Remember the “Free Tibet” movement so trendy a few years ago? Haven’t heard much from them for awhile, have you? Did they achieve all their goals? Or was it a fad? Was it another case where the “compassionate and caring” leftists would “raise awareness” for an issue they neither understood nor truly cared about, only to drop it when the next issue takes its place.
What changed, all you “Free Tibet” supporters? Have they suddenly gained freedom? Does China now treat them fairly? Do you even know? Or could it be that the suffering people of Tibet you rallied around were just another social justice prop? Were they just a means to an end; proving to your knuckle-dragging neighbors that you are among the “compassionate enlightened”, while they are not?
Tibet isn’t the only such issue, of course. There are any number of trendy causes attracting elitist crowds only until they become passe. It seems the cause itself isn’t very important, but rather, being (publicly) identified with supporting it. We have a word for that: hypocrisy.
How strongly do you feel about your causes? And, how cheaply do you abandon your principles? Because that question leads us directly into current affairs.
Obama’s pathetic bungling of Syria brings the question into sharper focus. It’s about principles.
If Obama really believed that Syrian leadership was responsible for gassing civilians, and had to face direct American intervention for their atrocities, why pull punches, negotiate, compromise or backpedal from his “red line”? If he did not, why did he put himself and his nation in a position of weakness with stern words and no action?
“Speak loudly and carry a limp stick” is NOT an effective foreign policy. To all the world, it appears that Obama and Putin had a staring contest, and POTUS blinked first.
In one sense, the Syria situation really is “no big deal.” However badly things in Syria are handled, unless it escalates to involve other nations, the National Interest isn’t affected either way. Obama “lucked out” this time.
But what about next time? Will sabre-rattling without follow-through force future generations to war because Uncle Sam’s threat now rings hollow? What might that mean in terms of future “blood and treasure”? And what happens when national interests actually ARE at stake against a significant threat?
Suppose North Korea made good on its threats, and reignited their war that never ended, or say Chinese leadership were inclined to annex Japan? What if Russia made (another) move on Eastern Europe, or (much more probable) Israel faces direct military action from the Islamist regimes established by Obama’s beloved “Arab Spring”.
Russia and China have long worked at cross-purposes to Western interests, and those of their allies. Now they’ve seen how quickly we blink. What comfort can our allies take from that? Our foes?
Here’s what we’ve learned about President Barack “Peace-Prize” Obama so far. Besides having all the wisdom and discernment of a petulant child, he’s a people-pleaser. Worse, he’s trying to please the wrong people.
He thinks nothing of running roughshod over “his fellow Americans”, yet seeks to ingratiate himself to that fictional entity “the world community” — as though the rest of the world has any sort of unity. He tramples (easily and often) the legal boundaries limiting his own domestic authority, but values the insights of “global” bodies, even if they’re obviously corrupt and/or discredited.
He bullies and refuses to negotiate with elected officials in his own nation if their vision (or affiliation) dares to differ with his own, but will gladly “negotiate” with foreign entities known for their unreasonable and explicitly violent ambitions.
There is still another danger, one too seldom discussed.
Where would we be today if, back in 1940, Germany of Japan owned US foreign debt proportional to what China holds today? How could America have stood against moral outrages like Pearl Harbor or the Nazi death camps if they, quite literally, owned the American economy? Even if they had the will, they would lack the resources. Who knows? Political pressure to support the other side may have been overwhelming. After all, it was only after America was hit that they declared war.
Ted Cruz’s stand this week really matters. Not only because of the effects Obamascare has on the economy, medicine, and individual freedoms of American citizens. But also because of the debt-load. Whether or not Reagan actually won the Cold War by bankrupting the Russians, Obama’s (and, to a lesser extent, Dubya’s) runaway spending have put the West at serious disadvantage for any serious conflict in the future.
If the interest on US debt is — by itself — enough to sustain the entire Chinese military budget, what do you think Obama could do to help Tibet if they really needed it? Or Japan? Or South Korea? Or Israel?
How do you stand against a nation that owns you? “The borrower is servant to the lender”, right? The chains will first need to be cut. The real chains that will hinder both our conscience and will to act when needed consist of the National Debt itself. That debt may tie the hands of some future president to silently stand by as bad men do bad things to good people.
There is the true moral cost of the shiny trinkets Obama keeps hawking. They are eroding America’s real sovereignty.
Perhaps that’s why they gave Obama the same “Peace Prize” they awarded to the EU, the IPCC and Yassir Arafat.
Image: chap15; author: Mark Coggins from San Francisco, California, USA; Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license
Topics: Syria, China, Russia, National Sovereignty, National Debt