In September, 2001, Rudolph Giuliani was the mayor of New York City, when terrorists attacked and destroyed the World Trade Center Twin Towers. Giuliani put his whole effort into taking care of his city, its employees and residents. Compare that to what Giuliani called President Obama’s “Laissez faire” attitude both before and during his junket to Cuba.
The former Mayor is critical of Obama’s lack of action. Giuliani said that after Tuesday’s terrorist attacks in Brussels, the president should have left Cuba and returned to Washington. But Obama did not return, he was missing in action, choosing instead to remain in Cuba to watch a baseball game, just as all hell was breaking out in home of NATO headquarters.
Speaking on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Wednesday morning, Giuliani said he found the photographs of Obama smiling and having a good time with Communist leader Raul Castro utterly repugnant.
In a sharp rebuke to the commander-in chief’s lack of leadership, Giuliani said, “Imagine if there was a picture of the president of France laughing during September 11. How would we feel about that?” He suggested the American people would have seen that image as someone who had simply dismissed himself from being near a crisis of one of our longest European allies.
Asked what he would have done, Giuliani said “Here’s what I would have done. I would have immediately left, gotten the national security staff together and said, ‘When I wake up tomorrow morning, I want a complete plan on how we destroy ISIS.'” He was obviously not happy that Obama, when told of the attack, spoke about the attacks for less than a minute during a 34-minute speech in Cuba for less than a minute , then later attended an inconsequential baseball game.
This is not the first time that the president has shown a complete lack of leadership when something terrible happened. It is not unlike his infamous Martha’s Vineyard vacation when he was briefed on the beheading of American hostage James Foley. On that occasion, Obama expressed his outrage to reporters and then the Secret Service whisked him away to a round of golf.
Joe Scarborough said to his guest Giuliani, “You look at what happened after Paris, his listless response, his weak response made Americans say, ‘Why can’t our president be as tough as France’s president? That’s something never said and has actually contributed to the rise of Donald Trump.”
Obviously, Giuliani has his critics on the left side of politics, but it isn’t only Giuliani’s opinion that the president’s optics were catastrophic. Others who have commented on this, besides Joe Scarborough are Nicole Wallace, former communications director for President George W. Bush, and Admiral James Stavridis.
Former CIA director, General Michael Hayden suggested that the reason Obama did nothing other than mention the Brussels attack is not that he is showing weakness, but that his policy is to minimize these issues and concentrate on what he thinks are more important matters.
It has been noted that Obama’s action is reminiscent of President George W. Bush’s action in 2001 when he remained in a classroom for a while after learning of the 9/11 attacks., In Bush’s case, it was an effort to keep the young children from hearing the shocking news Immediately afterwards, he was in touch with the White House and the military as he struggled to get back to Washington as quickly as possible.
In this instance, Obama had no way of knowing when he went to the baseball game whether there were any Americans killed in Brussels.