President Barack Obama brings to mind the old joke about Israel’s airline, ELAL.
In the old days, people complained that E-L-A-L stood for “every landing always late.”
Today, ELAL usually flies on time, but the president who often speaks of “teachable moments” has shown himself a slow learner: E-L-A-L—“each lesson always late.”
When it comes to Muslim terrorists or other problems in the Middle East, President Obama is a very slow learner, and each “teachable moment” becomes an eternity as Obama argues with or ignores the facts:
- For two years, Obama largely waved off the problem of Islamic terrorists in Syria and Iraq knocking off major cities like dominoes, and he began to focus on the problem after broadcasts of beheadings of Americans by the terrorists;
- Three years ago, President Obama blithely dismissed the view of US generals who said the US had to keep some forces in Iraq to prevent a vacuum that would be filled by terrorists and by Iranian influence. Even though the generals were proven right, Obama refuses to admit it;
- A Muslim terrorist murdered 13 people at the Fort Hood army base in 2009, as he yelled “Allah is Great,” but Obama still calls the attack “workplace violence;”
- Despite the fact that the Muslim Brotherhood is the godfather of Al-Qaeda and other Sunni terror groups such as ISIL/ISIS (The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant), Obama insisted on dealing with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and opposing the Egyptian army leaders who wanted to depose them, even denying aid to the anti-terror military;
- Obama believed that there was a good chance to make friends with bloodthirsty Syrian leader Bashar Assad, and he sent an ambassador there—against the strong objections of Congress, but within months the Assad regime had begun killing thousands of its own citizens;
- The President set forth “red lines” against Syrian use of weapons of mass destruction, but when the Syrians ignored him, he believed that he could trust the assurances of Vladimir Putin—a well-known Russian peacemaker—that Syria would eventually destroy its own weapons;
- When US intelligence and diplomats warned Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that terrorists aimed to attack US officials in Libya, Obama-Clinton again went into “denial of reality” mode, believing there was no threat, not doing their homework and subsequently covering up the truth.
- When President Obama came into office, he demanded an Israeli freeze of housing construction in Jerusalem and the West Bank, assuming “settlements” were the “obstacle to peace,” but he actually succeeded in causing the most complete freeze in Israeli-Arab negotiations in 20 years, and the Palestinians escalated their military and diplomatic attacks on Israel.
- When President Obama took office, he hoped to use his personal charm and rapport with Islam to win over Islamist Turkey and Islamist Iran, but he failed: Iran is racing to a nuclear bomb, and Islamist Turkey is working hard to hurt Israel, shooting Kurds and jailing its own liberal community. Somehow, Obama does not see it.
So why is President Barack such a slow learner? Can he really be so dumb?
Perhaps, the problem is more ideological and less intellectual. President Obama finds it hard to question, much less repudiate, the various nostrums of the “progressive” and “anti-hegemonic” Left that views any kind of tough US posture against Islamic terror or Islamist tyrants to be “colonialist.”
In his own way, Obama cruises the world scene still flying his version of E-L-A-L: Each Lesson Always Left. Is it any surprise that his Mid-East policies are crashing?