Apologist in chief


It had to be the strangest comment ever made by an American commander in chief. In the middle of his Nuclear Security Summit last week, President Obama told ABC's George Stephanopoulos, "Whether we like it or not, we remain a dominant military superpower."

No other American president has ever taken such a frankly apologetic stance about American power. Whether we like it or not? These are the words of the first nuclear pacifist to sit in the White House. Not even the famously invertebrate Jimmy Carter was so willing to bow to the despots of the world while publicly wringing his hands over America's power and purpose.

During World War II, Germany and Russia doubled their war production, an amazing feat when you consider they were being bombed and invaded. Japan and Britain tripled their wartime production of arms. Even more remarkable

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But the United States of America expanded the production of war materiel 25-fold. America could launch merchant ships faster, literally faster, than Hitler's U-boats could sink them. That's why Franklin D. Roosevelt called the United States the great "Arsenal of Democracy." FDR was not apologetic about American power.

Throughout the Cold War, under Republicans and Democrats, the United States outpaced the ossified economic structures of the evil empire. Dedicating just a small fraction of our economy to military production, we nonetheless stayed ahead of the USSR. Under Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter's "hollowed out" military ended and we pulled ahead of the Russians so far and so fast that they collapsed economically in the attempt to keep up. Peace through strength was Reagan's motto. President Obama seems determined to fritter away everything Reagan won. Just ask the Poles.

The U.S. stance under Obama is wistful and regretful about American military strength. The president's much-ballyhooed Nuclear Security Summit will free us from the dreaded Swords of Damocles that were hanging over our heads. Those swords were held by Canada, Chile, and Ukraine. It seems the voluntary agreement by these nations to give us their fissile materials was the only concrete achievement of the 47-nation gabfest. Canada, Chile, Ukraine as rogue nuclear states? Who knew?

But on the more pressing threat of Iran getting a nuclear bomb, the Russians chose last week to announce they would be helping the world's No. 1 terror-exporting regime to launch a nuclear power plant. Could there be a more obvious affront to the United States, a blunter answer of nyet to Obama's bleating requests for help? And China agreed only to disagree, opting for more talk with Tehran rather than any meaningful sanctions whatsoever. All the administration's puffery about "crippling sanctions" and "sanctions that bite" has ended up crippling only us, biting only us.

The Nuclear Security Summit has added to our insecurity. It wasted precious time. It exposed the president's irresolution. It confirmed our drift. Is this administration trying to force Israel to take independent action against Iran? What alternative is it giving the Israelis?

Now comes President Obama's Entrepreneurship Summit with Muslims. Has the United States ever had a summit to encourage entrepreneurship with Catholic Poland? With Protestant Scandinavia? With the Jewish State of Israel? How can this be other than an unconstitutional "establishment of religion?" Where are the atheizers now?

Last fall, the Obama administration quietly announced a new initiative:

"The White House said the US Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) had issued a call for proposals for the fund, which will provide financing of between 25 and 150 million dollars for selected projects and funds.

"The Global Technology and Innovation Fund will 'catalyze and facilitate private sector investments' throughout Asia, the Middle East and Africa, the White House said in a statement."

How are these "projects" to be supervised? How are we to avoid excessive government entanglement with so-called "Shari'ah Compliant Financing?" What kind of guarantees do we have that zakat---the Muslim requirement for a percentage of all transactions to be donated to charity---will not actually go to funding Hamas, Hezbollah, and al-Qaeda?

It is most curious that the only entrepreneurs this president seems to be willing publicly to commend---other than those American big business execs who give liberally to the Democratic Party---are Muslim entrepreneurs. Will any of our new business partners allow any firms in Muslim-dominated regions to do business in Israel or with Israelis? Israel, after all, is the only truly entrepreneurial society in the Middle East.

Finally, what kind of background checks has been done on those who will attend the president's Entrepreneurship Summit with Muslims? We need information not just about the delegates themselves, but also their baggage handlers, halal chefs, interpreters, and security teams. Do we really know whom President Obama is inviting into our country?

Ken Blackwell
Ken Blackwell

Ken, a senior fellow at the Family Research Council, is the co-author of The Blueprint: Obama's Plan to Subvert the Constitution and Build an Imperial Presidency. Follow Ken on Twitter @kenblackwell.


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