Bob Woodward on Obama’s ISIS Strategy: ‘There’s An Inconsistency Here’

Appearing on Fox News Sunday, veteran journalist Bob Woodward had some harsh words for the Obama Administration over it’s handling of the terrorist group ISIS. 

Speaking on Sunday, August 24, Woodward blasted the White House for having a confusing message on how to combat the terrorist group, insisting “there's an inconsistency here. I mean, Hagel and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs have said -- and Kerry, the Secretary of State, made it very clear, all options are on the table, and the president has said no boots on the ground.” [See video below.]

Woodward’s comments came in response to moderator Chris Wallace wondering “what do you make of the president's advisers getting so far out ahead of where he is on confronting ISIS in both Syria and Iraq, and do you think in the end he's going to authorize a full-scale campaign?”

The Washington Post reporter continued his criticism of the Obama Administration and called for them to establish a coherent foreign policy strategy to fight ISIS: 

You need two things. Leadership. He's got to step up and say, I'm in charge. This is what we're doing. And the second element is strategy. He needs to lay out a plan and say, this is how we're going to get to some point that there's political agreement on. 

Following President Obama’s claim that ISIS was a “JV team” the media has begun to take notice that ISIS is a much greater threat than the president had previously claimed. Woodward’s sharp criticism of President Obama having a weaker response to ISIS than his own advisors is potentially a growing trend for a media that has done its best to provide cover for this White House.

See relevant transcript below. 


Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace

August 24, 2014

CHRIS WALLACE: And it’s time now for our Sunday group. GOP strategist Karl rove. Bob Woodward of "The Washington Post" Radio talk show host Laura Ingraham. And Fox News Political Analyst Juan Williams. Bob, I want to ask you the same question I asked Senator McCain. What do you make of the president's advisers getting so far out ahead of where he is on confronting ISIS in both Syria and Iraq, and do you think in the end he's going to authorize a full-scale campaign? 

BOB WOODWARD: Well, you don't know what he's going to do. He wants to -- he -- one key point about Obama is he doesn't like war, and he's trying to avoid the next one. But let's not kid ourselves. There's an inconsistency here. I mean, Hagel and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs have said -- and Kerry, the Secretary of State, made it very clear, all options are on the table, and the president has said no boots on the ground.

And this is kind of a moment for Obama where -- and I think in this case McCain had it exactly right. You need two things. Leadership. He's got to step up and say, I'm in charge. This is what we're doing. And the second element is strategy. He needs to lay out a plan and say, this is how we're going to get to some point that there's political agreement on.

Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center.