Dancing Around Failure

Without mentioning the name of America’s Commander in Chief, the New York Times let its readers know this weekend that the anti-ISIS strategy isn’t working:

Confounding declarations of the group’s decline, the twin offensives have become a sudden showcase for the group’s disciplined adherence to its core philosophies: always fighting on multiple fronts, wielding atrocities to scare off resistance and, especially, enforcing its caliphate in the Sunni heartland that straddles the Iraqi-Syrian border. In doing so, the Islamic State has not only survived setbacks, but also engineered new victories.

“Nobody here from the president on down is saying that this is something that we’ll just overcome immediately,” a senior State Department official said in a briefing with reporters on Wednesday, in which the ground rules demanded anonymity. “It’s an extremely serious situation.”

Within Iraq, the group’s offensive was taking shape almost immediately after the government’s victory last month in the central city of Tikrit.

We particularly enjoyed the use of the impersonal “declarations of the group’s decline” in the passage above.

If we had a GOP president, the Times would be flaying him alive at this point, with nonstop coverage of serial policy failures and their devastating consequences for the peoples caught up in a brutal war, for American power and prestige and for the future of a strategically vital region.

As it is, we merely get a bloodless recounting of the facts.

And yet even as the Times doggedly refuses to connect the dots and focus on the catastrophic and recurring failures and miscalculations of this administration’s Middle East strategy, it appears quite eager to criticize the strategies of… the emerging GOP field.

Is it really too much to ask for better than this?

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