Obama is skipping over half of his daily intelligence briefings (PDBs)

From the liberal Washington Post:

President Obama is touting his foreign policy experience on the campaign trail, but startling new statistics suggest that national security has not necessarily been the personal priority the president makes it out to be. It turns out that more than half the time, the commander in chief does not attend his daily intelligence meeting.

The Government Accountability Institute, a new conservative investigative research organization, examined President Obama’s schedule from the day he took office until mid-June 2012, to see how often he attended his Presidential Daily Brief (PDB) — the meeting at which he is briefed on the most critical intelligence threats to the country. During his first 1,225 days in office, Obama attended his PDB just 536 times — or 43.8 percent of the time. During 2011 and the first half of 2012, his attendance became even less frequent — falling to just over 38 percent. By contrast, Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush almost never missed his daily intelligence meeting.

I asked National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor about the findings, and whether there were any instances where the president attended the intelligence meeting that were not on his public schedule. Vietor did not dispute the numbers, but said the fact that the president, during a time of war, does not attend his daily intelligence meeting on a daily basis is “not particularly interesting or useful.”

Please see my previous post on Obama’s top 10 foreign policy failures.

Let’s review the most important one:

Failure #1: No Results In Slowing Or Stopping Iran’s Nuclear Weapons Program

Today, Iran is on the cusp of nuclear weapons capability. Such a capability in the hands of the world’s top terrorist sponsoring state poses the greatest threat facing the United States and our friends and allies, and it risks sparking a nuclear arms race across the Middle East.

Despite promising to “do everything in his power” to stop Iran, four years of President Obama’s irresolute policies have failed to slow the progress of Iran’s program. In fact, that progress has sped up:

  • Fastest Rate Of Enrichment Ever. In 2009, Iran’s enrichment rate of low-enriched uranium was 56 kilograms per month.  That jumped to 116 kilograms per month from November 2011 to February 2012. The enrichment rate now stands at 158 kilograms per month, the fastest rate ever.[1]
  • More Spinning Centrifuges. The total number of spinning centrifuges has gone from 3,936 to 10,477 during Obama’s term. The growth rate of spinning centrifuges went from 112 centrifuges per month before Obama came into office to 152 centrifuges per month during his term.[2]
  • Fordow Underground Enrichment Facility Nearing Completion. The fortified underground facility is 70 percent complete. The number of centrifuges installed has gone from 1,064 in May to 2,140 today. The facility’s limit is 3,000 centrifuges.[3]

The Iranian program has gotten to this point because President Obama has squandered all credibility with the ayatollahs:

  • A Failed Engagement Policy. President Obama offered the ayatollahs “no preconditions” talks, which were rebuffed. The latest round of multilateral talks has produced no results.
  • Refrained From Supporting The Green Movement. When asked during a press conference, President Obama shamefully refused to voice support for Iranian dissidents in 2009 as they were being killed in the streets, saying he did not want to “meddle” in Iran’s affairs.
  • A Weak Sanctions Policy. President Obama opposed and sought to water down crippling sanctions on Iran’s Central Bank until he was forced into them by Congress and our European partners.[4] He then undermined those sanctions by issuing waivers to 20 of the top importers of Iranian oil, including China.[5]
  • Abandoned Missile Defense. He abandoned a European missile defense system meant to protect against Iranian missiles.
  • Undermined The Credibility Of The Military Option. His administration has given the Iranians no reason to believe it is serious about a military option. The administration has repeatedly talked down the effectiveness and advisability of the military option, and seems to have devoted more energy toward preventing an Israeli strike on Iran than toward preventing an Iranian nuclear weapons capability. Obama officials leaked that the administration has focused its efforts on explaining to Israel “the dangers of an Israeli attack” on Iran and has attempted to “make the decision to attack as hard as possible for Israel.”[6] And the President himself, after boldly stating to AIPAC that the United States “has Israel’s back,” changed his tune two days later by saying his statement was “not a military doctrine.”

In the face of such irresolution, the ayatollahs are pressing forward toward nuclear weapons capability without fear of repercussion because they do not believe we are serious.

And now we know why. He’s played golf over a 100 times. He’s in over his head.

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