The latest complaint from Conservative Inc. blogger Dan Riehl is that President Obama — on a visit to Japan — sidestepped a question about the nuclear attack on that country that concluded World War II.
Mr. Riehl writes:
Asked whether or not the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were the appropriate decision, Obama initially ignored the question. Then in an exchange immediately after when reminded of his failure to answer the question, he simply moved on. Evidently that one’s above his pay grade.
Says John Hinderaker at Powerline: “Every time he goes abroad, he embarrasses himself and sells out his country.”
How dismaying that a loud subset of the right so consistently demands that President Obama privilege their childish desire for self-righteous rhetoric above the actual demands of statesmanship. What good would it possibly do to tell the Japanese, “Yes, I think it was right to incinerate your cities”? It wouldn’t do any good. On the other side of the ledger, it would antagonize an allied nation, put its leadership in a difficult spot that might impede its ability to help the United States. President Obama is also endeavoring to slow nuclear proliferation, so it would hardly due to have headlines in Iranian newspapers pointing out that even as he demands that other nations give up nuclear weapons, he is saying that their only actual use in history was justified.
Asked whether the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were justified, President Obama correctly calculated that answering either yes or no would harm American interests, so he gave neither answer, the wisest course available to him, even if it didn’t satisfy the jingoistic vanity of certain critics.