There’s never been a better time to be an enemy of the United States of America. Whether you’re a trained jihadist in US custody, a diminutive cult leader starving his own people while developing nukes, or part of a ruthless regime that murders dissidents in broad daylight, you can rest assured that the United States government is unlikely to act—or perhaps even speak—in a manner likely to disrupt your daily routine. While invoking “our values,” hailing the importance of American humility, and rejecting the “failed policies of the past,” the current administration is projecting a dangerous image to the world. This approach may be extolled as cautious pragmatism on the Beltway cocktail party circuit, but it’s most assuredly perceived as something entirely different by America’s current and emerging adversaries around the globe: Weakness.
Within days of assuming office, President Obama ostentatiously announced his intention to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility within one year. That his administration had no workable plan to do so was beside the point; details were not about to obstruct the path to Hopenchange. Obama has since been thrashed by former Vice President Cheney in a public debate on this matter, and public opinion polls are trending decisively against his rushed and irresponsible decision.
Nevertheless, to avoid allowing a campaign promise to go by the wayside—while (quietly) adopting yet another staple of the previous administration's supposed failures—Obama has been working hard to relocate Gitmo detainees. He first floated the idea of releasing some of the supposedly least threatening blokes, Chinese Uighurs, onto US soil, where they’d be supported with welfare checks. His own party was so receptive to that lead balloon that they voted down funding to close the prison altogether. Obama then went knocking at the collective door of the same “international community” that had decried the facility’s very existence for years. Strangely, none of those nations were especially keen on welcoming radical Islamists onto their streets. After being rebuffed more than 100 times, the president finally identified two takers; the island paradises of Bermuda and Palau.
Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson. He is co-authors with Mary Katharine Ham for their new book End of Discussion: How the Left's Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes America Less Free (and Fun).
Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography