Charles Krauthammer’s Sept. 13 column, “The fruits of epic incompetence,” left me scratching my head, to put it mildly. Krauthammer takes President Barack Obama to task for his recent responses to Syrian President Bashar Assad’s horrific use of chemical weapons against his own citizens. What are Krauthammer’s premises? They are that Obama is consulting the American people and Congress on a matter of immense international importance, while entering into negotiations and a potential partnership with Russia aimed at removing Syria’s stockpile of chemical weapons.
Krauthammer also establishes that this process is fraught with dangers, not the least of which is Russia’s vested interest in the Assad regime. Strangely, Krauthammer concludes that Obama’s efforts represent “diplomacy of epic incompetence.”
So, a leader who exemplifies democratic principles in consulting his citizens and their elected representatives, who exercises reasoned caution when the stakes are high and who explores international diplomacy rather than knee-jerk military action, all of these in the context of a complicated and dangerous situation, is incompetent? I would conclude precisely the opposite.
Thomas R. Wentworth, Raleigh