A Thug At Home, A Weakling Abroad
After two years of being called a tyrant and a dictator, President Obama returns to Washington from a five-day overseas trip to find that he has become a weakling.
Would-be opponents such as Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty and Sarah Palin had been trying out this somewhat contradictory line of attack for more than a month, as Obama gave mixed signals about events in Egypt and Libya. But the “weak leader” charge gained traction over the weekend, as Obama chose to launch the attack on Gaddafi’s forces while on an excellent adventure in South America with his family.
At about the moment the Tomahawk missiles began to rain down on Libya, Obama was joking with Brazilians about Carnival, the World Cup and the Olympics. Rather than hearing an Oval Office address announcing the new war, Americans got word from the president in a scratchy audio recording. As thousand-pound warheads pounded Libyan forces, Obama was kicking a soccer ball, seeing the sights and watching cowboys in sequins.
It was perilously close to George W. Bush’s My-Pet-Goat moment, when then-President Bush continued reading a storybook with children on Sept. 11, 2001, after he was told that the second World Trade Center tower had been hit.