Monday, June 13, 2016

The Orlando Terrorist Attack Is The Price We Pay For Not Destroying ISIS


In the wake of the Orlando terrorist attack, which left 50 dead and for which ISIS claimed responsibility on Sunday, there’s one question we probably will not debate seriously: whether we should return to the Bush doctrine and shut down terrorist safe havens overseas, and specifically whether we should deploy troops to the Middle East to destroy ISIS.

Instead, gun control and anti-gay bigotry will be the going concerns, especially among our liberal and media elite in the days ahead, just as they were in the hours after the attack. Partisans on the Left believe they can bend those aspects of attack to their advantage in domestic political battles, and that’s what they’ll talk about.
Indeed, it only took President Barack Obama a few minutes in his remarks Sunday afternoon to suggest that one of the proper responses to Orlando would be to pass stricter gun-control measures. This is one of the president’s favorite talking points after a “mass shooting,” regardless of who does the shooting or why. It matters little that the shooter, Omar Mateen, was armed with firearms he appears to have acquired legally, or that he was a licensed security guard and thus wasn’t the type of person who would be denied a firearm even under a far stricter gun control regime.

Obama Doesn’t Think Terrorism Is A Big Deal

No matter. We will hear more about gun control. But we won’t hear the president announce a new foreign policy to defeat ISIS because on a fundamental level Obama think these kinds of terrorist attacks are an acceptable price to pay for American nonintervention in the Middle East.

A passage from Jeffery Goldberg’s lengthy piece in the April edition of The Atlantic, “The Obama Doctrine,” captures the essence of Obama’s thinking about ISIS and radical Islamic terrorism generally. In the immediate aftermath of the Paris attacks last November, Obama, who...


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