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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Thomas Friedman, "Challenging Putin’s Values": Don't Believe The Washington Post!

Were you hoping for more flatulence from Thomas Friedman this morning? Congratulations, you've got it!

In his latest New York Times op-ed entitled "Challenging Putin’s Values" (, Friedman attempts to come to the aid of a beleaguered President Obama, whose foreign policy is under attack from all sides. Tom Terrific writes:

"Look how just our limited sanctions triggered a stampede by the electronic herd of global investors who have pulled more than $50 billion out of Russia this year."

More than $50 billion has left Russia this year? Obama has run America's national debt over $17.5 trillion, an amount which is never going to be returned.

Friedman continues:

"Don’t let anyone tell you the sanctions are meaningless."

Well, two days ago in an editorial entitled "Obama’s half-measures give Vladi­mir Putin little to fear" (, The Washington Post informed us:

"VLADIMIR PUTIN’S assault on Ukraine has been relentless and increasingly reckless: Forces working with Russian personnel in eastern Ukraine are torturing and murdering opponents and holding international observers hostage. In contrast, President Obama’s response has been slow and excruciatingly measured. New U.S. sanctions announced Monday fall well short of the steps that senior officials threatened when the Russian offensive in eastern Ukraine began three weeks ago."

Of course, you mustn't listen to the editorial board of The Washington Post!

Friedman's conclusion:

"We couldn’t stop them if we wanted to. [Ukrainians have] been empowered by globalization and the I.T. revolution. Get used to it, Comrade Putin."

Remind you of something? Three years ago, in a New York Times op-ed entitled "They Did It" (, Friedman wrote jubilantly of the revolution in Egypt:

"They did this all by themselves. That is so important. One of the most powerful chants I heard in [Tahrir] square on Friday night was: 'The people made the regime step down.'

This sense of self-empowerment and authenticity — we did this for ourselves, by ourselves — is what makes Egypt’s democracy movement such a potential game-changer for the whole region.

. . . .

This could get interesting — for all the region’s autocrats. Egypt’s youthful and resourceful democrats are just getting started."

And where are we today in Egypt? On Monday, an Egyptian court sentenced 683 Muslim Brotherhood members to death. What does Obama have to say about that? Answer: Nothing.

And now the Benghazi scandal has been reawakened owing to FOIA disclosure of documents the White House sought to suppress, which indicate that there was an attempt to mislead Americans concerning the reason for the attack (see:

Which brings us to Maureen Dowd's op-ed of today's date entitled "Is Barry Whiffing?" (, in which she writes:

"Stop whining, Mr. President.

. . . .

It doesn’t feel like leadership. It doesn’t feel like you’re in command of your world.

How can we accept these reduced expectations and truculent passivity from the man who offered himself up as the moral beacon of the world, even before he was elected?"

Yes, Maureen is correct: No one takes Obama seriously overseas. Okay, as observed by Friedman, the Russian stock market has dropped some 13 percent since the beginning of the year, but do you really think Putin, an ex-KGB lieutenant colonel, gives a damn? Trust me, he doesn't.


  1. you sound like a Fox News story. No substance, no facts, no nothing, just..... be afraid, be very afraid.

    1. 683 Muslim Brotherhood members sentenced to death and no response from Obama, yet you claim no substance, no facts. Even WaPo acknowledges that Obama's foreign policy is a fiasco. I am a progressive, but I am not blind, and I am certainly not in denial.

  2. Mr. Cesar only attacks people in difficult situations, bankrupt of any real solutions. But then again, he doesn't want solutions. Reading between the lines, what he really wants is for your sons and daughters to once again spill their blood for the defense of others, and to give him something else to complain about.

    1. Sorry to disappoint, Volcano Man, but those who read this blog know that JG opposed the Second Gulf War and the American ground presence in Afghanistan. Yes, I know, reading requires time and effort, and it is always much easier to spew visceral rubbish.

    2. Jeff also served for more than 30 years in the regular army and the reserves. All three of his children have also served.