Correction: 9/11 brought us to our knees

You mean we didn’t “absorb” the vicious terrorist attack of 9/11?

That’s wrong? What happened? It brought this country to its knees? It set us back two centuries? It turned us into a bunch of sniveling, bed-wetting crybabies?

Here are a few sentences from Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward, who has published a new book,”Obama’s Wars,” about the vigorous debate among Obama’s team over the way forward in Afganistan:

During an interview with Woodward in July, the president said, “We can absorb a terrorist attack. We’ll do everything we can to prevent it, but even a 9/11, even the biggest attack ever . . . we absorbed it and we are stronger.”

I’m not entirely sure how the rightwing machine would have described the nation’s reaction to 9/11, but it’s certainly going nuts over the way President Obama described it. (As they go nuts over everything he says and does.) Rightwingers are also taking the remarks out of context.

Over at The American Prospect, bloggers Adam Serwer and Jamelle Bouie got it just right.

Said Serwer:

as I wrote this morning, “Chances are, rather than being portrayed as a statement of faith in the American people, this will be cast as a sign of complacency.”

The reaction of Fox News is fairly representative. Earlier they displayed a chyron asking if Obama were “inviting another 9/11,” and guest John Bolton took a break from walking up and down K Street in a sandwich board that says “Bomb Iran” to say this:

I think that may be the most outrageous thing that’s been reported about this book. How can an American president say that as if he’s a detached observer and doesn’t care about Americans dying? I think people have been worried about his qualifications to be commander in chief for a long time, and that ought to prove it.

Basically Republicans are outraged and offended at the notion that the president has enough faith in the courage of the American people that another terrorist attack wouldn’t reduce them to a quivering mass of frightened little children.

Added Bouie:

This is a ridiculous reading of words that don’t actually require much context or interpretation. Indeed, I’m sure that a precocious five-year-old could discern the president’s meaning with minimal effort.

239 comments Add your comment

ByteMe

September 22nd, 2010
2:37 pm

Indeed, I’m sure that a precocious five-year-old could discern the president’s meaning with minimal effort.

And there you have the money quote.

granny godzilla

September 22nd, 2010
2:44 pm

JKL2

September 22nd, 2010
2:45 pm

the president has enough faith in the courage of the American people that another terrorist attack wouldn’t reduce them to a quivering mass of frightened little children.

The idea is to get the other guy to die for his country. I’m sure we can stand more attacks because tomorrow is another day. The question is why would we want to find out?

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
2:48 pm

JKL2, DID YOU READ THE POST? If you did, you know that Obama said he’d do everything possible to prevent another attack.

Stonethrower

September 22nd, 2010
2:48 pm

I will be so glad when we vote in a president the GOP will support on at least something because it sure won’t be this one. I can the GOP stands firm as a group unlike the other party.

granny godzilla

September 22nd, 2010
2:54 pm

From Crooks and Liars on this topic

“no response may be able to match that of Warner Todd Huston, who says in a post on Jim Hoft’s Gateway Pundit blog that “somehow I can’t escape the feeling that this flippancy comes from Obama’s envy that George W. Bush got a ‘big event’ to make his presidency.”

Huston later adds:

I can just see him, green with envy that Bush got that big moment. If ONLY Hussein could get a big attack of his own, why THEN he’d show the world what a great president he could be! If only we could “absorb” a big one like 9/11, eh Barrack [sic]? And we’d take it…. and take it….”

That’s one real sick puppy

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
2:56 pm

Yep, granny@2:54, he is.

Rick Sultana

September 22nd, 2010
3:00 pm

The “right wing” machine? Really, Ms. Tucker. A nation speaking with unanimity does so through coercion. You should welcome descent as you and your ilk will soon be in the political minority.

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
3:02 pm

Rick Sultana@3, If I didn’t welcome dissent, I wouldn’t allow comments on this blog.

Scout

September 22nd, 2010
3:10 pm

Cynthia:

“We can absorb a terrorist attack.”

What’s this “We” stuff ? He’ll be on Air Force One or in the White House Bunker.

A pretty flippant, crass statement if you ask me.

P.S. Why don’t you do another thread on all the problems he is having with his generals.

Kamchak

September 22nd, 2010
3:12 pm

You mean we didn’t “absorb” the vicious terrorist attack of 9/11?

That’s wrong? What happened? It brought this country to its knees? It set us back two centuries? It turned us into a bunch of sniveling, bed-wetting crybabies?

Well, if the truth be told, some in this country were so scared the “the smoking gun is the mushroom cloud,” because “The message is that there are known ‘knowns.’ There are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say there are things that we now know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we do not know we don’t know,” that we invaded a sovereign nation that did not attack us.

Of course, “I can’t tell you if the use of force in Iraq today would last five days, or five weeks, or five months, but it certainly isn’t going to last any longer than that.”

No, wait—

“And it is not knowable if force will be used, but if it is to be used, it is not knowable how long that conflict would last. It could last, you know, six days, six weeks. I doubt six months.”

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
3:12 pm

Scout@3:10, Do you mean to say he’ll be able to predict the exact time and place of the attack and, therefore, he’ll be on Air Force One? That makes you sound like one of the silly “truthers.” What should he have said: It brought us to our knees?

csquared

September 22nd, 2010
3:17 pm

yet if he’d said it changed our lives dramatically, and knocked the entire country for a loop, he’d be accused of giving terrorists encouragement to do it again. Best thing to do is like a hard hit player in the NFL, jump up, dust yourself off and say “yep, that was a pretty good lick but it’s not going to stop me” and keep going strong.

paleo-neo-Carlinist

September 22nd, 2010
3:20 pm

Scout, speaking of flippant and crass; I believe it was Bush who flew from FL to LA to NE to “hunker down” on 9/11, while Darth Cheney was secure at “an unknown location” (bunker). now the Secret Service and the DoD will tell you this is standard operating procedures, so let’s not go speculating as to how a Democrat in office would behave, when we know exactly how the Chickenhawks in office behaved on 9/11.

Booger Sandwich

September 22nd, 2010
3:20 pm

Presidencys are often defined by international events. Deep down inside Obama probably is envious that he has no major incidents, positive or negative, that to date will define is presidency, other than he himself being a colossal failure.

JohnnyReb

September 22nd, 2010
3:22 pm

Another failed attempt by Ms Tucker to defend Obama. A true leader would not state for public consumption that we can absorb another 9/11 type attack. Can we, of course we can. However, when the POTUS states it, the results are a lack of confidence and a negative interpretation.

Obama is weak except for his BS’ng and robin hood skills. The world knows it, especially our enemies. He fiddles while Iran builds a nuke. God knows what N. Korea is up to. And, the Taliban are basically waiting him out in Afghanistan. Much to his surprise, his thoughts of all I have to do is talk to them have proven the failure us who remained conscious knew it would be.

Booger Sandwich

September 22nd, 2010
3:22 pm

“bunch of sniveling, bed-wetting crybabies?”

No…I think it just made Americans a little more selective about this live and let live mentality. And nothing wrong with that mentality unless your so-called friends (Muslims) behave with a live and let die mentality.

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
3:23 pm

JohnnyReb@3:22, So, he should have said, “9/11 knocked us to our knees?” “They beat the crap out of us”?

Scout

September 22nd, 2010
3:23 pm

Cynthia:

Your memory must be fading.

During the last attack (and the next one will probably involve multiple cities) the Secret Service got the POTUS on AF-1 as quickly as possible. Had he been in D.C. he would have been in the White House Bunker ASAP or in a bunker at one of the closest “relocation sites” (and there are many).

The point is that was a knucklehead statement to make ……….. very similar to the one Bush made on that aircraft carrier.

Now I ask you again ……….. please do a thread on the problems he is having with his generals ???

Scout

September 22nd, 2010
3:25 pm

paleo-neo-Carlinist:

You are correct and it is standard operating procedure. So knock of the “we” stuff.

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
3:25 pm

Scout@3:23, What problems is he having with his generals? He sacked one a few months ago. Problem solved.

Chris

September 22nd, 2010
3:26 pm

@Booger Sandwich 3:20 – I don’t know, I think BP well explosion response pretty much was an event that showed the government isn’t the solution to everything, contrary to the views of liberals who think the federal government can wave a magic wand and poof! problems will disappear. Just look how they decried Bush for his Katrina response, but were fairly silent at the inept government response to the BP oil spill. They even tried to blame that one on Bush even though Obama had hired his own MMS director to clean up the agency and had done very little in the 13 months she had been there.

Keep up the good fight!

September 22nd, 2010
3:28 pm

Well of course a statement like “if they make another attack, it will bring us to our knees” definitely would not encourage an attack.

The party of no continues its double time pace into the wilderness of the “party of complete nonsense.”

and of course, no one did ask Scout….who constantly makes statements to attack an entire religion first before “they” attack us–the ultimate in crass and flippant.

Joel

September 22nd, 2010
3:28 pm

I am going to try to sum this one up: Obama=Good, Bush=Bad. Ha! I got it!

paleo-neo-Carlinist

September 22nd, 2010
3:29 pm

CT, here’s the paleo-neo-Carlinist take; we were on our knees before 9/11 and we have been on our knees since. we are a nation of kneelers. 9/11 was a moment in history. it was no different than Dallas in November 1963, Pearl Harbor, the 1929 Stock Market Crash, the 2008 Stock Market Crash, Bunker Hill, Gettysburg, etc. thruthers and pundits (and now bloggers) can opine as to “how did it happen?” but like any moment in history, some Americans were traumatized and others saw dollar signs (political capital included on that balance sheet). the only difference between the US before 9/11 and after is an annual DoD budget that has doubled from $300 billion to $700 billion, the Department of Homeland Security and the Patriot Act. Oh, and we can’t have any containers with liquids or gels in excess of 2 oz. in our carry-on luggage.

Booger Sandwich

September 22nd, 2010
3:30 pm

“nuts over the way President Obama described it. (As they go nuts over everything he says and does.)”

Perhaps. Its kinda like when the Dems had “W” on the ropes and everyone who had any common sense knew the Reps were gonna be out but the Dems kept swinging away at Bush, McCain and Palin.

Its not that Obama is a bad guy. Personally, he is probably quite humorous, entertaining, informative, smart fellow with whom to engage. However, being President isnt his cup of tea and in such a position he shows he is a double-talker and dangerous.

This being the case we, the right, will not stop pummeling Obama until he is o u t OUT.

JohnnyReb

September 22nd, 2010
3:30 pm

JohnnyReb@3:22, So, he should have said, “9/11 knocked us to our knees?” “They beat the crap out of us”?

No, he should have stated something along the line that 9/11 showed the true American spirit of prevailing against all enemies.

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
3:32 pm

JohnnyReb, Did you read the post? Did you understand the context of the conversation?

Joel

September 22nd, 2010
3:32 pm

I wonder if Augusta National offered Obama a membership with the stipulation that he not run for a second term, would he take it?

v5

September 22nd, 2010
3:32 pm

Another day, another phony outrage from those opposing President Obama. People’s inability and unwillingness to interpret information within its context – without filtering through their own biases is becoming the real catastrophe to this country.

Joel

September 22nd, 2010
3:32 pm

CTs favorite comeback, “did you read the post?”.

Chris

September 22nd, 2010
3:33 pm

v5@3:32 – that pendulum swings both ways.

Rick Sultana

September 22nd, 2010
3:33 pm

Ms. Tucker:

My source about Woodward’s book is The Washington Post. It’s pretty damning in itself so we shouldn’t be concerned at your flippant remarks directed at the right-wing or me.

Union

September 22nd, 2010
3:33 pm

maybe black americans should have just “absorbed” lynchings? maybe women should just “absorb” rape? americans should just “absorb” any future terrorist attacks? sounds kind of weird when you put it into that context..

paleo-neo-Carlinist

September 22nd, 2010
3:36 pm

Scout, you’re slipping amigo. the last attack (9/11) involved multiple cities (New York and Washington), and it was launched from multiple cities (DC, NYC/NJ, Boston).

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
3:36 pm

Ah, Union@3:33, Black Americans did “absorb” the lynchings. They didn’t destroy us. Do you know what the word “absorb” means?

JohnnyReb

September 22nd, 2010
3:37 pm

To those that cling to the dream of Obama greatness, including Ms Tucker, I ask that you direct your attention to this past Sunday’s AJC hardcopy, page A 10 where the poll results show that 56% of Georgians disapprove of Obama’s job performance and 8% are unsure. Of course, 88% of the black respondents approve of Obama (they would regardless) but 62% of Independents disapprove also. Ms Tucker, you need to find another champion.

v5

September 22nd, 2010
3:37 pm

@Chris, oh yeah. I should’ve added the part about making constant false equivalencies for you also.

granny godzilla

September 22nd, 2010
3:37 pm

Union

Black american did “absorb” lynchings…..

To make it easy for the folks like you I posted the definition above.

New words and their meanings sometimes sound weird when first added to ones vocabulary.

Scout

September 22nd, 2010
3:37 pm

“Obama is shown at odds with his uniformed military commanders, particularly Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Gen. David H. Petraeus, head of U.S. Central Command during the 2009 strategy review and now the top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan.” TROUBLE IN PARADISE !

“In the end, Obama essentially designed his own strategy for the 30,000 troops” MAYBE HE SHOULD DRAW UP NEXT WEEK’S GAME PLAN FOR THE REDSKINS ?

“… says that the president decided to set a timetable for withdrawing troops from Afghanistan because, he said, “I can’t lose the whole Democratic Party… ” SO THIS IS THE WAY YOU RISK AMERICAN LIVES – BASED ON “PARTY” ?

Keep up the good fight!

September 22nd, 2010
3:38 pm

Union…. lynchings were absorb and black americans endured and fought with nonviolent civil resistance for their civil rights. Many women absorb rape and endure the scars to fight back. Americans absorbed and endured the first attack and fought back.

In all cases, what does not kill us, makes us stronger. But I suppos you think that is weird too.

What sounds weird is your lack of english comprehension and constant attacks without reason or rationality.

granny godzilla

September 22nd, 2010
3:38 pm

Johnny Reb

May I suggest you balance those numbers with the fact that we are 47th in education.

JohnnyReb

September 22nd, 2010
3:39 pm

ctucker @ 3:32 pm
JohnnyReb, Did you read the post? Did you understand the context of the conversation?

Of course I read the post, and yes I understand the context. Do you realize that when Obama does not have a telepromter, he sticks his foot in his mouth and makes stupid statements.

JM

September 22nd, 2010
3:39 pm

Bush read his favorite book, My Pet Goat, to the children. So sweet!

Union

September 22nd, 2010
3:40 pm

@ ctucker.. yes ma’am I do.. and no.. it didn’t destroy blacks.. but blacks fought back.. and even the peaceful marches of Dr King.. were a form of protest..

I honestly would not know how to answer the question myself..

ctucker

September 22nd, 2010
3:40 pm

granny@3:37, When you posted the definitions, I didn’t think they were needed. I’ve changed my mind.

granny godzilla

September 22nd, 2010
3:40 pm

Scout

You mean the President listened to multiple viewpoints? And then
lead the way?

Wow!

That’s such an improvement over the last administration.

Scout

September 22nd, 2010
3:41 pm

Keep up the good fight @ 3:28 :

“and of course, no one did ask Scout….who constantly makes statements to attack an entire religion first before “they” attack us–the ultimate in crass and flippant.”

Show me the quote where I said to physically attack another relgion first ……………

JohnnyReb

September 22nd, 2010
3:42 pm

granny godzilla @ 3:38 pm
Johnny Reb

May I suggest you balance those numbers with the fact that we are 47th in education.

Granny, that is very weak. It smacks of an elitist mentality – never mind the poll, just listen to me!

Scout

September 22nd, 2010
3:42 pm

granny:

Yes ……………. he made a purely political decision while our troops are dying.