Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Obama & His Sweet Lemons

You always expect US administrations to rebut bad news one way or another. Normally they just lie in their response, find an ambiguity in the report, or most commonly, change the subject and compare it to a historical problem made by the opposition. Obama's administration, in the main, has been different. It prefers to use the SWEET LEMON approach: a behavior that accepts the sour lemon, but tries to to convince you their lemon is really sweet.

Take the economic situation. Small business is still on the ropes, but the sweet lemon is that the stock market recently hit 10,000. Nearly all the US auto industry is still in deep trouble is a lemon, but the fact that Ford cut a profit makes the lemon sweeter. Or the best one is that unemployment rose to nearly 10% is a lemon, but the fact that the rate of unemployment is slowing is sweetness. Perhaps you like the lemon of a dollar worth 50 cents against the EURO, but it is sweet because it encourages US foreign trade.

This concept is also applied to foreign policy. Hillary Clinton, our Secretary of State, is a bonafide liar since her fabrication of the Bosnian sniper affair during her primary campaign for US presidency. So why anyone takes her seriously escapes me. She has now told the US that since the Israeli refuse to curtail their construction on the West Bank and in Jerusalem at the US request is a lemon, it is sweet because the Jews are limiting themselves to 3000 units in the West Bank; a few commercial buildings in Jerusalem makes the lemon sweeter. Oh by the way, we just caught another spy working for the Israeli Mossad.

After a herculean diplomatic effort by the US to convince Afghan president to rerun his election flawed by massive corruption, the US finds now that his opponent Abdullah Abdullah refuses to run because the whole Karzai election process is corrupt – there will be no rerun. No rerun is big sour lemon, but the US announced that it is now prepared to work with Karzai who has promised to have opponents in his government and clean up his corruption; the measures to clean up corruption remain unspecified. Those promises ironically make the process sweeter lemon... This sweet taste is apparent to only opportunists or dopes.

The US policy in Afghanistan has been shattered by the corruption – the US has no reliable partner in an anarchical narco Afghanistan. Obama has a perfect mandate to pull out US forces, yet it appears that he is attempting to continue the occupation to play to the 20% Republicans and the military industrial congressional lobby. No matter whether he sends 40,000 more troops or none, the Republican war mongers will squeal for more. The war remains an economic stimulus package. It is no accident nearly 50% of the members of the House subcommittee on Pentagon affairs are under ethical investigation by their peers.

At this stage it appears regrettably, that Obama is the light that failed... The pathetic part is there are no viable alternatives – the screwball Republicans with their bibles and teabags are not it by a long shot. Colonel Robert E Bartos USA Ret.


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