Obama hits a wall in Berlin

Reading Obama’s speeches is a little like reading New York Times editorials. They don’t withstand close scrutiny, but that’s the least of it. They should be accompanied by a warning that they may be hazardous to your health. They kill brain cells.

George Will suffers through Obama’s speech at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin so that we don’t have to. Will takes up the arms control thread in Obama’s speech.

Arms control is only one theme in a desultory speech full of bromides that act as a general anesthetic on the conscious mind. Virtually everything in the speech is off. If Obama praised apple pie, he would do so in a way that would make you think there must be a strong case against it if you could only concentrate on what he is saying.

Will takes up Obama’s desire to negotiate nuclear arms reduction with Russia and then notes:

Shifting his strange focus from Russia’s nuclear weapons, Obama said “we can . . . reject the nuclear weaponization that North Korea and Iran may be seeking.” Were Obama given to saying such stuff off the cuff, this would be a good reason for handcuffing him to a teleprompter. But, amazingly, such stuff is put on his teleprompter and, even more amazing, he reads it aloud.

Neither the people who wrote those words nor he who spoke them can be taken seriously. North Korea and Iran may be seeking nuclear weapons? North Korea may have such weapons. Evidently Obama still entertains doubts that Iran is seeking them.

Will doesn’t pause to ask what it means to say that “we can…reject the weaponization that North Korea and Iran may be seeking.” Will credits the statement with meaning, but I’m not sure. Even that is unclear. What dos it mean to “reject weaponization”? I think it means approximately nothing, in line with the rest of the speech.

This, however, means something: “Our efforts against al Qaeda are evolving.” How are they evolving? Obama doesn’t say, but he implies they are evolving from war to a higher form of conflict or conflict resolution. I’m not sure which.

Our efforts against al Qaeda may be evolving, but Obama’s rhetoric is stuck in an antediluvian swamp of meaningless left-wing platitudes.

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