Mission Accomplished in Iraq?

By John W. Lillpop

It's 3 am in the morning, America. Do you know where your commander-in-chief is?

Are you sure we even have a commander-in-chief these days?

With all due respect to President Obama, the president's job involves more than trotting around the globe like a black version of Tony Robbins, Zig Ziggler or one of the other famed motivational speakers.

Yes, it is true that pep talks and words of encouragement from the lips of the U.S. President to foreign governments and citizens are important.

However, denigrating American leaders, culture, religion, and history at every opportunity just to puff up the esteem of foreign nations is not what the U.S. president should be doing, especially on foreign soil.

Furthermore, bowing to a foreign King makes a mockery of the Revolutionary War, Declaration of Independence, and our cherished Democracy.

Jetting about the world like a spoiled rock star may be thrilling to some, but matters of much greater import cry out for presidential leadership and action by the commander-in-chief.

For example, our commander-in-chief needs to resolve the Somali pirate standoff with an appropriate show of force, sufficient to end the current crisis with an overwhelming American victory, and to send unambiguous messages to terrorists who roam the sea.

Namely, the United States does not, under any circumstances, negotiate with terrorists, and pirates who elect to cross swords with the American military do so at considerable risk to their lives and well being.

Call the pirates "criminals," rather than terrorists, if you must, but do not fail to deliver the urgent message: America will not be bullied!

Once the pirates of Somalia have been crushed, Obama needs to wake up and take a second, and longer, look at doings in Iraq, where the top commander says that the deadline for withdrawal of U.S. troops may be in serious jeopardy.

As reported, in part, at Timeonline.com:

"The activities of al-Qaeda in two of Iraq’s most troubled cities could keep US combat troops engaged beyond the June 30 deadline for their withdrawal, the top US commander in the country has warned.

"US troop numbers in Mosul and Baqubah, in the north of the country, could rise rather than fall over the next year if necessary, General Ray Odierno told The Times in his first interview with a British newspaper since taking over from General David Petraeus in September.

"He said that a joint assessment would be conducted with the Iraqi authorities in the coming weeks before a decision is made.
Combat troops are due to leave all Iraqi cities by the end of June. Any delay would be a potential setback for President Obama, who has pledged to withdraw all combat forces from Iraq by August 2010 as he switches his focus to Afghanistan.

"The ultimate decision on keeping or withdrawing troops would be taken by Nouri al-Maliki, the Iraqi Prime Minister, handing him a big dilemma, given the desire by most Iraqis for the US military to leave the country.

"Tens of thousands of supporters of Moqtada al-Sadr, the antiAmerican Shia cleric, marched through Baghdad yesterday, the sixth anniversary of the fall of the capital, to demand the withdrawal of US forces.

"General Odierno, 54, said that he was also concerned about the risk of renewed conflict between Arabs and Kurds in northern Iraq, where tensions are rising over the ownership of territory. He also cited the “very dangerous” threat posed by Iranian-funded militants, who appear to be styling themselves on Lebanon’s Hezbollah."

In summary, President Obama needs to accept the fact that the election campaign is over. He won, and as of now, is entitled to all of the fame, power and perks that come with the job.

However, this president has yet to acknowledge that the most vital role of any president is sober execution of the duties of commander-in-chief in defense of this great nation.

It's well past time for President and commander-in-chief Obama to own up to his responsibilities for the defense of America, the only legitimate Constitutional role for government in a free society.