The only responsible position: You don’t rule out anything. “Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Sunday he would keep all options open for the U.S. military to ‘stamp out’ the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).”


Iraqis chant pro-government slogans and display placards bearing a picture of embattled Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki during a demonstration in Baghdad on Monday.  (Hadi Mizban/Associated Press)

If only we had such a wartime leader in the White House. “Benjamin ‘Bibi’ Netanyahu has plenty of critics, both in his own country and among some hardliners and some doves in American Jewry, and he has been no paragon of virtue in his private life. But there is no doubt that the man is a superb communicator, a canny politician and diplomat, and a remarkably tough, persistent, able leader. . . . When Netanyahu describes Hamas’s use of schools as garrisons, children as human shields, and terror as both means and end in itself, the listener does indeed believe him. When he explains the lengths to which Israel goes to try to avoid civilian casualties, it rings true. When he describes the stakes for Israel, the existential threats it faces, his words and tone are so clear, so concise, so direct, that they cannot be doubted or ignored.” Such is the power of moral clarity.

Only the potential dismemberment of Iraq by the Islamic State could get him out. “It appears that Maliki’s day may be done. There are rumors that even Iran, which in many ways is the strongest political actor in Iraq, at least on the Shiite side, is willing to see him leave office. If that’s the case then Maliki will find it impossible to mount a coup because the militias and sectarian military units he would need would be unlikely to march without the acquiescence of Iran. If, however, Maliki manages to cling to office somehow despite his rampant unpopularity, Iraq is unlikely to survive and all-out civil war becomes more likely. The Obama administration has been doing the right thing by pressing for Maliki’s departure and by standing behind the right of Iraq’s president to nominate a different prime minister.”

Only comedians can capture the pathetic quality of White House leadership these days. John Oliver: “Oh yes, reluctance. It’s always been the best tone for leaders to use when inspiring troops before battle.”

Only Attorney General Eric Holder can keep losing cases on voter identification laws and keep claiming they are discriminatory. “Attorney General Eric Holder suffered a huge loss on Friday in his war on election integrity. A federal judge refused to issue a preliminary injunction against North Carolina’s omnibus election reform law that includes voter ID, as well as measures such as the elimination of same-day registration. In three cases filed by the Justice Department, the NAACP, the League of Women Voters, and a host of other liberal advocacy organizations that had been combined into one case, federal district court Judge Thomas Schroeder ruled that the ‘plaintiffs have not made a clear showing that they are likely to succeed on the merits.’ ”

President Obama only wants to provide humanitarian relief. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) asks about our larger security interests. “President Obama rightly stated that he decided to use military force to protect U.S. diplomats and military personnel in Iraq. But this should not be our only goal. ISIS’s continued rise is not just a problem for Iraq or its neighbors. If we do not continue to take decisive action against ISIS now, it will be not just Iraqis or Syrians who continue to suffer, it will likely be Americans, as a result of a terrorist attack on the U.S. homeland or on our personnel overseas. America was faced with the same choice President Clinton faced in the 1990s during the emergence of al Qaeda: take action now, or we will be forced to take action in the future.”

When only the Europeans sound tough, you know the United States has gone off the rails. “Retired Adm. James Stavridis, the former head of NATO, said the U.S. should send troops to fight on the ground with Kurds and Iraqis against the terrorist group ISIL.”

Jennifer Rubin writes the Right Turn blog for The Post, offering reported opinion from a conservative perspective.