War/Not War?: Is John Kerry as Stupid as He Sounds? You Be the Judge


Via Instapundit comes a link to this stunning report from The Hill:

Secretary of State John Kerry wants you to know that whatever it is you call it when you drop bombs on people you want to kill, send troops and advisers to foreign lands to kill and train people, it isn't war.

"What we are doing is engaging in a very significant counterterrorism operation," Kerry said. "It's going to go on for some period of time. If somebody wants to think about it as being a war with ISIL, they can do so, but the fact is it's a major counterterrorism operation that will have many different moving parts."

In a separate interview with CBS News, Kerry also rejected the word "war" to describe the U.S. effort and encouraged the public not to "get into war fever" over the conflict.

"We're engaged in a major counterterrorism operation, and it's going to be a long-term counterterrorism operation. I think war is the wrong terminology and analogy but the fact is that we are engaged in a very significant global effort to curb terrorist activity," Kerry told the network.

"War is the wrong terminology and analogy?"

That's beyond sad—it's insulting to the intelligence of us all.

And, more important, it's the sort of doublespeak whose obfuscations pave the way to greater and greater involvement while pretending the exact opposite.

If what Obama says we're about to do in Iraq and Syria to ISIS isn't war, then why not send "boots on the ground," as former CIA and NSA director Michael Hayden and a growing chorus of elected officials are calling for? Why did Obama argue last year that he needed congressional authorization to do the same thing to Syria?

Instapundit suggests that Kerry doesn't want to call it a war because we might lose it. I actually think it's because the administration is delusional and mistakes its ability to rename things via clever word games for material reality. Which is far more troubling than simple cowardice or deceit. Certainly nothing Kerry has said in his new gig argues that he has a robust sense of reality testing.