The well-intentioned hosts of MSNBC’s news programs were right to point out the difference between the atmosphere at the Republican and Democratic Conventions: the former, angry and bellicose, the latter exuberant and dedicated.
But just as the Republicans passed over in silence the war in Afghanistan, the Democrats behaved as though the man they were supporting had no such thing as a kill list; that authorizes the assassination of American citizdens without trial had not taken unto himself full power over all means of communication in the event of a ‘national security emergency’ (http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/07/06/executive-order-assignment-national-security-and-emergency-preparedness); supported Israel’s bellicose stance vis a vis a country that has never started a war, countenanced the rise of private prisons and privatized education – and promised that the United States would never lose its status Uber Alles.
Confronted with the evidence that it is too late for the United States to undo the damage it has wrought around the world – damage brought on by his predecessors - and unable to impose a new ethos on his masters, President Obama has closed his eyes and driven full speed into deeper conflicts: a desperate attempt to control the Middle East in the face of popular opposition – all the more determined that it comes after decades of resignation – and as if that were not enough, picking up the Chinese gauntlet by sending Marines to Australia and conducting exercises in the South China Sea.
Obama’s Middle East policy harks all the way back to Franklin Roosevelt. But he alone will own his Pacific policy, and it will be doomed because unlike Roosevelt, he will be unable to justify it by a domestic policy of freedom from fear and freedom from want.