Obama just doesn’t understand his job as war chief of this big crazy tribe. A war chief doesn’t have to win; only a wonk’s view of the world would see things that way. A war chief has to look like a war chief and talk like one. And yell a lot. Obama just can’t manage that, and when he tries, he makes us feel stupid. He embarrasses us, trying to sing along to a tune you know he thinks is just dumb.
It’s a shame in a way, because his war wonks did a pretty good job actually running the wars. I like to think of them grumbling about it now, a bunch of youngish dressy-casual technocrats drowning their sorrows in frappucinos at some suburban DC Starbucks, counting off their so-what accomplishments: “We got out of Iraq … not one American killed there this year; we took down Qaddafi without one single American casualty; we killed bin Laden right in front of the Pakistani Army and got away with it; what does a C-in-C have to do to get a little respect around here?”
The answer is: He has to look convincing when he holds our enemy’s head up on a stick and shows it to the crowd, all drippy and drawing flies. That’s what we want, and Obama, with all that creepy self-control, is the last guy you’d pick for that job.
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