Wed, 22 Apr 2009 15:02:39 +0000 – By Michael GoodwinColumnist, New York Daily News/FOX News Contributor
In his Monday speech to CIAemployees, President Obamaaimed to assure an agency where some are suspicious of him. His decision to release details of interrogation techniques used on terrorists risked making operatives fearful of political second-guessing and raised fears our enemies would get an advantage.
Against that backdrop, the President expressed one of the more remarkable passages of his young tenure, one worth repeating in full:
"What makes the United Statesspecial, and what makes you special, is precisely the fact that we are willing to uphold our values and our ideals even when it's hard, not just when it's easy; even when we are afraid and under threat, not just when it's expedient to do so. That's what makes us different.
"So, yes, you've got a harder job. And so do I. And that's okay, because that's why we can take such extraordinary pride in being Americans. And over the long term, that is why I believe we will defeat our enemies, because we're on the better side of history.
"So don't be discouraged by what's happened in the last few weeks. Don't be discouraged that we have to acknowledge potentially we've made some mistakes. That's how we learn. But the fact that we are willing to acknowledge them and then move forward, that is precisely why I am proud to be President of the United States, and that's why you should be proud to be members of the CIA."
You don't have to agree with the interrogation disclosures to find sweet music in those words. All the more so because they come from Obama.
I was starting to wonder whether he actually felt that way, whether he is truly proud of our nation and its history.
To read Mr. Goodwin's complete column,click here.