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Via-No Left Turns

Steven Hayward

Let's see: Bill Clinton is suddenly everywhere, even appearing again on Fox News, perhaps in a bid to help Democrats in the election. Makes sense, though one wonders if this isn't the start of the Hillary 2012 campaign. But then Jimmy Carter is also out and about with the launch of his White House diary, and is also showing up on "60 Minutes" and even "The Daily Show." Okay, so a lot of younger voters may not recall the wonderful Carter years, but I wonder if maybe a few people will think that since Carter is such a great ex-President, maybe Obama might be better out of office, too.

But most Democrats will probably be about ready to reach for the Kool-Aid this morning, upon seeing the excerpts of Bob Woodward's new book, Obama's Wars. Both the New York Times and Washington Post carry previews of the book today, and they reinforce every suspicion you have about Obama's weakness. Both accounts make clear that Obama was utterly insincere when he proclaimed repeatedly on the campaign trail that Afghanistan--not Iraq--was the war we needed to fight and win. Woodward makes clear that Obama has no stomach for any kind of fight, and that both Obama and Biden are motivated by political concerns and obsessed with Vietnam analogies. "I can't lose the whole Democratic party," Obama says at one point.

Moreover, the idea of winning is entirely foreign to Obama. The Post account says, "According to Woodward's meeting-by-meeting, memo-by-memo account of the 2009 Afghan strategy review, the president avoided talk of victory as he described his objectives."

The worst part for Democrats who have been dogged by the image of being weak on national security for the last 40 years is this comment Obama made to Woodward: "We can absorb a terrorist attack. We'll do everything we can to prevent it, but even a 9/11, even the biggest attack ever . . . we absorbed it and we are stronger."

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