Remember That Time Ronald Reagan Shot Down An Iranian Airliner? That Was Awesome


Following last week's shooting down of Malaysia Airlines flight MH 17, Fox News has been very busy criticizing Barack Obama for his completely insensitive actions in continuing on a fundraising tour, even though America's national security was clearly at stake following the event (which may also have beenjust a distraction from the border crisis). After all, said the Foxies, Ronald Reagan didn't go out on a fundraising tour when the USSR shot down a Korean Airlines 747 in 1983! He gave a very stern speech about the incident, which Fox showed clips of. Stupid Obama should have been more like Reagan, say Fox hosts like Megyn Kelly, Sean Hannity, and others. Which we suppose means that instead of immediately calling the Malaysian airliner shootdown an "outrage of unspeakable proportions," Obama should have stayed on vacation for four days like Reagan did.

Media Matters points out that at least one Fox anchor, Chris Wallace, who was covering Reagan for NBC in 1983, had the decency to call out his colleagues at Fox for distorting history, which probably means Chris Wallace is a communist or something:

I know there's like an immediate reaction, that you want to say he should have run back to Washington and gone back to the Situation Room. I know that a lot of folks at Fox here are saying that. As somebody who covered the White House and saw for six years Ronald Reagan in various situations, sometimes the best thing presidents can do is nothing, to continue on. If he had gone back to Washington and gone to the situation room -- first of all, there's not much he can do, we're not in control of the situation. And it would have dialed it up. [...]

I was covering Ronald Reagan at that time. He was in Santa Barbara at his ranch when that happened, and quite frankly he didn't want to leave. And his advisers realized how terrible this looked, and eventually persuaded him he had to fly back to Washington and had to give this speech to the nation, but it did take him four days.

Clearly, Wallace's insistence on "reality" makes him the odd man out at Fox, and it's really quite disgraceful to think that Barack Obama going to a fundraiser is anything comparable to Ronald Reagan staying on vacation for four days, because as we all know, Reagan deserved his rest and Barack Obama admits that he's "lazy."

Strangely unmentioned by either Fox or Media Matters was that one time in 1988 when America shot down an Iranian airliner, killing 290 people. Ronald Reagan didn't do a primetime speech on that one, of course, because the U.S. doesn't deliberately shoot down airliners -- we were really sad about the loss of life, but we were also really sure it was an Iranian F-14 fighter before we fired on it (in fact, the commander and missile officer on the USS Vincennes got medals for their excellent performance). Even though the jet's transponder signal identified it as a civilian plane. In fact, the U.S. has never formally apologized to Iran for that one, although we did pay out $131.8 million in a settlement to discontinue a case in the International Court of Justice. No apology needed there, because it was a war zone, and mistakes were made.

In summary, you really have to agree that Barack Obama has not handled this anything like Ronald Reagan did. He needs to get to a beach immediately.

[Media Matters / WaPo]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.


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