Is Obamas Showing Signs Of Courage
By: Ken Hughes
By authorizing Navy Seal Snipers to take out the pirates holding Captain Phillips President Obama showed signs of courage. Africa has always been a safe haven for pirating primarily because itâ€™s tolerated. The Barbary Pirates operated in the Mediterranean and up and down the west coast of Africa for hundreds of years until the early 1800s when the U S Marines took Tripoli in North Africa cleaning them out for good. Perhaps Obama issuing orders of engagement off the shores of Somalia will discourage pirating off the horn of Africa or at least make the terrorists think twice about who they challenge. Is Obama taking a lesson from Teddy Roosevelt â€œSpeak softly and carry a big stick?â€ Iâ€™m less concerned now about Obama being able to call for a head shot when itâ€™s needed than I was before. If the rescue of Captain Phillips is an example of how Obama acts in a crisis heâ€™s certainly passed the first test.
Credit certainly must go to those Navy Seals who preformed the precision rescue of Captain Phillips. Thereâ€™s a great deal of speculation just how the rescue was preformed. It doesnâ€™t make much difference if they jumped from 25,000 feet or if they were shot out of the torpedo tubs of a submarine, they got there and did what they were sent to do. We canâ€™t praise these Navy Seals enough for their courage and cool in time of crises. As long as we have young men and women serving as volunteers in the several branches of the military, we here at home can feel safe.
There are already naysayerâ€™s who think the president acted to soon without going the last step negotiating, that last step could have been Captain Phillipâ€™s death. For those who believe all life has value I suggest the pirates made that determination when they took a hostage. Anyone who doesnâ€™t respect the lives of others canâ€™t care much about their own lives. Piracy isnâ€™t a trade for the faint of heart the risks are always calculated against the potential gains. In that part of Africa sharing a million dollar pay off is enough for a man to sell all his wives and children.
There are parts of this earth God seems to have forgotten when handing out the necessary resources to sustain life, Somalia seems to be one of those places.
WSWS.Com the voice of World Socialists are accusing Obama by using force rescuing Captain Phillips of opening another front for the war on terrorism, [except that isnâ€™t what the Socialists call it.] Socialists see it as a way for a few improvised Africans to earn a living. There contention is its just one more cost of the ships doing business in the region and as long as no one [usually] is harmed the practice should be allowed to continue. If we go back to the Barbary Pirates who operated for several hundred years in the Mediterranean and track their expansion from the coasts of North Africa to the entire region there are reasons for stopping them before they get started. The pirates are bound to improve with practice until they become a formidable force beyond just hijacking and extortion.
Itâ€™s interesting to listen to some of the pundits on the talk shows, both radio and TV, The exchange between hawks and doves is ludicrous. The hawks are in favor of invading Somalia, that didnâ€™t work for Clinton and it wonâ€™t work for Obama. The doves say pay the ransoms and be done with it, also no solution. Surrendering to extortion is never a solution to any problem it only magnifies them. The best solution is doing what seems to have worked this time. Shooting first and ask how much ransom are they asking for later.
Now itâ€™s time for the voters to send a message to congress to end the partisan bickering and get down to the business of managing the countries affairs in a more respectable and bipartisan manor. With a united congress standing up for the principles this country was founded on perhaps the rest of the world would once more show some respect. It has been congress who brought down respect for America not its presidents. Iâ€™ve had the privilege of traveling to a number of countries and in the past three decades the United States Congress has become a joke, itâ€™s know as the best legislative group in the world any hustler can buy cheap.
The voters need to take a serious look at their congress man and women and decide if theyâ€™re getting what theyâ€™re paying for, if not in 2010 make a change.