Patterico's Pontifications


President Obama: Missing In Action

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:55 am

[guest post by Dana]

(via NYT)

At the massive unity march in Paris Sunday, and with some 40 world leaders in attendance, one world leader was notably missing in action: President Obama.

Officials from across Europe and elsewhere, including Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu of Turkey, were in Paris to attend the rally.

In a rare display of unity, the president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel also participated.

(The linked NYT article does not mention the president’s absence.)

As a reminder, President Obama referred to France as our “oldest ally” in his condemnation of the attacks:

I strongly condemn the horrific shooting at the offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris that has reportedly killed 12 people. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of this terrorist attack and the people of France at this difficult time. France is America’s oldest ally, and has stood shoulder to shoulder with the United States in the fight against terrorists who threaten our shared security and the world. Time and again, the French people have stood up for the universal values that generations of our people have defended. France, and the great city of Paris where this outrageous attack took place, offer the world a timeless example that will endure well beyond the hateful vision of these killers. We are in touch with French officials and I have directed my Administration to provide any assistance needed to help bring these terrorists to justice.

It should be noted that the White House announced today – as world leaders gathered in Paris to confirm their support and stand in unity with the French people in their fight against radical Islam terrorists who use Islam – that it will be hosting a Summit on Countering Violent Extremism in February. Originally planned to take place this past October, the summit was delayed for unexplained reasons:

In the lead-up to the midterm elections, White House spokesmen repeatedly refused to discuss the reason for the delay or even to confirm on the record that it had been postponed.

(emphasis added)


157 Responses to “President Obama: Missing In Action”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  2. In fairness to the president maybe France specifically asked him to stay away, Dana. He needs a really big plane and always a bunch of limos for his motorcade. I am wondering how well France is equipped to handle the logistics and security for all these foreign leaders converging on such short notice.

    elissa (371d62)

  3. Teh Won will appear via satellite hook-up from the 19th hole…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  4. I would think security considerations would keep him away unless he was really determined to go there – but that’s what Vice Presidents are for.

    Or did somebody think that would look even worse?

    Sammy Finkelman (6b5229)

  5. Given that Netanyahu attended, how much more secure it could have been? With that, no Joe Biden and no John Kerry (who is in India doing prep work for the presidents).

    Dana (8e74ce)

  6. Shame shame.

    njrob (f3ac3d)

  7. Where was he?

    If Netanyahu — the person the terrorists would shoot first, second and third — can make it, why can’t the US President? I don’t buy the security thing, and if that is the problem then the President has too much security. Frankly, less security might make presidents show some humility. Couldn’t hurt.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  8. Would having Biden or Kerry there instead of the president really make the whole thing that much less embarrassing?

    elissa (371d62)

  9. More likely: Obama secretly supports the Caliphate. Everything he has done has furthered it. I keep asking cui bono? and it is always the bad guys.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  10. Would having Biden or Kerry there instead of the president really make the whole thing that much less embarrassing?

    Yes. Even if they are clowns. Both of them and some Senators, too. This is like the Thatcher funeral — a clear snub.

    He was, however, able to make it to Michael Brown’s funeral.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  11. A snub to appease?

    Dana (8e74ce)

  12. Kevin M.–I was being facetious in my earlier comment regarding Air Force One and the convoy of limos. But let’s be honest–he doesn’t leave home without them. Even to go on vacay.

    elissa (371d62)

  13. Obama supposedly sent Eric Holder, but Eric Holder was nowhere visible at the march.

    “The future must not belong to those who oppose Islamic Fascism.”
    –the real sentiment of the Obama administration

    pst314 (ae6bd1)

  14. Sadly, I think part of this goes back to the theme of the convo I had with MikeK and a few others a couple weeks ago in light of the vacation golf game/military wedding brou ha ha. There are simply not any people in the White House who truly understand protocol, statesmanship, and presidential poise. They often completely misjudge what this president is supposed to do (and not do) publicly and how those things might “look” to regular people both here and around the world.

    I’m betting Obama is going to be really “angry” when he reads in the paper tomorrow morning about this march in Paris that he didn’t know about– and missed. 🙂

    elissa (371d62)

  15. america is busy helping all the violent terror monkeys scamper away from guantanamo bay

    be free lil monkeys

    go run and play!

    happyfeet (831175)

  16. #LikeABoss… only smaller… @TheDemocrats

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  17. TFG gonna hold a global summit? What the heck does he think this was?

    Gazzer (c44509)

  18. A global summit on Preening 101.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  19. .. and shakin’ his narrow ass tail-feathers…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  20. Holder is in Paris. Perhaps he was deemed unworthy of a position in group?

    He was sticking the administration’s line that all these attacks are “lone wolf” events. And he continues to obfuscate about the nature of the conflict. Indeed, he and the feckless won seem to be congenitally unable to link islam with violence. It’s the beauty of the electronically amplified morning call to prayer, no doubt.

    bobathome (d4306f)

  21. The President is not there in fact, nor in spirit. It is the latter that is the problem. The question has always been, and very much remains, “Which side is he on?” The answer to that question has never been clearer. To Obama, Charlie Hebdo and, more generally, France and the West got what they deserved.

    Extra Credit: Is it reasonable to call him a Fifth Columnist when he is our head of state?

    ThOR (a52560)

  22. Teh One is probably just annoyed that the real world has once again intruded on his 387th pivot to the economy.

    edoc118 (b88618)

  23. Holder was blabbing on TV from Paris but couldn’t find the time too attend the march. Probably worried about insulting Islam.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  24. Obama doesn’t think the “actions of a few” warrant any real response. These misguided, unhappy evil-doers with their regrettable but totally understandable (inhis view) actions will eventually recognize how they are misinterpreting the words of the one, true Prophet, peas be upon him.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  25. Mission accomplished for president renegade.

    mg (31009b)

  26. In addition to Holder, according to CNN the United States was also “represented ” by the Ambassador to France. Quick!–without googling can anybody here even name who that person is? It’s not an impressive representative, BTW.

    elissa (371d62)

  27. If you even needs to ask where our SCOAMF stands on religion, Mahdi Obama’s own statements will clarify his position:

    (From the Conservative Tribune website.)

    1. “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam”

    2. “The sweetest sound I know is the Muslim call to prayer”

    3. “We will convey our deep appreciation for the Islamic faith, which has done so much over the centuries to shape the world — including in my own country.”

    4. “As a student of history, I also know civilization’s debt to Islam.”

    5. “Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance.”

    6. “Islam has always been part of America”

    7. “we will encourage more Americans to study in Muslim communities”

    8. “These rituals remind us of the principles that we hold in common, and Islam’s role in advancing justice, progress, tolerance, and the dignity of all human beings.”

    9. “America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles of justice and progress, tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.”

    10. “I made it clear that America is not – and will never be – at war with Islam.”

    11. “Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism – it is an important part of promoting peace.”

    12. “So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed”

    13. “In ancient times and in our times, Muslim communities have been at the forefront of innovation and education.”

    14. “Throughout history, Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality.”

    15. “Ramadan is a celebration of a faith known for great diversity and racial equality”

    16. “The Holy Koran tells us, ‘O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another.’”

    17. “I look forward to hosting an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan here at the White House later this week, and wish you a blessed month.”

    18. “We’ve seen those results in generations of Muslim immigrants – farmers and factory workers, helping to lay the railroads and build our cities, the Muslim innovators who helped build some of our highest skyscrapers and who helped unlock the secrets of our universe.”

    19. “That experience guides my conviction that partnership between America and Islam must be based on what Islam is, not what it isn’t. And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.”

    20. “I also know that Islam has always been a part of America’s story.”

    Now, let’s compare those quotes to what he has said about Christianity:

    1. “Whatever we once were, we are no longer a Christian nation”

    2. “We do not consider ourselves a Christian nation.”

    3. “Which passages of scripture should guide our public policy? Should we go with Leviticus, which suggests slavery is OK and that eating shellfish is an abomination? Or we could go with Deuteronomy, which suggests stoning your child if he strays from the faith?”

    4. “Even those who claim the Bible’s inerrancy make distinctions between Scriptural edicts, sensing that some passages – the Ten Commandments, say, or a belief in Christ’s divinity – are central to Christian faith, while others are more culturally specific and may be modified to accommodate modern life.”

    5. “The American people intuitively understand this, which is why the majority of Catholics practice birth control and some of those opposed to gay marriage nevertheless are opposed to a Constitutional amendment to ban it. Religious leadership need not accept such wisdom in counseling their flocks, but they should recognize this wisdom in their politics.”

    6. From Obama’s book, The Audacity of Hope: “I am not willing to have the state deny American citizens a civil union that confers equivalent rights on such basic matters as hospital visitation or health insurance coverage simply because the people they love are of the same sex—nor am I willing to accept a reading of the Bible that considers an obscure line in Romans to be more defining of Christianity than the Sermon on the Mount.”

    7. Obama’s response when asked what his definition of sin is: “Being out of alignment with my values.”

    8. “If all it took was someone proclaiming I believe Jesus Christ and that he died for my sins, and that was all there was to it, people wouldn’t have to keep coming to church, would they.”

    9. “This is something that I’m sure I’d have serious debates with my fellow Christians about. I think that the difficult thing about any religion, including Christianity, is that at some level there is a call to evangelize and prostelytize. There’s the belief, certainly in some quarters, that people haven’t embraced Jesus Christ as their personal savior that they’re going to hell.”

    10. “I find it hard to believe that my God would consign four-fifths of the world to hell. I can’t imagine that my God would allow some little Hindu kid in India who never interacts with the Christian faith to somehow burn for all eternity. That’s just not part of my religious makeup.”

    11. “I don’t presume to have knowledge of what happens after I die. But I feel very strongly that whether the reward is in the here and now or in the hereafter, the aligning myself to my faith and my values is a good thing.”

    12. “I’ve said this before, and I know this raises questions in the minds of some evangelicals. I do not believe that my mother, who never formally embraced Christianity as far as I know … I do not believe she went to hell.”

    13. “Those opposed to abortion cannot simply invoke God’s will–they have to explain why abortion violates some principle that is accessible to people of all faiths.”

    14. On his support for civil unions for gay couples: “If people find that controversial then I would just refer them to the Sermon on the Mount.”

    15. “You got into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton Administration, and the Bush Administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

    16. “In our household, the Bible, the Koran and the Bhagavad Gita sat on the shelf alongside books of Greek and Norse and African mythology”

    17. “On Easter or Christmas Day, my mother might drag me to church, just as she dragged me to the Buddhist temple, the Chinese New Year celebration, the Shinto shrine, and ancient Hawaiian burial sites.”

    18. “We have Jews, Muslims, Hindus, atheists, agnostics, Buddhists, and their own path to grace is one that we have to revere and respect as much as our own”

    19. “All of us have a responsibility to work for the day when the mothers of Israelis and Palestinians can see their children grow up without fear; when the Holy Land of the three great faiths is the place of peace that God intended it to be; when Jerusalem is a secure and lasting home for Jews and Christians and Muslims, and a place for all of the children of Abraham to mingle peacefully together as in the story of Isra— (applause) — as in the story of Isra, when Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed, peace be upon them, joined in prayer. (Applause.)”

    20. “I believe that there are many paths to the same place, and that is a belief that there is a higher power, a belief that we are connected as a people.”

    We don’t think that Obama is a closet Muslim. He simply espouses theological universalism, or the idea that all religions have truth in them and somehow all end up in the same place when it comes to eternity.

    The problem is that truth, by its very nature, is exclusive. All religions make exclusive claims – that’s not something that’s unique to Christianity. As Tim Keller put it, “All claims are exclusive. The Gospel is an exclusive truth but it’s the most inclusive exclusive truth in the world.”

    Obama’s idea of pluralism is an interesting one. He praises Islam for being so “tolerant” and criticizes Christianity for not being accommodating enough to Muslims. He also says that we must not “slander the prophet of Islam.” Yet there is no mention of violent, oppressive shariah law, nor is there any mention of the slaughter of Christians in the Middle East at the hands of Muslims.

    Obama lauds Islam’s great history yet goes after conservative Christians who want to practice their faith in the public square. Whether it’s Hobby Lobby or Catholic organizations and charities being discriminated against by Obamacare, Obama has shown little tolerance for those groups when it comes to their free exercise of religion. This isn’t true pluralism, it’s pluralism on his terms, and it’s disgusting and hypocritical.

    PPs43 (6fdef4)

  28. It is stunning that he or even an ambassador is not there. But you know who really blew it? Hillary. She and Bill, of Clinton Global Initiative, could have scored a political coup by being there. Show up the other candidates and show some moral courage. All the leftists who would oppose it would forget about it in six months.

    I don’t think it’s security, elissa. There are lots of international targets in that first line of the march. Easy pickings for a terrorist. One more would not have made a difference.

    Doubly stunning is the panicked WH apparatchiks pulling out the trust summit gambit. Shame on them. Shame.

    Patricia (5fc097)

  29. Did anyone check for him to see if the golf-courses in Paris are open in winter?

    askeptic (efcf22)

  30. PPs43 (6fdef4) — 1/11/2015 @ 11:35 am

    And worse, what he has said about America.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  31. Patricia, you know who REALLY blew it?

    Jeb, Mitt, Rand, Ted …

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  32. Kevin M – I couldn’t agree more.

    mg (31009b)

  33. Although maybe the Republicans weren’t invited. The Paris march organizers intentionally snubbed Marine Le Pen even though she heads the largest political party in France.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  34. i don’t need to see jebbie jiggles flouncing around Paris chirping about unity

    i have no use for the silly whore

    is that wrong?

    happyfeet (831175)

  35. Kevin M (25bbee) — 1/11/2015 @ 11:54 am

    It is estimated that 3MM people marched.
    What if Marine Le Pen has her own march and doubles that?

    askeptic (efcf22)

  36. In spite of Obama being MIA, it’s ironic is that a number of these world leaders making an appearance to show solidarity with the French in their fight against radical Islam, are also the same that have warned against Islamaphobia and/or naming religion as a reason for the atrocities in France this week. A mixed message and sadly, as has happened before, the message can easily become so diluted that the concern over how one segment of the population might respond and feel about this will be dominant in the convo. The fight for the freedom of speech, whether in the press or in the public square, should be not diminished by appeasement of any sort. Again, as I said yesterday, it would have been brilliant if everyone marching carried a placard with the Charlie cartoon on it, rather than I Am Charlie.

    Of course, President Obama’s non-attendance may just be his way of further condemning and not condoning any attribution of any sort of religious motivation behind what happened.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  37. Kevin M,

    Le Pen is nobody’s fool:

    The exclusion of the Front was great news for Le Pen. Nobody believed that she would have wanted to go and be associated with the political mainstream, but, by failing to invite her, the Socialists had given her a cudgel. “I don’t intend to submit myself to this blackmail,” she told Le Monde. “It’s a total perversion of the concept of national union. They’ll have to accept the consequences from the voters.” She went on, “This whole thing is a way of pushing aside the only political movement that has no responsibility in the present situation, along with its millions of voters. All the other parties are deathly afraid. They’re thinking of their little elections and their little mandates. Their old reflexes that have frozen political life for twenty years and that dug the chasm between those who govern and the people. If I’m not invited, I’m not going to insist. It’s an old trap. The slightest incident and they’ll say it’s my fault.”

    Heh, the author of this New Yorker piece, claims:

    We know very little, as yet, about what the killers who terrorized Paris for the past three days sought to achieve, beyond the murders of Charlie Hebdo staff members; police officers; and Jewish hostages at a kosher supermarket.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  38. Are we really sure which team Obama is playing for?

    How surprised would you be if Obama “became” a Muslim after his presidency?

    gahrie (12cc0f)

  39. True, Kevin. Why didn’t they go? No photos of course but they could have taken a stand.

    patricia (5fc097)

  40. I think the amount of security must have been incredible, given the chaos that would have erupted on the world scene had someone succeeded in an attack.
    Though I think all but the most radical Islamists would consider such an attack as not only risking a “backlash” but justifying one, and they would need to ask themselves if they were prepared for all out civil war in most of Europe, GB, and elsewhere.

    Somehow I don’t think President Obama did much to strengthen the position of the US in the world, as he claimed he would do, unless his view of “the world” is the 57 Islamic states.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  41. I don’t know what’s worse: That Obama would have really liked to attend but his handlers and schedulers messed up the situation, or that he really didn’t want to be in Paris because his heart wouldn’t have been in the rally—and would have intruded upon his leisure time.

    Whatever it is, in a way it’s best the current president of the US be seen as little as possible on the world stage since his existence is a daily reminder of just how second rate and banana-republic-ized the country has become.

    Mark (c160ec)

  42. it’s a lousy time of year for golf in Paris…

    redc1c4 (4db2c8)

  43. He simply espouses theological universalism, or the idea that all religions have truth in them and somehow all end up in the same place when it comes to eternity.

    Some days I think that Obama is so evenhanded because he views himself as the next great prophet.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  44. Documentary: The Great Louis Zamperini – the “Unbroken” Story

    Steve (06ec7b)

  45. Some days I think that Obama is so evenhanded because he views himself as the next great prophet.
    Kevin M (25bbee) — 1/11/2015 @ 12:51 pm

    Hence, my appellation of the title “Mahdi” Obama.

    PPs43 (6fdef4)

  46. I just went to the WH site to check TFG’s sked. He doesn’t appear to have public appearances all week. Is Reggie in town?

    Gazzer (c44509)

  47. You expect a visit to Paris from the Chief Appeaser, who said “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam” while railroading a filmmaker into prison? Even Obama has enough sense of shame to avoid that hypocrisy.

    David Pittelli (b77425)

  48. “We must protest these attacks in the strongest terms possible but, of course we do not
    wish to alarm our Muslim friends.

    These attackers have merely assuming the blanket of religion to hide their evil.

    We know that Islam would never condone these attacks and stands ready to help
    us prevent future incidents.

    We, of course, ignore the rocket firings by renegade Palestinians against the
    Jews because we all know they asked for it by their seizure of the ancestral
    lands of these patient people.

    The struggle in Palestine has nothing to do with the riots and attacks here.
    They are merely coincidental and must be ignored by all France.”

    *Imagining some French Apparatchik somewhere in France today giving a speech.*

    jakee308 (f0aa61)

  49. Simple answer: Junior Varsity. The JV president did not make the travel team.

    Gramps, the original (9e1415)

  50. Something got airbrushed out of the picture. Here’s a better version.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  51. It’s real simple: President Obama would never attend any event that isn’t All About Him.

    The Dana who understands (1b79fa)

  52. Here’s a thought: Will the Police National and the DGSE restrict themselves to waterboarding?

    mojo (5c8ea5)

  53. @51. I just said those exact words to Mrs G.

    Gazzer (c44509)

  54. gahrie asked:

    How surprised would you be if Obama “became” a Muslim after his presidency?

    Very. For President Obama to become a Muslim would be for him to acknowledge that there is a Greater Power than himself.

    The sober realist Dana (1b79fa)

  55. Hence, my appellation of the title “Mahdi” Obama.

    I suggest Barack Maud’Dama, to riff off of Dune. After all, he IS the Kwisatz Haderach.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  56. Here’s a thought: Will the Police National and the DGSE restrict themselves to waterboarding?

    It depends. A Islamic radical? They probably wouldn’t go that far. National Front? You betcha.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  57. #50,

    Looks like Clint was onto something…

    Dana (8e74ce)

  58. Oh Jake!

    I don’t mean this as a criticism of the Obama administration, but just as an American I do wish that we were better represented in this beautiful procession of world leaders,” Tapper stated.

    elissa (89d4ea)

  59. #LikeABoss… @TheDemocrats (

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  60. can anybody here even name who that person is?

    I’ll guess a soap opera producer.

    I cheated and looked.

    Hartley is known for being a campaign bundler who raised more than $500,000 for Obama’s re-election bid in 2012

    At least a soap opera producer has some resume.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  61. Teh Duffer-in-Chief
    playing thru his second term
    mister empty chair

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  62. Some carried the cartoon in the March today in Paris.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  63. Nothing on his schedule?

    Sounds like he’s blocked out time for a trip to either Tehran, Havana, or Pyongyang.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  64. I’ve been thinking about this all day because foreign policy and diplomacy are two of my favorite topics, and this involves both.

    I think there are several reasons Obama might have decided not to attend the French unity rally: Security has to be an issue, especially if it’s true that the French believe terrorist sleeper cells have been activated. It’s likely the Secret Service did not believe it could protect Obama at an outdoor venue on the streets of France. It’s also possible Obama didn’t want to go for personal reasons — he doesn’t like to travel unless he can be the center of attention, or he could still be getting over his vacation and wanted to play golf, or he may not be personally sympathetic to what is essentially an anti-Muslim rally. I think there are also diplomatic reasons he might choose not to attend, chiefly that he doesn’t want his attendance to jeopardize his attempts to reach out to Muslim nations like Indonesia, Pakistan and Iran. He could believe the Europeans will always need America and he prefers to focus on the Muslim world.

    We can’t know what his motives are for sure but there are things we can know about the Obama Administration’s response to the French unity rally: First, we know Obama, VP Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, and Attorney General Eric Holder did not attend, even though Holder was in Paris just before the rally and neither Obama nor Biden had anything on their calenders. The only major Administration official with a conflict is John Kerry, who is in India, but even he was available to attend the rally since his visit is preparing for Obama’s trip to India on January 26 — a full two weeks away.

    Instead of the President, Vice President, or a Cabinet level official, America was represented at the rally by its Ambassador to France, Jane Hartley. If the reason for avoiding the rally was security, then I guess Obama believes his ambassadors are expendable … but we already knew that after Chris Stevens’ death in Libya, didn’t we? Nevertheless, the fact that a fairly senior American official like an ambassador was there to represent America suggests that Holder, Kerry or even Biden could have attended — perhaps accompanied by personal security agents like Netanyahu, who was “flanked by a bodyguard.”

    I think we can rule out most personal reasons for Obama’s decision not to send someone more senior to the unity rally. Even if Obama didn’t feel like making a hasty trip to Paris, that certainly wouldn’t stop him from sending Biden, Kerry, or Holder in his place. The one exception to this is if Obama’s decision was motivated by sympathy for Muslims and their causes. I don’t think we can rule that out but if that were the cause of this decision, then I think he would also want to avoid sending a senior official to the rally because of the message it sends to Muslim nations. Therefore, he would probably tell himself that he was acting for valid foreign policy/diplomatic reasons and not personal reasons.

    If so, that tells us everything we need to know about Obama’s foreign policy goals.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  65. More “Fundamental Transformation”.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  66. let’s laugh at islam
    laugh at and ridicule it
    THE right thing to do

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  67. Ou est Obama?

    He has shamed us for 6 years now.

    jakee308 (f0aa61)

  68. He is a small small man.

    JD (86a5eb)

  69. That was an enlightening post, PPs43.

    Thank you.

    ThOR (a52560)

  70. I have to say I am of the opinion that the Secret Service is a monumental multi-billion buck boondoggle. Forget the hookers, forget the guy with a gun in an elevator with TFG, forget actual shots fired at the WW being blamed on a backfire, forget multiple fence jumpers (anyway we’ve been told fences don’t work) the fact is that if someone wanted to harm anyone, it is easily accomplished from a long distance with a rifle and nothing can stop it.
    He was here in Phoenix on Friday and they don’t tell anyone the route they just shut down streets trapping people in their cars for hours. No detours, entire freeways shut down. Such arrogance and lack of concern for the proles. And it’s all Kabuki theater.
    BTW, The Queen often travels on British Airways. The entire royal budget is about $35M, or what Mooch spends on a trip to Spain.

    Gazzer (c44509)

  71. He is a small small man.

    He is a small small person. FIFY

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  72. Oops, the entire budget , not just travel, for the Royal family should have been £35M not dollars.

    Gazzer (c44509)

  73. Gazzer, I have no doubt that if someone shot at Obama from a crowd, they would machine-gun the crowd.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  74. Empty Suit Guy
    Qu’est-ce que c’est

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  75. Actually, Obama was probably watching football instead of playing golf. Maybe he can be NBA commissioner after his term is over, but the League would have to relocate to Hawaii. Or he can always be a guest on ESPN. He’d do better than Kinky Friedman.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  76. Someone photoshop an empty chair into that line ….

    htom (4ca1fa)

  77. I believe the longest recorded successful sniper kill was 1.5 miles! A snipe from a half mile would be a cake walk for one of these guys which is why I largely feel the SS is a waste of time and considerable money. Their original remit was to counter forgery. Now they guard the world’s most famed phony.

    Gazzer (c44509)

  78. htom, check out KevinM post at 50.

    Gazzer (c44509)

  79. Why would he? When he knows he won’t be the center of attention. Come on folks…

    The Emperor (49dd50)

  80. My bad.

    htom (4ca1fa)

  81. He can’t seem to face up to the facts
    Lost Fall elections and He
    grinds his axe
    Knows folks snicker behind his back
    Got no mojo cuz he’s just a hack
    Empty Suit Guy
    Qu’est-ce que c’est
    Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
    Run run run run run run away
    Empty Suit Guy
    Qu’est-ce que c’est
    Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
    Run, run, run, run, run, run, away

    He shares a thought and He can’t even finish it.
    He’s talking a lot, but He’s not saying anything.
    Folks know He’s got nothing to say, teleprompter’s broken
    Say something once, why say it again?
    Empty Suit Guy
    Qu’est-ce que c’est
    Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
    Run run run run run run run away
    Barack Obama
    Qu’est-ce que c’est
    Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
    Run, run, run, run, run, run away

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  82. In light of the participation of Abbas and several othersupporters of terrorism, perhaps it’s just as well 0bama gave it a miss. Netanyahu, Lieberman, Yishai, etc. should have refused to march with Abbas et al.

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  83. By the way, at first Netanyahu was planning not to go, citing security concerns, until he heard that Lieberman would be there. He couldn’t afford to let Lieberman one-up him so close to an election.

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  84. And of course the level of outrage when this sort of thing happens in Paris is hard to reconcile with the blasé way the very same world leaders treat the exact same thing when it happens in Israel.

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  85. According to El Ard, Hollande specifically asked Netanyahu to stay away. In general I don’t put much stock in its reporting, but this story seems to fit the observed facts.

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  86. Kevin M (25bbee) — 1/11/2015 @ 10:27 am

    If Netanyahu — the person the terrorists would shoot first, second and third — can make it, why can’t the US President? I don’t buy the security thing, and if that is the problem then the President has too much security.

    He probably does.

    Off the top of my head I can think of two considerations:

    1) This was scheduled very fast, and however good the security might in reality be, the Secret Service had no opportunity to review it and approve it.

    Now the thing is, one aspect of good security is considered not letting it be known too far in advance where the president is going. It’s the law of averages. You figure, maybe there could be whatever number of people or groups that might want to attack the president. If they don’t know hes going to be there, they can’t get ready, and the amount of security needed to prevent that is much less.

    This is a general principle. Lee Harvey Oswald worked on the parade route. He had that going for him. * But if he hadn’t known the day before that President Kennedy would pass by, he would not have brought his rifle there hat morning, and it wouldn’t have been there, because it wasn’t normally kept in the Texas School Book Depository (and even so he had to hide it)

    So no announcement, or short notice, is good security.

    But it one thing for the general public not to know that the president is going to be at a certain location at a certain time. It’s another thing for the Secret Service itself not to know!

    * (if there was a conspiracy that involved Oswald, the parade route would have had to have been scheduled to pass by his place of work. This would mean Governor Connally was part of the conspiracy, because it took a telephone call from him to alter the parade route. Not an impossibility, as Connally could indeed have been part of a conspiracy if he didn’t know he was, and didn’t know what the real reason was for objecting to one parade route.)

    2) The Secret Service takes precautions, when the president is traveling, that aren’t taken in the case of any other person in the world, so the security, even if reviewed, would not have been enough for them, although it would be enough to satisfy everyone else. They might want to go over every part of his route with bomb sniffing dogs and close it off 6 hours in advance maybe, sealing all trash cans and other places that a bomb could be hidden, or inspect all buildings within a mile for places someone might put a rifle or an anti-tank missile, and check for radiation, and make sure all windows are closed and have a large number of agents in place watching windows a mile away and have helicopters circling above.

    Frankly, less security might make presidents show some humility. Couldn’t hurt.

    It’s probably not doing the country any good. And with all they do, probably the Secret Service wishes they could do more. Of course, for the White House, it can get so bureaucratic, someone can just jump the fence and come in, and they can have an alarm that’s disabled because it gives off too many false alarms.

    Sammy Finkelman (6b5229)

  87. #70: Gazzer, MahdiObola is just following in the footsteps of a line of abusers of the office, for example, JFK. A friend of my Dad’s lived in an apartment about 2 blocks away from the Russian Embassy in D. C., which had a clear view of the building. He lived on the 4th floor as I recall. Kennedy’s squeeze lived in the same apartment building. It was not uncommon (in 1961) for the Secret Service to lock down the entire building. If you were in your apartment, you had to stay in until further notice. If you wanted to return to your apartment, you had to wait until further notice. The reason? Our youthful president was visiting his girlfriend. The Russians must have figured this out rather quickly. Camelot!! Democrat Culture!! Security for our leaders?

    Fortunately, Kennedy enjoyed his pleasures in the WH most of the time.

    bobathome (d4306f)

  88. There was nothing scheduled on the president’s schedules today except football:

    According to an administration official, President Obama spent part of his Sunday afternoon watching a National Football League game on television. Both games were broadcast hours after the march.


    Obama and Vice President Joe Biden remained in Washington, despite having no events on their public schedules Sunday. Secretary of State John Kerry was a world away in India, on a pre-planned trip.

    Attorney General Eric Holder was in Paris for a terrorism summit held on the march’s sidelines, but he slipped away and made appearances on four American morning television talk shows just as the incredible rally was starting.

    Holder, Obama’s longest-serving cabinet member, was pictured shaking hands with French officials after the event, but he slipped away – as did Mayorgas – before the march kicked off around 3:00 p.m.

    The attorney general appeared on four Sunday morning talk shows around the same time as the march, although it’s unclear whether he spoke live from Paris or if his segments were pre-recorded.

    The Department of Justice would not immediately comment on Holder’s schedule with, and a spokesperson for Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson similarly did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Perhaps the president was resting up for a really important event tomorrow.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  89. DRJ (a83b8b) — 1/11/2015 @ 3:54 pm

    If the reason for avoiding the rally was security, then I guess Obama believes his ambassadors are expendable

    Not just that – that they are more expendable than a president – but if there is some super sophisticated plot, the plotters won’t blow the whole plot or organization on an Ambassador.

    But here you had a whole bunch of world leaders.

    First, we know Obama, VP Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, and Attorney General Eric Holder did not attend, even though Holder was in Paris just before the rally and neither Obama nor Biden had anything on their calenders….Nevertheless, the fact that a fairly senior American official like an ambassador was there to represent America suggests that Holder, Kerry or even Biden could have attended…Even if Obama didn’t feel like making a hasty trip to Paris, that certainly wouldn’t stop him from sending Biden, Kerry, or Holder in his place….

    Holder was supposed to represent the United States, according to the New York Post, and, as you mentioned, he was indeed in Paris.

    A million people have turned out on the streets of Paris, and they’re being joined by leaders from around the world to show support for the victims of the deadly terror attacks.

    We will talk to Attorney General Eric Holder, who is also in Paris….

    …SCHIEFFER: And we turn now to Attorney General Eric Holder. He is also in Paris this morning. He has just finished a meeting with his law enforcement counterparts from around the world.

    Sammy Finkelman (6b5229)

  90. was the idea that Holder was going represent the United States just reporters not getting the story straight, or were they misled?

    Sammy Finkelman (6b5229)

  91. If so, that tells us everything we need to know about Obama’s foreign policy goals.

    By itself, and disregarding the past 6 years, any variety of excuses that don’t reflect very badly on Obama and his White House of Horrors could be deemed plausible. But taking into consideration a whole range of things — including the semi-outright snubbing of the funeral of Margaret Thatcher, on one hand, and, on the other hand, Obama’s inappropriate bowing like a servant in front of foreign leaders — makes it easy to assume the worst reasons for why things do happen in America’s current presidency.

    We’ll never live this era down.

    Mark (c160ec)

  92. Kevin M (25bbee) — 1/11/2015 @ 4:08 pm

    Gazzer, I have no doubt that if someone shot at Obama from a crowd, they would machine-gun the crowd

    I don’t think so.

    I don’t think so. They’d just try to push the president out of the way, block the view.

    This happened with President Gerald Ford, twice, in September 1975, and nothing like that happened, and things haven’t changed that much.

    Sammy Finkelman (6b5229)

  93. Also, it’s noteworthy that President Bush went to the 9/11 site just a few days after the attacks and everything was still in massive shambles and destruction, and the possibility of other attacks had not yet been out ruled. He went because his country needed him to be there, and the world needed to see that the United States would not be deterred or undone by the catastrophe. It was imperative he make the in-person statement. Perhaps this is what Aaron David Miller, who among other responsibilities during his time at the State Department under both Republicans and Democrats, helped deliberate over which officials to send to which events, meant when he referred to a “willful president”:

    If there were threats, “a willful president would dismiss many of them given the fact that this is presumably a response and terrorism creating an abnormality. You want to counter that and you want to show up.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  94. My understanding is that the marching heads of state had a full complement of free speech deniers.

    steveg (794291)

  95. To echo what Milhouse said above: a march against terrorism that included one of the world’s chief inciters of terrorism (Abbas) is a march worth skipping.

    Netanyahu was standing next to the head of the EU, which no doubt explains the look of pain on his face.

    kishnevi (3719b7)

  96. Who’s the black guy?

    nk (dbc370)

  97. He is the prez of Mali, nk, the country where the hero of the deli (the AFrican American as CNN referred to him) came from.

    Patricia (5fc097)

  98. Thank you, Patricia. I see that Mali is a French-speaking country.

    nk (dbc370)

  99. And France saved Mali, and recovered Timbuktu from the rule of the Islamists.

    Sammy Finkelman (6b5229)

  100. Steveg, it wasn’t a march for press freedom, so those links are irrelevant. It was a march against Islamist terrorism, so people who suppress Islamist press have every business being there. And I don’t give much credence to anyone who lists Israel and the USA as suppressors of free speech.

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  101. There’s a report (rumor?) that the French asked Netanyahu not to come to the rally. I initially thought this was because of a security concern, something that might also have impacted Obama’s decision-making, but apparently the request came because Hollande didn’t want the show of unity overshadowed by the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.

    It seems the only other possibility is that Obama wasn’t invited, but that seems highly unlikely since the American ambassador was there so there must have been an invitation.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  102. Patricia…and also the country from which(according to what I have read) came the terrorist of the deli.

    kishnevi (294553)

  103. hero of the deli

    I don’t see how he’s any kind of hero, even by his own account. I’ve been hearing rumours out of France that his word isn’t necessarily reliable, but even taking him at his word, what did he do? He headed down to the freezer to hide. Once there he noticed that some people had tagged along, so he let them in. That doesn’t make him a hero. What else was he going to do? What else would anyone, no matter how cowardly, have done? Shouted to the gunman that he’d missed some sales Juifs, and he’d be bringing them up directly?! Sorry, that doesn’t make him a hero, it just makes him not an active terrorist. Had he gone back up and snuck more people down to the freezer, that would have been heroic, but he doesn’t claim to have done that. And then, by his own account, he headed off for the freight elevator and got the **** out of there. Didn’t bring anyone along with him either. So what exactly is he being commended for?

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  104. I don’t know about the reliability of this report, but supposedly Holder confirmed he would be attending which would indicate an invitation was certainly extended to the White House. Yet, as we already know, Holder slipped away and did not attend.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  105. The story I read was that he told others to escape with him, but they were afraid to try to escape with him. (not being able to judge how well he knew what he was doing)

    He had been together with them for a while – enough to warn them to keep very quiet.

    Of course that hasn’t been confirmed, but it is said the people in the freezer later thanked him.

    When he first got out, the police thought he was one of the terrorists and had handcuffed him for 1 and a half hours.

    Sammy Finkelman (6b5229)

  106. — hard to reconcile with the blasé way the very same world leaders treat the exact same thing when it happens in Israel.—

    Doubly hard to reconcile with a much worse spilling of blood in Nigeria.

    red (2f19f1)

  107. 105
    The people in the freezer seem to have confirmed his story, and his first action on getting out was to contact the police to make sure they knew what was going on inside.
    Also he was familiar with the layout, and knew what was where in the dark. So he could get out withou much noise. Leading others in the dark withou attracting attention would be much more complicated, and he may not have known in advance if he could actually escape that way. Suppose there was a second terrorist at the rear entrance?
    Beyond that, not everyone thinks crystal clear in such a situation. We can not all be Chuck Norris. If we were, Chuck Norris would not be so awesome, after all.

    kishnevi (3719b7)

  108. Milhouse
    The list has some issues, but there are some very repressive people on that list. The African from Gabon etc.
    Their work speaks for itself, so your dodge is appreciated, but the vast majority of crimes the dirty regimes are accused of is repression for criticism of persons or institutions.
    But to get along, maybe we can just stick to Qatar, Gabon and a few others, where people are in jail for criticism of the very leader who is marching.
    Please provide documentation of how these leaders are fighting Islamic terrorism by jailing and torturing journolists for criticizing them personally.. and please let me know how that differs greatly from an Islamist acting because his prophet was defamed.
    The American equivalent is any march with Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson out front holding hands with Eric Holder… its a disgrace

    steveg (794291)

  109. I’m not expecting him to be Chuck Norris. I’m just saying that being a hero requires some amount of actual heroism. Merely letting people into the freezer rather than slamming the door on them, let alone handing them over to the gunman, isn’t heroic. Not even a little bit.

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  110. Please provide documentation of how these leaders are fighting Islamic terrorism

    I was mostly referring to Egypt.

    Milhouse (9d71c3)

  111. In Germany, Holocaust denial is a serious crime, the equivalent of a felony. In Canada, telling a restaurant employee to wash her hands after using the bathroom is a violation of human rights. In England, fans waving bananas in a soccer match with black players is “hate speech”. They did not have Oliver Wendell Holmes and the Roosevelt and Eisenhower appointees to interpret the First Amendment. I don’t think that they have the First Amendment even.

    nk (dbc370)

  112. This is tomorrow’s NY Daily News front page. (The NY Daily News, BTW, is considered a liberal rag.)

    elissa (f24d56)

  113. R.I.P. Anita Ekberg

    Icy (f76da2)

  114. There goes the Daily News’s White House access. And they better start gathering their expense vouchers and receipts for their tax lawyers.

    nk (dbc370)

  115. nk–I think most reporters and media outlets have figured out by now that “White House access” doesn’t buy them much except a worthless, frustrating and wholly unproductive minute or two with Carnie, Marie Harf, Jen Psaki, or Mr. Josh Earnest.

    elissa (f24d56)

  116. well that doesn’t stop them from an editorial line, that would make kim jong un, wince. they’ll be back to the ‘two minute hate’ at the real enemy the GOP, in short order,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  117. Just seen in an online avatar of a man in a sweatshirt emblazoned with the motto
    Je suis Charlie Martel
    Figured you guys would appreciate that.

    kishnevi (a5d1b9)

  118. I think his HEAD caught up with his EGO and he can no longer fly in the jet

    he’s disgraceful

    sharon levy (e018f1)

  119. I won’t link it here per blogowner rules. But Politico’s headline is “Barack Obama’s French kiss-off”

    The headline writers of the world are in overdrive over this.

    elissa (f24d56)

  120. …Obama and his White House of Whores…


    redc1c4 (34e91b)

  121. re #108: If I may paraphrase PJOrourke, the press is not going to give the kidnapping and murdering thugs the outrage it deserves because , just like Rwanda, it is black people killing black people.

    seeRpea (3cc998)

  122. More moderate Muslims on view.

    I wonder if Christiane Amanpour was appropriately sickened by reports of French children of the Islamic faith refusing to honor their nation’s moment of silence? But knowing her ilk, she probably philosophically rationalizes away such behavior and believes it must be dealt with through idiotic theories of, “well, this has to be fought by the French government by it providing better healthcare, childhood nutrition programs, and more diversity in its education system.”

    Or: “If the French had strongly condemned Israel a long time ago and embraced the Palestinians, France wouldn’t be breeding such anger in people.”

    Or: “French immigration policies should have a stipulation that if new arrivals from Islamic societies sign a contract that renounces sympathy for terrorism, they’ll receive a special stipend worth 20,000 US dollars.”

    Mark (c160ec)

  123. It’s not that simple. The EU has a rule that it does not deport illegal immigrants back to their homelands. It has a second rule that member countries can deport them to their country of entry into the EU, in practice France, Italy, and Greece. Who are not allowed to send them back to their home countries. Combined with that are the agreements between France and its former colonies.

    If you have seen in the news that Merkel is championing immigrants’ rights, it’s because f***ing Germany is sitting pretty. All its displaced persons from WWII that were going to come back have come back, and since few illegals sneak across its borders (some did from the Balkans during the troubles back in the ’90s) it can pick and choose which it keeps and which it makes the Mediterranean countries’ problem.

    nk (dbc370)

  124. bush woulda gone

    happyfeet (831175)

  125. Happy feet,

    I mentioned that at 93. He definitely would have attended.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  126. Ag80,

    Funny how CNN doesn’t even wonder where Joe Biden was and why he didn’t attend.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  127. Biden would have tried to get Merkel to sit on his lap. 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  128. Andrew Johnson in blackface. He isn’t opposed to slavery. He just wants to make sure he’s the one holding the whip. Or maybe Barry is hiding in the bunker.

    At any rate we’ve found an issue he isn’t willing to flip flop on.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  129. in keeping with the general amnesty for American Eagle killing wind farm operators.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  130. Obama did not want to upset muslims or the big check saudis arabia is going to give him when he leaves office.

    nuke mecca (142735)

  131. I found it somewhat odd that our previous Secretary of State, a women who would not only like to be President but believes she just flat deserves our next President, chose not to attend.

    The inquisitive Dana (78d5b0)

  132. Here’s another possibility: Obama is indecisive about many things, and he might have been struggling to make a decision about whether to go to the unity rally or who to send in his place. During this process, he could have sent Holder to Paris and then had second thoughts, which would explain why Holder left Paris before the rally.

    Ultimately, perhaps Obama did what he almost always does — voted “Present” and did nothing — only this time, he wasn’t even present.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  133. It was too crowded to putt.

    Jim (84e66d)

  134. Peoples are placing an entirely inappropriate raft of expectations, that to be the ‘Leader of the Free World’ on our microcephalous nihilophilic gay crack whore National Mascot.

    The fault is in your racist hearts, loozer America.

    DNF (5e8377)

  135. Maybe Obama and his team had a conflicting commitment to participate in demonstrations in Islamabad. There are no pictures because they were all in burkas, strictly for security purposes, of course.

    ropelight (bfe794)

  136. 39. I’ll buy that.

    DNF (5e8377)

  137. We demand that our president be everywhere at once!

    Also Bish, at 93, is still alive and was welcome to attend. Where was he if he “would have gone”?

    California calvin (186db7)

  138. The Administration is already feeling the need to respond. The embassy now says Holder was supposed to attend the rally, although there was no explanation for why he did’ attend and the American ambassador took his place.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  139. 141. The Cowboys, Broncos, Pats, et alia, cannot watch theyselves.

    DNF (5e8377)

  140. So we had an ambassador there.

    California calvin (186db7)

  141. The lives of sixteen little people are not worth a hill of beans in this crazy, mixed up world. But we could at least have had Paris.

    nk (dbc370)

  142. 144. Another bundler and Rosetta Stone customer.

    DNF (5e8377)

  143. 146. LOL.

    DNF (5e8377)

  144. Peters this moment:

    “This President does not have the guts of a French actress. He is a moral, physical coward.

    He will not come out of his intellectual bunker and face reality”.

    DNF (5e8377)

  145. I found it somewhat odd that our previous Secretary of State, a women who would not only like to be President but believes she just flat deserves our next President, chose not to attend.

    To be fair, Dana, even scroungy Hillary must realize that such a maneuver on her part would have been seen as a big breach of official protocol and — at as such an action from her would be properly categorized by her critics — a cheap way for her to hog some of the limelight.

    Mark (c160ec)

  146. a cheap way for her to hog some of the limelight

    All of the limelight. The muslim in chief was a no show.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  147. ==So we had an ambassador there.=

    Yes. Yes, we did California Cal.

    There was “an Administration presence at the rally,” a White House aide insisted Sunday afternoon in a background statement sent to a number of news outlets by way of explanation: “Ambassador Hartley is there.”

    That’s Jane Hartley, the former Obama bundler whom he sent to France last year, and whom even most insiders in Washington and Paris couldn’t pick out of a crowd. Instead, she tweeted photos of her view of the crowd, which she wrote was “Très émouvant.” (Very moving.)


    elissa (687b43)

  148. “We demand that our president be everywhere at once!”

    LOL! Teh Sad Sack couldn’t even vote “present”…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  149. if obama could have turned this into a racial, anti America incident he would have had the whole cabinet there!

    Jim (84e66d)

  150. After Sadat;s assassination Reagan sent Nixon, Ford and Carter.

    But I guess ex-presidents are expendable.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  151. This was definitely a micro-aggression.

    JD (86a5eb)

  152. ropelight (bfe794) — 1/12/2015 @ 6:30 am Maybe Obama and his team had a conflicting commitment to participate in demonstrations in Islamabad. They are trying to claim that the demonstration or memorial – probably a small one – at the school in Peshawar, Pakistan where 132 students were killed was a conflict for Kerry, but it really doesn’t fit, although travelling back and forth would have prevented meetings.

    As it is, Kerry’s appearance was cancelled because of bad weather (I assume it was not advisable for his plane to take off or to land)

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

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