Mark Mardell is still desperately supporting the US President about His behavior regarding Libya. The President still hasn’t made a decision, is in fact hoping the problem is solved for Him, and Mardell is faithfully defending Him.
After explaining how others want action (the Chinese and Russians “have questions”, and Mardell leaves it at that so he doesn’t have to speak a truth which might harm his agenda), he dutifully reports the words of Katty Kay’s personal friend and husband of her business parter, White House spokesman Jay Carney:
“Our position is that action like that should be considered and taken if decided upon in co-ordination with our international partners, because it’s very important in the way that we respond to a situation like we see in Libya, that it be international and not unilateral; that it include the support and participation, for example, of the Arab League and other organisations and countries in the region… precisely so that it is not viewed by those who oppose positive democratic reform as the dictate of the West or the United States.”
Translation: I’m not gonna try it – you try it. Oh, and He’s not George Bush.
Mardell makes the obvious point (granted, part of his job) that sitting on His hands looks bad back home. Then he makes his personal opinion very clear:
It may be grown up, it may be sensible in the long run, but it is so unfamiliar that to many it will look like dithering, not deliberation.
“Grown up” is an editorial appraisal of policy. Of course, by making it epistemic, he probably gets through a loophole in the BBC style guide. But this is so obviously where he stands, especially framed in the context of his other blog posts and reports on the subject in which he comes from the same perspective. Mardell also spells out the correct interpretation for you: it’s “deliberation”, and anyone who thinks otherwise just doesn’t get it.
Why isn’t Mardell asking whether or not the Administration is pressing the Arab League to get off their asses? If, as is alleged here, He would “dearly love” for them to lead the attack on Ghaddafi, surely we’d hear about how much He’s working towards that goal? And wouldn’t Mardell be reminding us of that here, just to support his case that his beloved Obamessiah is actually showing leadership and the fools just don’t see it? If not, one would be forgiven for suspecting that maybe He doesn’t want it to happen at all, or simply has no opinion, and is just waiting for others to do it for Him. Mardell seems uninterested in addressing this obvious point.
Then Mardell spins this against the public and in support of the President:
In a country where some are obsessed with the notion of America’s decline, it will confirm some people’s worst fears.
“Obsessed” is an editorial choice which suggests an excessive, inappropriate, possibly unhealthy attitude. A more accurate and less biased term would be “concerned”. I’d even accept modifying it with “very” or “seriously”, or possibly “overly”, if I’m feeling really generous.
Furthermore, this ignores the argument about the President actually not wanting the US to have such a strong position in the world. In fact, Mardell has been spinning this whole thing away from the idea that it’s, you know, normal for people to want their country to be in the best possible position for economic and security issues. Who wants their country diminished? Why is that considered “grown up”? How maintaining this strong position is achieved (or how one even defines it, I suppose) is of course a topic for another discussion entirely. Here I’m concerned with the idea that people naturally want their country to have the best position possible, and that it’s not right to define this as a being somehow unnatural or incorrect behavior.
The main idea of my last post was that there is a valid reason to be concerned about the President actively wishing to reduce the US’s standing on the world stage. It may be out of a far-Left desire to stop being individuals and let the committee decide what to do, or it might simply be out of a lack of interest and deep understanding of world affairs, and just how much foreign policy can sometimes affect the domestic scene. Either way, it’s a legitimate debate to be had, especially the way He spoke during the election and just how much the BBC and Leftoid media kept telling us that this was pretty much what He was going to do if elected.
Mardell lets the White House get in the last word again, even making sure to tell us that criticism is so bad and unfair that the White House has had to “push back”.
In all, it’s another White House propaganda piece, with personal opinion thrown in, from the BBC’s North America editor.