Before dashing off to compere a gala concert and awards show, President Obama found time to address his fellow Americans. The topic was terrorism, an obvious reason to fire up the AutoCue after the San Bernardino massacre, although Americans may have been mystified at the president’s entreaties that non-Islamic citizens refrain from attacking Muslims, as if waves of rednecks were crying “John Wesley is great!” and raging through neighbourhoods where veiled women are common. Obama would say that.
New criterion editor and Quadrant contributor Roger Kimball was unimpressed, along with American pollsters, who report the majority perception among voters is that master of ceremonies-cum-president is way out his depth:
Barack Obama’s speech about America’s response to terrorism last night was only the third speech Obama has given from the Oval Office. In contrast to his last performance there — when he announced we had finally found and killed Osama bin Laden — the mood this time was somber. The slaughter of those innocents in San Bernardino by Muslim terrorists last week, coming as it did on the heels of the slaughter in Paris by Muslim terrorists last month, confirmed what anyone with a shred of common sense has long known: terrorism circa 2015 is overwhelming perpetrated by Muslims.
Are all of the world’s billion Muslims, one-sixth of the global population, terrorists? Of course not, but the overwhelming majority of the world’s terrorists and supporters of terror are Muslims, and this fact completely undercuts the central premise of Barack Obama’s speech last night.
Obama says that the atrocity committed in California last week was carried out not by faithful Muslims, but by outliers following a “perverted” interpretation of Islam. Followers of the Islamic State, he said, do “not speak for Islam.”
Let’s pause to ask: Who does speak for Islam?
Kimball’s thoughts can be read in full via the link below.