BY ADEYEMI OSHUNRINADE
When hell broke loose in Egypt and Libya over the movie with a false depiction of Prophet Mohammed and Islam, the GOP candidate Mr. Romney quickly seized on the opportunity to criticize the President’s statement made before the attack, calling for calm over the protests that ensued. He said, “It is 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.”
There is no doubt that with such a statement, Mr. Romney aimed to garner support and draw votes by launching an unwise and unpresidential attack on the President. He chose to inject partisan politics to the situation at a time when United States foreign offices in Libya and Egypt were under attack by radicals, a time when the Obama administration was making efforts to protect its interests and diplomats working in those nations, Mr. Romney thought it would be a great idea to portray the President as weak and as a leader with sympathy for those who wage war against America. The GOP candidate, went as far as saying the President had “sympathy” with extremist’ cause, a false allegation, which should not be coming from one aspiring to be a United States President.
Watching Mr. Romney say such things makes one to question whether the candidate has the quality of a good leader, or what is expected of one willing to be the leader of a nation considered the most recognized democracy in the world. Mr. Romney may have been misinformed when he released the critical statement, in fact, the U.S. embassies in Egypt and Libya came under attack after the President made his statement, and the attacks that led to deaths of the four Americans came in the late hours of September 11 not before the President’s statement but because of his desperation for votes, the candidate could not wait to gather the facts before unleashing his campaign tactic of event twisting on the President.
Call it a wrong move by the GOP candidate; it is a strategy that hardly works because it calls into question a candidate’s ability and intellect to manage a tense situation most especially, when a nation’s foreign interest is at stake as we have in this case. Mr. Romney elected to antagonize the President on his foreign policy strategy but he failed to reveal his own policy positions as a better and worthwhile contrast to the President’s ideology. Mr. Romney is eager to critique the President but yet unwilling to tell America how he would have handled the situation if he were president or would he rather go immediately with troops on the ground?
Romney is a good businessman but he may be running a doomed campaign for President already. America wants a leader not a business manager; that job has been taken over by the Treasury Secretary and Chairman of the Federal Reserve, moreover, businesses do fail but a leader who is willing to embrace diplomacy while dealing with a tense and delicate foreign policy issue rarely fails.
Romney may have gone too far with his statement; his campaign tactic sometimes depicts political narratives that are far from reality. The highly reprehensible movie in question, was put together by some misguided elements who think it is proper and morally right to speak blasphemy of another religion so, would it have been right for President Obama to condone their sense of moral irresponsibility? Or should the President Support people like the “Reverend” Terry Jones who once advocated for burning of the Quran?
Maybe Mr. Romney needs to step back a little and reevaluate his campaign strategies. The competitive nature of the candidate and the urge to beat Obama “come what may,” are likely responsible for the political rhetoric emanating from his campaign. The President said in the Rose Garden, “no excuse for the actions of this murderous mob in Libya or for the invasion of the embassy in Egypt. Reports are emerging that the Benghazi siege was a premeditated attack by our enemies; with the radical Muslims, there is a kind of connection between the crazy guys in Florida who make this film and the crazy guys in Libya who plan this attack deliberately and use the film as an excuse, a provocation;” “There is a kind of demonic conspiracy between these two types of fringe groups, and it makes life less secure for the rest of us.”
How in the world is a statement like that designed to offer sympathy to radicals who attacked the embassies. It is no doubt a dishonest attempt to turn the table and draw support from the incumbent to the candidate; it is a bad strategy at a time when the nation is hurting over the death of four Americans who were badly murdered. Perhaps, it is time for the people to think deeply and decide whether or not Mr. Romney is Presidential, the controversy may have been his “amateurish hour.”
Dr. Adeyemi Oshunrinade [E. JD] is the author of ‘Wills Law and Contests,’ ‘Constitutional Law-First Amendment’ and ‘SAVING LOVE’ a newly published fiction. Follow on Twitter@san0670.