Thursday, September 13, 2012
Willard Romney Fails Another Foreign Policy Test
Hours before anyone was killed, when protests were just beginning in Cairo, the US embassy there distanced itself from this anonymous, obscure video by stating, "The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims – as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others."
John Murphy, a communications professor at the University of Illinois who studies presidential rhetoric and political language, said Romney was wrong to label it an apology.
"First, the statement does not use the word ‘apology’ or ‘apologize’ and does not use any synonym for that word. There is no statement here that says, ‘We are sorry.’
"Second, the grammar of the statement condemns the actions of a third party. An apology, to be pedantic, is when the first party says to the second party, ‘I have offended you and I am sorry.’ This statement condemns a third party -- misguided individuals -- that does not officially represent the United States. The term ‘individuals’ dissociates them from the U.S.
Therefore, it's impossible to say that this is an apology from the U.S. to anyone.
"Third, the statement does not apologize for the right of free speech; it affirms it. It condemns those who abuse the right of free speech, but it claims that this is a universal right, as is religious toleration. So, the statement does not like what the misguided individuals said and did, but recognizes they have a right to do it."
"It's a condemnation," Murphy said, "not an apology."
Once a separate incident -- in Libya -- ended up with a US ambassador and 3 others killed, President Obama stated, "I strongly condemn the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi, which took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. While the United States rejects efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others, we must all unequivocally oppose the kind of senseless violence that took the lives of these public servants. Make no mistake. Justice will be done."
I'd love to see some rightwing bigmouth point to the words that suggest an apology in that statement.
There isn't one.
Nonetheless that didn't stop Willard Romney from getting right into the fray, long before all the facts were known, and hurling a highly inappropriate cheap shot at President Obama to try to bolster his failing campaign -- in the middle of an international incident where 4 Americans were killed. Except for the little sideline snipers like the Obese Drug Addict Rush Limbaugh and the Failed Half Term Alaska Airhead, NOT ONE republican stood with the unpresidential, unstatesmanlike, inflammatory idiocy that came from Weak Willard's mouth. Most republicans as well as Democrats condemned his unpatriotic, unamerican rhetoric.
All Willard had to do to look good at this critical time was to say something like, "We are all Americans; we grieve for the loss of these fine patriotic public servants, and we know that justice will be done." That's it. SHUT THE MOUTH AND WALK AWAY FROM THE MIC WHILE YOU'RE AHEAD.
But that's not what an inexperienced buffoon with no foreign policy experience whatsoever like Willard could possibly do.
And this guy wants to be president...