Answer: Obama cannot, because at heart he buys into the anti-American narrative that ours is a deplorable history -- of genocide against the Indians, of slavery and segregation, of robbing Mexicans of their land and of disrespecting our Latin neighbors.
Obama is determined to make the requisite apologies to show the world he does not condone the sins our fathers committed.
Thus, as Nile Gardiner of the Heritage Foundation has cataloged, Obama has apologized to Europe for our having "shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive." He apologized to Latin America for our having been "disengaged and at times ... sought to dictate."He told the Turks that we are "working through our own darker periods in our history. ... Our nation still struggles with the legacy of slavery and segregation, the past treatment of Native Americans."
Obama, however, did not ask the Turks to confess to their own "darker periods," which might have taken some time.
Obama is the anti-Reagan. Where Reagan ever spoke of the greatness and glory of America, her history and heroes, her capacity to make the world all over again, Obama is like a dismal parson, forever reminding us -- and everyone within earshot -- of our own and our fathers' sins.
Obama is not only demoralizing Middle America, he is driving away the God-and-country patriots who are sick of hearing this rot from professors and journalists, and prefer not to hear it from their president. He is ceding moral high ground to regimes and nations that do not deserve it.
If Obama believes he can build himself up by tearing America down, he is mistaken. Cynical foreigners will view it with snickering contempt, patriotic Americans with disgust. What kind of leader is it who talks down his own country on foreign soil?
America's performance in the Cold War was hardly flawless. But does anyone deny that we were on the right side, that the Soviet Empire and Mao's China and communist Vietnam and Castro's Cuba were on the side of tyranny -- and that the neutrals were by and large irrelevant or worse in that great cause?
A nation is an extended family. While families fight and quarrel, often bitterly, you do not take the family quarrel outside the family.
You don't hang the family's dirty linen on the communal clothesline.
Obama, however -- like some Hollywood actress seeking sympathy and public approbation with her tell-all biography detailing how she was abused by her father -- trolls for popularity with America's adversaries by reciting for the benefit of the world all the sins his country has allegedly committed.
When did this become the duty of the president of the United States?