"The belief that peace is desirable is rarely enough to achieve it."

I have the advantage of not having watched or listened to our President’s Nobel Prize acceptance speech. Barack Obama’s mannerisms and speech patterns, his peculiar cadence, must by now detract from the message even for avid followers; if for no other reason than overexposure.

I cannot listen to the man for more than a minute or three. But read, this is a surprising speech. You will find platitudes and code words, of course, but they are relatively few – for an Obama speech, vanishingly few. At least it seems so when insulated from his inflection. And though it raises its cheery face, even the narcissism is confined.

You remain aware you won’t like the methods should he succeed in implementing some of the visionary pabulum. For example, what he really means when he says “institutions” or “investment” is surely discomfiting. Still…

Overall, this was a good speech. It is the first time I’ve even barely suspected President Obama had any sense of American history aside from the community organizing hall of fame. A stronger and more pointed defense of American power and American beneficence has not been mounted by this Administration. The bad guys have never been so chided. The anti-government protesters on the Islamofacist street have been mentioned. Favorably.

That is not saying a lot, I know, and this speech is a thin reed in context. Its concreteness is highly suspect, but it did surprise me. He should be held to it.

The United States of America has helped underwrite global security for more than six decades with the blood of our citizens and the strength of our arms. The service and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform has promoted peace and prosperity from Germany to Korea, and enabled democracy to take hold in places like the Balkans. We have borne this burden not because we seek to impose our will. We have done so out of enlightened self-interest — because we seek a better future for our children and grandchildren, and we believe that their lives will be better if others’ children and grandchildren can live in freedom and prosperity.

It is not long, read it for yourself.