Cotton: President’s ‘war weariness’ projects weakness


WASHINGTON — In a speech to the American Enterprise Institute, U.S. Rep. Tom Cotton on Tuesday blamed President Obama for the public’s growing war weariness.

“The American people are war weary and it cannot be surprising though when our Commander in Chief is the weariest of them all,” the Dardanelle Republican said.

Cotton was invited to deliver a keynote speech Tuesday at the think tank on the eve of the 12th anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks. Cotton served in Iraq and Afghanistan, and has been a strong supporter of continued U.S. efforts against what he describes as “radical Islamists.”

Cotton is also the only member of the Arkansas congressional delegation backing Obama’s call for a military strike against Syria over its reported use of chemical weapons.

In his 25-minute address, Cotton was critical of Obama for avoiding “the language of victory and defeat,” which he said projects an image of weakness that encourages al Qaeda and its supporters.

Cotton said political leaders have a responsibility to be candid about global threats, particularly al Qaeda.

“The American people need to know this threat is real and gathering,” he said.

Likewise, Cotton said he opposes automatic spending cuts that are falling heavily on the military. The “sequestration” cuts, he said, threaten national security.