Obama and the Pirates: Hardly a "Military Victory"

Let's not inflate the daring rescue of Capt. Richard Phillips into a "military victory."


By John Aloysius Farrell, Thomas Jefferson Street blog

Not to take anything away from the superb marksmanship and derring-do of the U.S. Navy Seals.

Or President Obama's cool willingness to take the shot.

But let's not inflate the rescue of Capt. Richard Phillips into something more than it is.

The morning paper, in a story with the headline "An Early Military Victory For Obama," somewhat breathlessly reports that "a dramatic and successful rescue operation by US Special Operations forces left Obama with an early victory that could help build confidence in his ability to direct military actions abroad."

Yeah, maybe. If retaking a captured lifeboat can be described as a "military victory."

The caveat, offered later in the story, is probably more accurate and relevant:

"The operation pales in scope and complexity to the wars underway in Iraq and Afghanistan. And Obama's adversaries are unlikely to be mollified by his performance in a four-day hostage drama."

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