NORFOLK, Va. — Sarah Palin on Sunday painted President Barack Obama's administration as a cowering giant intent on surrendering the nation's mantle as a superpower and willing to sell out its allies.
The former John McCain running mate addressed a paying audience of several hundred people in Norfolk and accused Obama of selling out ally Israel in over its naval blockade of Gaza and treating Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shabbily.
On May 31, Israeli naval commandos killed nine pro-Palestinian activists in clashes aboard a Turkish ship headed for Gaza, setting off a world outcry and forcing Israel to ease its three-year-old blockade.
She also said Obama lacked the resolve to stand up to Russia and China.
"Do they think, really, that we're getting anything in return for all this bowing and kowtowing and apologizing? No, we don't get anything positive in return for this," Palin said at the event spearheaded by a Norfolk talk radio station.
"So while President Obama is getting pushed around by the likes of Russia and China, our allies are left to wonder about the value of an alliance with our country any more. They're asking what is it worth," she said.
Palin, former Virginia Sen. George Allen and Iran-Contra figure Oliver North, who ran for a Virginia Senate seat and lost, each took turns decrying what they said was the deterioration of U.S. military might and will under Obama's watch.
Palin said that Obama and an allied Democratic Congress had cut military spending while showing no such restraint on other expenditures, running up trillions in new deficits.
North and particularly Allen had already whipped the crowd into a lather.
North, who lost his 1994 bid to unseat Democratic Sen. Chuck Robb, also ripped into the "potentates of pork along the Potomac and their headlong rush toward socialism."
But Allen, most clearly returned to the pugnacious, locker-room rhetoric that often distinguished the namesake son of the Hall of Fame football coach as governor in the early 1990s as he embarks on his own political comeback.
Allen has published a book for what Republicans say is a bid to win back his Senate seat from Democrat Jim Webb in 2012. Allen was a prohibitive favorite in 2006 to easily defeat Webb, but lost his re-election bid and a promising spot in the GOP presidential nomination race.
He referred to the Democrats who now control Congress as "sanctimonious, pompous social engineers" and accused them of "spending on someone else's credit card like a drunken, bloated nanny."
Obama's administration, he said, had become too fond of apologizing for U.S. military might.
"We don't need to apologize as Americans. Americans throughout history have liberated more people than any other country on earth, including the liberation of my mother from the Nazis," Allen said.
His mother, Etty, is Jewish and grew up in Tunisia. Her father had been detained by the Nazis while they occupied Tunisia. But during his campaign four years ago, Allen bristled when asked at a debate about his mother's Jewish heritage rather than acknowledging or embracing it.
That helped doom Allen's re-election bid already hobbled in August when he pointed to a Virginia-born Webb campaign volunteer of Indian descent during a campaign speech and called him "Macaca," which is a slur in some cultures.