ABOUT SOME PRESIDENTS - BRIEFLY
by Andy Weddington
Sunday, 02 March 2014
"Put it briefly before them so they will read it, clearly so they will appreciate it, picturesquely so they will remember it, and, above all, accurately so they will be guided by its light." Joseph Pulitzer
This morning's brief commentary awakened me from sleep (this morning). As best I recall and in keeping with Mr. Pulitzer's opening thought...
President Abraham Lincoln knew the word brief but took 'field reports' while fighting the Civil War. He gave sincere, powerful speeches that were brief. President Lincoln did not worry so much about the Russians.
President Woodrow Wilson saw America and the Russians on the same side, briefly, during World War I. Russia left the Alliance.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in office far longer than briefly, fought World War II with the Russians amongst the Allies.
Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon B. Johnson had their hands full with the Russians. President Kennedy, compared to the time in office of President Eisenhower and President Johnson, served only briefly. But, President Kennedy was briefed constantly during the Cuban Missile Crisis and stared down the Russians while, briefly, the world was on edge; the brink of nuclear disaster.
Presidents Richard M. Nixon, Gerald Ford, and Jimmy Carter played nuclear chess with the Russians. Those were dangerous times, though briefly in the grand scheme of time.
President Ronald Reagan, holding such great respect for the presidency, always entered the Oval Office in coat and tie. He listened, carefully, to his daily National Security Brief, and acted. President Reagan defeated the Russians.
President George H. W. Bush carried on the work of President Reagan - trying to help Russia move towards democracy. His time in office was too brief, he believed. So do others.
President William J. Clinton did not always wear a coat and tie into the Oval Office. Who knows what he did with the Russians because the media was distracted with his clothes (or lack thereof). For, whatever his attire, he wore briefs - which he had difficulty keeping on (even in the Oval Office). And President Clinton - carrying the moniker "Bubba" - is rumored to have tried to donate his (stained) briefs for a tax deduction. That fits. Sigh.
President George W. Bush thought he, albeit briefly, saw into the soul of the Russian leader President Vladimir Putin. President Bush was wrong.
Now America has President Barack Obama.
President Obama, reportedly, often does not take his National Security Brief; was caught on a hot mic (before the 2012 election) whispering, briefly, contentious and some believe treasonous words to a Russian diplomat (for relay to President Putin); was too busy to take an emergency brief during the attack on Benghazi - four Americans, including an Ambassador, were murdered; appears a weakling to President Putin; enjoys exotic vacations, Happy Hours, golf, voicing hollow warnings and drawing meaningless red lines (e.g., Syria and now Ukraine); all whilst the Russians are running amok threatening the world.
The Russian word for briefly is: KPATKO
And that's about as briefly as I can Putin words.
No need for Post Script, the idea was to keep it brief.