Mainly because he refuses to really fight.
Obama: We won’t be winning any quick victories over that JV team
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Please note that there is a difference between the confident language of victory and the smug language of triumphalism. Barack Obama’s got the latter down pat. With a smirk on your face and your nose in the air, you remind everyone that you won, and you’re going to do what you want to do - and even if you’re not supposed to do it, who’s going to stop you?
We’ve always known he can talk like that. But the language of victory? Sure, you can cite the whole oceans-rising-planet-healing thing, but even there it was more about exalting a generation (at least the ones who supported him) before they had ever really done anything to deserve it. Gird yourselves for a worthy battle and wait for inspiring words of confidence from the commander in chief? Yeah, good luck with that:
Obama highlighted battles in which U.S.-aligned fighters have prevailed against the group, including combat in the Syrian cities of Kobane and Tal Abyad and the Iraqi city of Tikrit. He said Islamic State fighters have lost more of than a quarter of the populated territory they had captured in Iraq.
But the group continues to control some of Iraq’s most important cities and holds sway in unpopulated areas that are more difficult for government forces to control. In May, Iraqi forces ceded the city of Ramadi to Islamic State when they retreated en masse.
U.S. military personnel in Iraq have struggled to ensure that Iraqi forces - which remain reliant on Shiite paramilitary fighters and lack capability in key areas such as logistics, intelligence and air power - can effectively take on Islamic State.
“As with any military effort, there will be periods of progress, but there are also going to be some setbacks,” Obama said.
I suppose some of this is wanting to make sure he doesn’t sound like Reckless Cowboy Bush. But he sure sounded a lot more confident in January when he was dismissing ISIS as Al Qaeda’s JV team. Then again, the whole idea of that statement was to minimize the threat of ISIS so as not to have to actually take the possibility of a fight seriously. This is what leftists always do with threats to us or to our allies. They minimize them. ISIS is just the JV team. Iran won’t really use the bomb. Abbas is really serious about peace.
I get that they don’t want to get mixed up in any military action, but the responsible leader prepares as if it’s going to be necessary, then is glad not to have to give the order if it can be averted in some other way. And in all likelihood, the thing that averts it is that the U.S. was ready to fight and no clear-headed enemy wants that fight because they know what will happen.
That’s not the case here, though. Obama has no intention of fighting ISIS, and he can’t even be bothered to pick up the pace training the Iraqi forces (which he blames the Iraqis for, naturally). ISIS knows this perfectly well. They’ll take some casualties from U.S. air attacks, but that’s not going to stop them from taking the territory they want - and under no circumstances will Obama change his mind and commit troops because he made a political commitment to his left-wing base, and that rules over all else.
And he won’t even speak the language of victory, for one simple reason: He really doesn’t expect to win, which is what usually happens when the leader isn’t committed to winning.