Thursday, November 19, 2015

The Often-Backwards Santorum

I'd been lamenting that I was seldom getting the opportunity to rake Rick Santorum over like a gently-aged pile of mulched garbage, but Hark! He's actually been caught by media people saying things:

“This president has been following, this president makes excuses for not acting, and if you look at what this president has done with ISIS, it is the worst foreign policy in the history of America,” the former senator told Brian Kilmeade during an episode of his program Kilmeade and Friends. “The president’s policy toward ISIS is to contain ISIS. ISIS’s policy in order to gain credibility as a caliphate, in the Middle East, and around the world, is to maintain their territorial integrity.”

“Let me repeat that: The president’s policy is to keep ISIS within their bounds; ISIS’s objective is to keep their territorial integrity,” continued Santorum. “Now, what does that sounds like? It sounds like president Obama is in cahoots with the strategy of ISIS to maintain their territorial integrity.”

“And he doesn’t realize, by having this strategy he provides the greatest recruitment tool for ISIS, which is: America is fighting us, and we are maintaining our territorial integrity, and we are winning this battle,” he added. “The president is helping ISIS every single day by the policies we have, and he doesn’t even know it because he refuses to accept the reality that ISIS is a caliphate.”
Every part of that is completely backwards. All of it. The US is engaging in airstrikes in the region and is leading a coalition to combat Daesh.  Daesh's "territorial integrity" is being contained, and even shrunk. The strategy isn't mere containment, although that's a start--it's beating them back. Because they are not, as Santorum wants to insist, a caliphate, although they would like very much for people to acknowledge that they are. They're an occupying force.

The airstrikes are intended to weaken Daesh's hold on occupied areas so they eventually can't hold them. They aren't building a bloody wall around the area and calling it a day. It just takes time.

Getting this close to calling the president a traitor while basically magnifying what Daesh is seems merely backwards, and the swipe coming after Obama blasted Republicans due to their chickenshittery makes a kind of political sense--tit must be followed with tat. But there's something dangerous in this kind of empty-headed rhetorical slanging. Take the position on accepting refugees--here's what Daesh in Dabiq, the publication for the cosmopolitan jihadi, has to say:

Refugees from Syria commit “a major dangerous sin” by seeking shelter in the west, the Isis article proclaims, a sin that mortgages the lives and souls of their children.

“Sadly, some Syrians and Libyans are willing to risk the lives and souls of those whom they are responsible to raise upon the Sharī’ah – their children – sacrificing many of them during the dangerous trip to the lands of the war-waging crusaders ruled by laws of atheism and indecency,” the article states.
They don't want the refugees to be resettled anywhere. When US politicians get a case of the yellow britches and try to block the process, they are doing what Daesh wants.  And I feel like they don't know, or can't convey to their concerned constituents, that these people aren't being loaded up and shipped here with no vetting at all and then given an Obamaphone and a job taken away from a good old US American. They are really vetted. Before Indiana asshole Governor Mike Pence sent a family refugee family away--they had been waiting four years.  The refugee path would actually be the dumbest path for any jihadi trying to come to America. Our politicians would do better all around by sticking to the facts instead of demagoguery.

I know that's asking for a lot. It's probably especially acting for a lot from the microscopically-polling Santorum.  This is a gesture I recognize from his disastrous 2006 re-election campaign, when, flagging in the polls, he decided that he had a big announcement--he found the (pre-1991, degraded) Iraq WMD's. And most Pennsylvanians had already heard about those, and thought he was an asshole.

So? He still is.


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