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12 January 2015

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William R. Cumming

The Europeans [new or old] are not trusted by the US!

Perhaps unexpressed there is a below the horizon belief by many Americans that the current Islamic terrorism onslaught is the third wave since 1914 that the US has to drag Europeans from destruction.

Of course this belief is stoked by Americans who believe that the US FP could not be anything but blameless for any of the world's problems.

Agree with P.L.!

Matthew

Col: So why didn't the President attend? The security issues appear to be nonsense, as evidenced by this re-tweet from Ian Bremmer. See https://twitter.com/ianbremmer/status/554633676785729536

France deserves a lot more than this.

Margaret Steinfels

The Bibi/Abbas appearance wasn't pre-ordained!
From The Jewish Daily Forward:

http://forward.com/articles/212537/why-benjamin-netanyahu-attended-paris-anti-terror/

DC

Well, it IS a long flight. Here's a list of world leaders who attended the Paris rally:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/List-of-leaders-to-attend-Paris-rally/articleshow/45843350.cms

Australia also got hit recently, but they didn't go. Canada didn't send its head of state. South America - zilch.

Not sure the criticism of the President (this time) has any merit.

oofda

Correct- Bill Clinton would have been an excellent choice. BTW, the French tried to disuade Bibi from attending. Hollande let it be known that it would be better if Netenyaho didn't attend. The French didn't want Bibi to turn this into an election event. When Bibi found out other Isreali pols were going, he decided to go as well. That requried the French to invite Abbas-who was seen marching front and center along with Bibi. His move somewhat backfired.

http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/.premium-1.636557

http://www.haaretz.com/news/israel-election-2015/.premium-1.636644

ex-PFC Chuck

Headline on Haaretz: "Hollande asked Netanyahu not to attend Paris memorial march"

Hollande caved, but made it clear that Abbas would be invited as well. Afterwards, Netanyahu's press office cropped Abbas out of the picture.

http://www.haaretz.com/mobile/.premium-1.636557?v=D9B18F0B6D785F827EDA7137FD551BC6

http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/news/headlines-breaking-stories/280178/netanyahu-crops-out-pa-president-abbas-from-photo-released-of-world-leaders-at-paris-rally.html

Fred

Col.,

But they did send Victoria Nuland. I'm sure that went well with the EU member heads of state. I hope they issue an apology for the apology too:
"... there wasn't enough time for the "onerous and significant" security work that needed to take place ahead of a presidential visit, Earnest said. He said Obama's presence also would have meant extra restrictions on the people who were there."

That is just an unbelievable excuse.

The Beaver

Margaret

Pretty sure , the white shirt philosopher BHL must have advised Bibi to attend.

oofda

Fred,
Not unbleievable- if you ever have worked with the Secret Service on Presidentail visit overseas. They put restirictions upon and place requirements that other heads of state don't. Not saying that is not without good reason, but when a POTUS attends an event, the secuirity requirements go up signifcantly. This event, planned on short notice, would have presented a nightmare for the Secret Service and D.S. However, Biden or Kerry well could have attended.

BabelFish

Remind me of how many US former presidents attended Anwar Sadat's funeral. I seem to remember Jimmy Carter, Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. And this was in a country where the leader had just been publicly assassinated.

This is from the NYT: UNITED STATES Secretary of State Alexander M. Haig Jr. Defense Secretary Caspar W. Weinberger Former President Jimmy Carter Rosalynn Carter Former President Gerald R. Ford Former President Richard M. Nixon Jeane J. Kirkpatrick, chief United States delegate to the United Nations Gen. Edward C. Meyer, Army Chief of Staff Former Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger Sol M. Linowitz, former special envoy to the Middle East. Senator Strom Thurmond Senator Charles H. Percy Senator Claiborne Pell Representative Jim Wright Representative Clement J. Zablocki Representative William S. Broomfield Sam Brown, a 14-year-old boy who once visited Egypt as Mr. Sadat's guest Stevie Wonder, the singer-composer, Walter Cronkite, the former CBS News anchorman.

http://www.nytimes.com/1981/10/10/world/officials-from-around-the-world-attending-sadat-s-funeral.html

george

ARE THE PRESIDENT OF THE U.S. AND HIS SECRETARY OF STATE INCOMPETENT OR ARROGANT? Do they not give a damn?

PirateLaddie

It's ultimately a political decision. I was involved in a GHWB event on the road when he was VP. All his country-club hangers on warned me that he would "never, ever" take up the offer of another country's president to overnight at the "presidential palace" during a state visit. The boys at WHCA knew better & we did a walk thru to make sure the commo side was doable. It was. Bush was invited to overnight & he most graciously accepted. 'Course that was 30 years ago, but politics, while not beanbag, is still politics.

jerseycityjoan

DC,

I was wondering who else went. No one from Asia, no one from North or South America, according to the list at the link. As you said, it's a long flight.

As many pointed out in the media yesterday, there were numerous leaders there who do not have free speech in general in their own countries plus those who limit free speech on controversial political and social issues.

Frankly I'd be thrilled if the top people there talked among themselves about what they intend to do about terrorism in their own countries and how they can work together using the resources they have or that they should obtain using their own money and employing their own people. Had we been a major presence, those conversations would not be the same, would they?

All I can say is that I was stunned to see this was a controversy today. I am pretty much with DC on this one. I am more concerned about what's going to be done, by other countries and by us. Certainly things seem to be heating up. This may well not be the only incident in the West in 2015. I sure hope I am wrong.

turcopolier

JCB and DC

Even Obama's WH admits they screwed up by not sending a senior representative. pl

jerseycityjoan

Yes, I noticed that too.

I am wondering if they are really having second thoughts or is it because they're getting heat now, which makes me sound like I'm trying to cling to my opinion but I am not. I don't even have an opinion; I didn't care who we sent before and I just don't care now either.

Time will tell. The rest of you may be right.

Stephanie

DC,

I can understand Obama not going himself, given the security drama that would have entailed, but not sending a high-ranking subordinate was a clear unforced error. The CNN item posted by Col. Lang notes that Eric Holder was actually in Paris (!) Bad manners.

It is possible to make too much of it, however.

BabelFish

George: Yes, Yes and Yes.

tv

No golf.
No money.
No Hollywood people.

DC

Sir,

The fact that a group of morons says something dumb says little for whether I should take their excuses seriously. I try to look at events as they are; and with this one, I see little material reason to send our Head of State or his Second to a photo-op. The whole thing ginned-up controversy. I'm surprised realists are following the tune.

At most, the our morons should have instructed Holder to stand next to Netanyahu in solidarity with Abbas and the other clowns. If there are any adults left, they should have been locked in discussions on how to hold off the Fifth Column.

different clue

Oofda,

It seems unbelievable as an excuse coming from this particular President because he has imposed his uniquely onerous security presence on others whenever his little heart has desired. Unless I am wrong, I don't believe past Presidents have demanded the level of street closures, regional lockdowns, etc. which this President apparently demands and clearly gets. (If I am wrong about that, then my impression is just anti-Obama bitterness-driven and not as useful as I think it is).

Fred

oofda,

I haven't; however there are times when maximum security desires of the Secret Service should be set aside for affairs of state. I'm sure the President of France would not want to be assassinated any more than Obama would. At the very least a weekend in Delaware by the VP could have be delayed.

SR WOOD

DC,
I have to agree with you. If the White House says they screwed up and someone from the administration should have gone I will take them at their word. As in all things, sometime things just get screwed up. Are we providing the French with all the help they need, I hope so and would expect it of this administration.

smoke

BClinton would have been the likely representative - not such an overshadowing personal or security presence as a current president or vp. And he is recognized by much of the world, so good for ceremonial photo-op. But he had a previous engagement - as guest of honor at a $6M fundraiser for Haiti, in Beverly Hllls.
Kerry was on a state visit to India, with a side trip today to Islamabad. Biden - no public schedule through today/Monday. Is he sick? VP security is probably almost as intrusive as the presidential contingent. Hagel is virtually emeritus. Then who goes? Power? Rice? Boehner?

rjj

CorpsMedia is giving more coverage to what Obama didn't do than to what Bibi did do?

LeaNder

could it be that Holder went because there was apparently some type of European/American security talks?

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/01/11/us-france-shooting-security-idUSKBN0KK0DR20150111

Maybe Europeans are now more willing concerning surveillance? This is a legal issue too.

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