JEFF PEARLMAN

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When a story doesn’t fit the political narrative

Ab rhymes with "Dead."
Abd rhymes with “Dead.”

You probably missed this, but Abd al-Rahman Mustafa al-Qaduli, one of the top ISIS leaders, was killed by a U.S airstrike in Syria earlier this week.

Ol’ Abd was considered to be the terrorist group’s second in command, which means his death is pretty good stuff. In fact, according to the Pentagon and political figures from both parties, we’ve been eliminating ISIS’ top command, one by one by one, in a pretty impactful manner.

Oddly, neither Donald Trump nor Ted Cruz mentioned Abd’s death, or the continued success of operations against ISIS. Which is, truly, weird, because you would think American leaders would celebrate American successes—party loyalty be damned. But that would mean the two men would have to step back from wife shaming, and Obama shaming, and Hillary shaming, to say, “America is doing well at this.” And where’s the sexiness in that?

So, instead, Trump and Cruz continue to try and convince you Barack Obama is a failure when it comes to tackling ISIS. Because he doesn’t strut like a cowboy; because he doesn’t hurl insults; because he doesn’t promise to carpet bomb (Cruz) or nuke (Trump) ISIS—two tactics that would result in pure disaster for our country. Obama doesn’t damn all Muslims to hell, or suggest we need to patrol heavily populated Muslim areas. He doesn’t go sit across from Hannity or Chris Matthews and bemoan the decline of America. He didn’t rush back from Cuba after the Brussels disaster because Cruz said he should rush back for optical sake.

Is he a good president when it comes to foreign policy? Eh, the record’s a bit spotty. But, whether you like him or loathe him, something is truly wrong when we can’t rightly point toward the death of a terrorist leader and say, “America—nice work.”