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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Feb. 11, 2013/ 1 Adar, 5773

Secret drone strikes simplify Obama Doctrine

By John Kass

John Kass


JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) For years, scholars and journalists have struggled without much success to define the Obama Doctrine — the president's foreign policy principles.

As a Democratic candidate, Barack Obama couldn't even define his own doctrine as he sought to succeed outgoing Republican President George W. Bush.

In a debate in 2007, back when he was Sen. Civil Liberties and the darling of the left that hated Bush for leading the war party into Afghanistan and Iraq, Mr. Obama said the world was too complicated for him to formalize his doctrine.

"Well, I think one of the things about the Obama Doctrine is it's not going to be as doctrinaire as the Bush Doctrine because the world is complicated," the senator from Chicago said. "And I think part of the problem we've had is that ideology has overridden facts and reality."

But now President Obama has finally stripped away those complications to define the Obama Doctrine this way:

He can assassinate American citizens abroad without trial if they're suspected terrorists.

His weapon of choice? Drone strikes from the air.

Drones are politically antiseptic weapons of death, almost like a video game, except that real blood and tissue is blown against the walls. And it's all being done in secret. The White House won't publicly release the rationale explaining how the Obama administration has shredded the Constitution and taped the bits back together again.

Two things are astounding here: The lack of Democratic outrage over Obama's convoluted policy, and the ease with which Republicans and Democrats have brought us to this point.

Just think about what the president's assassination campaign means. Not for the terrorists, who deserve their fate. But for the rest of us. A president has put it in writing: He can kill you if he finds that you're a threat.

Many of us — and to my shame I include myself — bought into many Bush Republican policies after al-Qaida killed thousands of our countrymen on Sept. 11, 2001. And then came more cameras watching us, and more eavesdropping, and a steady erosion of American privacy.

It came in the name of efficiently thwarting the terrorists. Now the supreme efficiency is offered by a president who campaigned in opposition to waterboarding terrorists for information to find Osama bin Laden.

The president's drone strikes against American citizens overseas "are legal, they are ethical and they are wise," said White House press secretary Jay Carney. He added that such drone strikes are "fully consistent with our Constitution."

Carney must be talking about some other little booklet. He can't mean our American Constitution. If he actually believes that the Constitution allows the president to kill Americans without trial, someone should lead him by the nose to a loony bin.

Not all Republicans are for this. But many establishment Republicans just love it, like Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, an Obama critic and friend of defense contracts.

He stopped thwacking Obama for a day or so to support the president in the assassination doctrine.

"Every member of Congress needs to get on board," Graham said. "It's not fair to the president to let him, leave him out there alone quite frankly. He's getting hit from libertarians and from the left."

Some on the port side are angry, including the severe high priestess of the political left, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow. Unconfirmed reports had her hair smoldering the other evening.

But she's not an elected official. Where was Democratic outrage? You'd think Sen. Dick Durbin would scream. He made plenty of loud public demonstrations during the Bush years, and I almost expected him to start yanking his burning hair from the roots while referencing storm troopers and gulags and such.

Sadly, Durbin and other Democratic pols are rather church-mousian about Obama's drones. With their own guy on the throne, they're worried about damaging the dignity of the presidency.

To his credit, Durbin quietly signed his name to a letter from 11 senators of both parties asking Obama to make public the White House rationale allowing assassinations.

But they won't hound Obama. Expect them instead to shake their jowls angrily at John Brennan.

Brennan is the career CIA officer and supporter of drones and "enhanced interrogation techniques" who was nominated by Obama to run the CIA. He is scheduled to testify Thursday at a Senate confirmation hearing.

There is a big difference between intelligence officers and politicians. Obama seemed to understand this once, when the world was complicated for him. Intelligence officers do what's necessary, and once the work is done and the threat removed, they're often thrown under the bus by politicians.

But politicians? They change the rules to justify what they want to do. And in so doing, they make the future far more dangerous and far less free.

"Who'd we get today?" was the famous question asked repeatedly by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, when he was the pro-drone Obama White House chief of staff, according to Bob Woodward's book "Obama's Wars."

Emanuel's was a gleeful question, full of bureaucratic malice, asked by a man with his loafers on safe White House carpets. Those same carpets still caress Obama's shoes.

The president once opposed "enhanced interrogation" of terrorism suspects. But now he claims constitutional protection to kill them without trial, if they're Americans overseas.

That complicated, nuanced world Obama once lived in? It's been simplified.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

John Kass is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Comments by clicking here.



Previously:



01/29/13 Making a pet project out of Neanderthals
01/17/13 Spielberg stops 'Robopocalypse,' perhaps on orders of evil master robot
01/07/13 Reality TV, how deep can it sink?
11/08/12 Thanks, voters, for caring enough to argue
11/05/12 It's Romney by a head
11/01/12 Sandy swoops in to save Obama. Should it be allowed to?
10/18/12 The other side of the emergency room curtain
10/15/12 Droopy Chia candidates get a do-over
10/04/12 :Schoolchildren's stomachs rumble; drama queens grumble
10/01/12 : Chia Obama vs. Chia Romney: May the best greenfro win
09/25/12 : With bitter campaign in full swing, you need to watch some movies
08/02/12 : Toasting culture's absurdities
04/24/12: Why do you have to sell your privacy to win?
10/13/11: Stupid things men say to pregnant women
09/26/11: Desk zero: ‘Contagion’ lurks just outside office bathroom
09/08/11: Light up your lottery tickets, pass the Hopium
08/31/11: It was only a paper moon , but a legendary hoax
05/27/11: For 2012, it's Obama vs. the smoothies
05/05/11: Is it time to de-friend Pakistan?
04/12/11: China stretches the bounds of decency with cow-human-breast milk
03/23/11: No you're not in control; get over it
02/28/11: Chicago wanted a strongman, and it got one
01/26/11: Oh, c'mon, c'mon, Rahm-bo a victim? That's a stretch
12/13/10: WikiLeaks and Assange pretend there are no consequences
12/09/10: Trendy toys don't stand up to playthings of yore
10/11/10: Obama and his pals need some scarce Hopium for the next election
09/14/10: Obama gets a little bossy with tacit endorsement of Emanuel
08/18/10: Dead Meat walking, but heat to be applied again
07/28/10: No verdict, but Blagojevich trial still has its winners, losers
07/26/10: Obama's fall guy in Shirley Sherrod case is Vilsack the Pooh
07/21/10: Loathing of Steinbrenner softens after his death
07/19/10: Summertime, and the race cards are easy
06/28/10: Does Congress have the guts to fix what court gutted? Honestly, no
12/17/09: Belt-tightening presidential aspirant leaves room for Spam
09/27/09: ACORN can teach the GOP a thing or 2
09/03/09: Blago as author gets it wrong yet again 06/22/09: Obama's latest political play should shock no one
06/17/09: Presidential satire takes Hopium break
06/11/09: E-Verify works, so, of course, let's not use it
06/09/09: First Lady Macbeth's the man, so in your face, Eminem
06/02/09: Judge Sotomayor would think me most unwise
05/12/09: Parents, enjoy this time, in all its creepiness
03/18/09: Stem cell policy shift brings a sinking feeling
03/09/09: Name That Blago Book contest names its winner
03/05/09: Contest: Name Blagojevich's book
02/16/09: Dems undercut aid for U.S. workers
01/20/09: Let the carving begin on Tombstone's tomb
01/12/09: Obama serves Reid taste of Chicago Way
01/02/09: Jesters don't pick up the race card in a nationally televised news conference and slam it into the face of every Dem in the Senate, a palm heel strike to the tip of the nose, leaving all of them watery-eyed, their lips stinging
12/24/08: Governor waxes poetic, but Combine rolls on
12/23/08: Got corruption? Get Jesse Junior G-Man
12/18/08: Will ‘feditis’ spread to Obama and Daley?
12/15/08: Man behind curtain is wizard of Rod, Rahm

© 2012, Chicago Tribune. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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