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Over the past few weeks we have remarked on what we see as President Obama’s presumption that public resources are for his own uses – including political uses – regardless of laws or past political protocol.
Thus we noted the extraordinary “scrubbing” from public records of references to Jerusalem as part of Israel after the Justice Department told several courts in the well-known Zivotofsky passport litigation that such references didn’t exist.
We also pointed to flattering references to Mr. Obama that were added to biographical sketches of past presidents featured on the White House website.
We had suggested that the president may have acted, if not necessarily against the letter of two federal document anti-tampering statutes, certainly against their spirit.
Over the past week, far more serious examples of presidential hubris have surfaced.
The New York Times, which ordinarily runs interference for Mr. Obama, went much further than we did. In a May 30 editorial, “Too Much Power for a President,” the Times said,
It is has been clear for years that the Obama administration believes the shadow war on terrorism gives it the power to choose targets for assassination, including Americans, without any oversight. On Tuesday, The New York Times revealed who was actually making the final decision on the biggest killings and drone strikes: President Obama himself. And that is very troubling.Mr. Obama has demonstrated that he can be thoughtful and farsighted, but, like all occupants of the Oval Office, he is a politician, subject to the pressures of re-election. No one in that position should be able to unilaterally order the killing of American citizens or foreigners located far from a battlefield – depriving Americans of their due-process rights – without the consent of someone outside his political inner circle.
Incredibly, The New York Times is telling its readers that it suspects the president of the United States of harboring a political motivation in ordering the killing American citizens abroad. Hard stuff, indeed. But there is more.
The basis of the Times editorial was an exhaustive news story beginning on the front page of its May 29 issue titled “Secret ‘Kill List’ Proves a Test of Obama’s Principles and Will.” The article described the inner workings of the U.S. drone war and placed President Obama at its center. It seems obvious to us from the access the reporters had and the tone of the piece that it was promoted by the White House in order to burnish, in the run-up to the November election, the president’s image as a hard-nosed defender of U.S. security. Thus the article said,
In interviews with The New York Times, three dozen of his current and former advisers described Mr. Obama’s evolution since taking on the role, without precedent in presidential history, of personally overseeing the shadow war with Al Qaeda.
The article featured several substantive comments from Thomas E. Donilon, Mr. Obama’s national security adviser, Harold Koh, the State Department’s top lawyer, and Jeh Johnson, the Pentagon’s chief lawyer. But even more significant was the statement that one quoted official “requested anonymity to speak about what is still a classified program.”
Can anyone recall another instance when this or any previous administration was so publicly forthcoming on a matter of such import for national security? A couple of days later, on June 1, also beginning on the front page, the Times published another long piece – “Obama Order Sped Up Wave of Cyber Attacks Against Iran” – which again involved disclosure of top secret information. The article reported that from the first days of his presidency to the present, President Obama, in conjunction with Israel, has been pushing for increasingly sophisticated attacks on Iranian computer systems that run Iran’s main nuclear enrichment facilities.
“This account of the American and Israeli efforts to undermine the Iranian nuclear program,” the article acknowledged, “is based on interviews over the past 18 months with current and former American, European and Israeli officials involved in the program, as well as a range of outside experts. None would allow their names to be used because the effort remains highly classified, and parts of it continue to this day.”
Does anyone think this kind of access involving top-secret operations could have occurred without White House support? Or that it’s merely coincidental that the storyline hews to the administration’s election-year narrative of Mr. Obama as warrior-president?
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“these soldiers are on the front lines of a war that the entire world is fighting”
Hayovel’s vision: to share with them (Jews) a passion for the soon coming jubilee in yeshua messiah.”
Dalai Lama: In the interest of Tibetans today to have peaceful co-existence with the Chinese.
The War projects to lower Israel’s 2014 GDP 0.5% but will have little influence on foreign investors
It is in the nature of the Nations of the World to be hostile towards the Jewish People.
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The congregants, Ethiopians spanning generations, were beaming with joy and pride.
The withdrawal from the Gaza Strip nine years ago did not enhance Israel’s security.
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In 19th century entire ancient Jewish communities fled Palestine to escape brutal Muslim authorities
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But the world is forever challenging our Jewish principle and our practices.
If this is how we play the game, we will lose. By that I mean we will lose everything.
Reportedly, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates have formed a bloc that seeks to counter Islamist influence in the Middle East.
And why would the U.S. align itself on these issues with Turkey and Qatar, longtime advocates of Hamas’s interests?
Several years ago the city concluded that the metzitzah b’peh procedure created unacceptable risks for newborns in terms of the transmission of neo-natal herpes through contact with a mohel carrying the herpes virus.
Hamas has coupled its ideological intolerance of the existence of Israel with numerous terrorist attacks and rocket launchings.
Since nothing is static in warfare, the lesson is clear: Iron Dome must be continuously improved to stay ahead of developments in any rocket technology Hamas and Israel’s other enemies might get their hands on.
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