News reported.
Obama, right before his speech, laid a wreath by the base of the arched monument at the memorial, closing his eyes and bowing his head for a time, Fox News reported.
Only former president Jimmy Carter has previously visited Hiroshima. But Carter toured the site in 1984, four years after leaving the White House.