As Romney slithered away from the press podium smirking after accusing President Obama of apologizing for "American values," I wondered, how many times does Romney get a chance to fail at ostensibly demonstrating his foreign policy "skills"? Remember President Obama's statement: Romney "seems to have a tendency to shoot first, aim later."
The answer is that at least three times in less than a year, Romney has interjected himself into delicate foreign policy matters while our government was working to handle the events or was involved in negotiations. Romney did not act based on intelligence information that was available to our President, or take the time to connect any dots to determine what was happening and how best to resolve. Romney acted based on snippets of media reports as events were continuing to unfold and based his actions on his own personal values, assumptions and partisan agenda with his desperate efforts to save his drowned campaign.
In this latest Romney SNAFU, Romney crossed so many lines, including accusing the "Obama administration" of giving sympathy to people in other countries who attacked a part of our government, a diplomatic mission in Libya. This sounds very close to accusing President Obama of giving aid and comfort to persons who attacked and murdered U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens and 3 colleagues by issuing this statement when some persons were in the process of "attacking the United States."
In late March, Mitt said Russia was "without question, our number 1 geopolitical foe." Colin Powell responded with a warning that Mitt's foreign policy advisers are "quite far to the right" and their recommendations to Mitt "should get a second thought." In fact, Powell's response to Mitt's judgment about Russia: "Come on think. That isn't the case."
"After all, you don't call Russia our No. 1 enemy — not al Qaeda, Russia — unless you're still stuck in a Cold War mind warp," Obama said during his speech at the Democratic National Convention.How did Russia respond?
President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday that a comment made by U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney has made Russia feel justified in opposing America's missile defense plans in Europe.So, "Putin Thanks Romney for Calling Russia No. 1 Foe."
The Republican challenger to President Barack Obama has branded Russia the "No. 1 geopolitical foe" of the United States.
Putin said that statement shows Russia is right to criticize the U.S.-led NATO plan to place land- and sea-based radars and interceptors in several European locations. Washington says the shield is intended against a possible missile attack from Iran, but Moscow sees it as a threat to its security, saying it may eventually grow powerful enough to undermine Russia's nuclear deterrent.
Putin said in remarks carried by Russian news wires that Romney's statement has "strengthened Russia's positions in talks on this important and sensitive subject," but added that he would work with Romney if he's elected.
Last Spring, there was an intense and difficult diplomatic negotiation with Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng to obtain his safe release.
As Rachel Maddow described, "while U.S. officials were engaged in intense and very delicate negotiations" over Chen's fate, Romney attacked Obama administration's handling of the situation. Romney's attack was based on public reports while the crisis was happening. Romney charged on the afternoon of May 3rd:
Our embassy failed to put in place the kind of verifiable measures that would assure the safety of Mr. Chen and his family. If these reports are true, this is a dark day for freedom and a day of shame for the Obama administration.Even conservative Bill Kristol rebuked Mitt as "foolish" for injecting himself into a fast moving crisis with ongoing, "delicate negotiations."
Eight hours after Romney's attack, the U.S. announced an agreement had been reached to allow Chen and his family to come to the U.S..
Now we have Libya and Egypt. While the two diplomatic missions in Libya and Eygpt were still under attack and/or protested, Romney released his statement that attacked President Obama and our diplomatic personnel:
It's disgraceful that the Obama administration's first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.Romney was referring to the U.S. embassy in Cairo issuing a statement that condemned the anti-Muslim video that later triggered protests.
Once again, Romney did not know the facts. The Cairo statement was issued 6 hours before "those attackers even breached the embassy's walls." The statement was not a reaction to the protests, but was issued before any protesting in an effort to calm down events.
The next day, after it was clear that Chris Stevens and 3 colleagues were killed, in what is now reported to be a grenade attack, Romney accused President Obama of apologizing for "American values." Rachel Maddow pointed out the obvious to Mitt: Romney was attacking our President and diplomatic missions while the attack against parts of our government was still going on.
Rachel pointed out how Republicans charged Romney, among other things, was "incompetent" about talking about foreign policy.
This is the 3rd time in one year that Romney tried to interject himself into delicate foreign policy matters being handled by our President. While the GOP is no believer of facts, the public is now seeing the importance of facts.
Romney, acting on falsehoods, tried to turn a tragedy into a political sword, not caring at all about the lives affected.
I keep asking myself, what if Romney had been president now? Given that Romney's foreign policy team is jam-packed with neo-conservative smirkers, and that Romney bases his decisions on hatred and racism, and views the U.S. government as a company that simply needs to be aggressive to compete in our world, it scares me that this man is even a candidate.