Ben Johnson,The White House Watch
Although Muammar Qaddafi is still on the loose and no one knows who will replace him in Tripoli,multiple left-wing and “mainstream”media sources lament that President Obama is not getting enough credit for his “success”in Libya. But Obama is by far the worst offender in not giving credit where it is due. The president has refused to address the Veterans of Foreign Wars‘annual convention,or to send a top-tier speaker in his place,for the first time since the organization’s founding.
This contemptuous low represents another regretful historic first of the Obama administration. But it is merely one front of Obama’s hostility toward the military —a lifelong obsession that includes everything from threatening to withhold veterans’pensions,to launching pointless and unconstitutional wars,to denying them the wherewithal to succeed in their mission,to not assuring they have the opportunity to participate at the ballot box.
Obama to the Veterans:Sorry,It’s Not a Campaign Year
VFW National Commander Richard Eubank said,“It is an insult of the highest magnitude that for the first time in the history of the VFW,the White House has apparently decided that this great and iconic organization of combat veterans and all of its members are not worthy of its notice by not at least offering a first-tier speaker from the administration.”
The post has since disappeared from the VFW’s website,because it also criticized Texas governor Rick Perry for not attending the convention. Perry ultimately deigned to “adjust his schedule” and address the gathering.
An unnamed administration official told Fox News that Obama made “every effort”to send a top-tier speaker,but “in all instances,the VFW declined those offers.”But the speakers he offered were less than stellar. He attempted to dispatch such leading lights as United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice,the Air Force secretary,the Air Force chief of staff,and the National Guard director. In the end,he sent no less a celebrity than W. Scott Gould,the Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs,to address the gathering.
However,Obama was not always averse to stumping on the VFW’s platform. Candidate Obama had no trouble addressing the VFW’s 2008 convention in Orlando,just after John McCain spoke there. Obama used the opportunity to accuse milquetoast McCain of questioning his patriotism. (Just a month earlier,Obama had called George W. Bush “unpatriotic”for adding $4 trillion to the national debt in eight years,the same amount he has amassed in less than half the time.) “If we think that we can use the same partisan politics where we just challenge our opponent’s patriotism to win an election,then the American people will lose,”Obama said. “I will let no one question my love of this country.”The New York Times described the 2008 convention attendees’response as “polite but not enthusiastic.”
Obama addressed the VFW again in 2009. He sent Vice President Joe Biden in 2010.
The media have dutifully reported that Barack Obama did not break a 112-convention-long tradition out of disrespect for veterans. Not. At. All. White House spokesman Adam Abrams explained,“The president receives many speaking requests throughout the year,but he is unable to meet them all.”Abrams added,“The president and his administration continue to have deep respect and appreciation for our service members and veterans,and this can be clearly seen in his administration’s policies and actions.”
Obama’s absence from the VFW convention perfectly symbolizes how dismissive his policies have been of veterans’concerns.
Obama’s War Against Veterans
Despite his protests that he adores the military,Obama has consistently threatened veterans’benefits and military pay,jeopardized the functioning of the armed forces,and failed to secure the right of overseas soldiers to vote.
The president made not a whimper when Senate Democrats….