By David J. Seidemann, Esq.
Even on the worst TV game shows, the loser usually walks away with a parting gift. So as Chuck Hagel leaves his position as secretary of defense, he should be entitled to take something with him. My suggestion is that he take President Obama, as once again we are in free fall. We’ve had four secretaries of defense in six years as the Oval Office and the administration solidify their place in history as the New York Mets of politics. Sorry, Mets fans. But at least you guys have a chance.
This president is intent on sending two distinct messages. First, at all costs, he will go at it alone to achieve his agenda, supported by the left-wing media that still see him as possessing the ability to walk on water and perform other miracles. The other message, which is even more dangerous, is that on the foreign stage, America must be brought to its knees. On the domestic front, his message is that America and its governmental agencies are engaged in the institutionalized persecution of minorities.
These philosophies can be appreciated in Mr. Obama’s reaction to two recent news events: the Har Nof murder of four rabbis by Arab terrorists and the decision by the grand jury in Ferguson, Missouri, not to indict Officer Wilson in the shooting of Michael Brown.
Words matter because they send a message and often grant license to those looking to excuse their behavior. Would Arabs murder Jews even without Obama’s rhetoric? Absolutely. Would some members of Ferguson or outside rabble-rousers burn, shoot, loot, vandalize, and otherwise cause mayhem and destruction even without Obama’s comments? Unfortunately, yes.
But given the opportunity to speak with moral clarity, the president, by design, chooses words that convey a murky message of what is right and what is wrong.
After the Har Nof slaughter, Obama should have referred to the heinous killings as the outrage they represented. A true leader would have remarked that these murders represent the difference between the nation of Israel, which desires peace, and the Arabs, who seek to destroy. That is what Ronald Reagan would have said. That is what George Bush would have said. But not Barack Obama. After noting the killings, he said, “Too many Palestinians and too many Israelis have died.” He purposely equated the two, supplying fuel to the “cycle of violence” argument, which he knows full well will result in Israel taking the lion’s share of the blame in the biased media. To be sure, Mr. Obama is quite content with that result.
Those intent on justifying mayhem and murder will now point to the president’s words as tacit approval of their actions. Obama wants controlled chaos. He desires murky waters. He wants bills that are signed now and read later. Obama wants all of this because while the opposition is expending time and energy trying to clear the waters, he pushes his agenda through under the cover of darkness and confusion.
Regarding the grand-jury decision in Ferguson, Obama once again passed on the opportunity to deliver a clear message of law and order. He should have stated that we are a nation of laws and the system works based on the evidence presented; we are a nation of laws and anyone who riots will be prosecuted; if you respond to perceived injustice with lawlessness, you are the problem, as you are the one operating out of the bounds of the law; and when you burn your own community’s stores, you are burning your future. Instead, the president justified the anger and outrage of the protesters.
Do not misunderstand me; I am not saying that the grand jury reached the proper decision. I am not saying anger is not justified here. I don’t know. I was not there. I did not review the evidence. But neither did Mr. Obama, and neither did those who chose to express their feelings through destroying their own community. Obama and his attorney general, Eric Holder, created this dynamic in the first few hours after the shooting.
Can you imagine the residents of Har Nof reacting to the barbaric murders by burning their own neighborhood stores, schools, and police vehicles?
It is a nonsensical reaction by some people whose “anger” was justified by the president of the United States. But that is what he wants, because chaos, in Obama’s world, humbles America, and we must be humbled.
Chaos means we are confused, without direction, and someone else–another country or another leader–must lead. Domestically, he wants to create confusion and anger so he can be savior to those suffering from persecution. On the world stage, he wants to create a sense of disengagement and confusion so that others can fill the void. His offering of mixed messages is by design. He is no fool.
The dictionary defines humble in two ways. Humble is defined as being conscious of one’s failings. There is great nobility in that. But that definition is not the one that propels Mr. Obama. The dictionary also defines humble as a lowering in self-respect in the estimation of others. That, my friends, is what fuels this man. And that is by design.
David Seidemann is a partner with the law firm of Seidemann and Mermelstein and serves as a professor of business law at Touro College. He can be reached at 718-692-1013 or


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