Thursday, July 2, 2009

Obama's Failure in Iran January 19, 2009

President Obama's choice of silence, as his initial response to the protests in Iran was an abomination. Although, he is not verbalizing his opinion, the President’s lack of action is his administration’s cryptogram to the world that America implicitly supports the repressive, tyrannical regime currently in charge of Iran. We watched Gibbs say that what’s going on is vigorous debate; the shooting of 8 and now 12 demonstrators is not debate, the knocking of heads and bloodying of demonstrators by the Revolutionary guards is not debate, the arbitrary arrest of journalist, political opposition and students is not debate; and to call it a debate and to use this neutral, opaque and denatured language is disgraceful. Beyond that, the turmoil in Iraq is no longer about the elections, the reason that young people are dying in the streets, is not because they wanted a recounting of hanging chads on the outer precincts of Tehran. What they want is to no longer live under a tyrannical, repressive and corrupt theocracy.

This is what the demonstrations, the movement and the moment is about now. Its about the regime, there is an opportunity and as leader of the free world, Obama must seize it. Revolution is going to happen, one way or the other eventually, and this Theocracy will fall. It may not happen now, but it ought to be supported because it might happen now and it would change the world if it did.

The entire debacle is deeply disturbing and shameful. The President has failed to really offer his support for the protesters at any time and he has failed to directly question the results of the election. The other night, in an interview he said “Well it doesn’t really matter whether Mousavi is declared the victor or Ahmadinejad there aren’t major policy differences between the two”. Though, that may have been true before the election, we don’t know if it is true going forward, but in any case it was an awful thing to say, because the protester who are on the street right are there largely for one of two reasons; either they are supporters of Mousavi or they think the election was fraudulent. So by him saying that he is in effect saying that what you are doing doesn’t matter that much is reprehensible.

Everybody understands that America is not going to go to War over this, however if you are a demonstrator on the street, you want to hear that America is behind you and they need material support with communication and other means as the CIA helped Solidarity in the 1980’s. We are Americans; freedom is the foundation of our existence. President Obama must lead and explicitly express that we stand for the freedom of all people. Obama can easily accomplish this without directly debasing the Iran’s fascist regime, just as President Reagan did when he supported the efforts of the Solidarity movement in Eastern Block Poland. To date, Obama position only be seen as a desire for stability, engagement and negotiations with the existing regime-and when the protesters get this message in the street, it is highly discouraging.

The truth of the matter is that it’s not a question of what the President says; it’s a question of what are our objectives in Iran. The President’s Objectives, as he has said repeatedly, in his campaign, in his inaugural address and in his ridiculous speech in Cairo, is to negotiate with the Regime in Iran. What’s worst of all about this, looking at President Obama, is not only that he is being timid, he is being disingenuous. The real reason that he won’t speak out, has nothing to do with this argument that we don’t want to meddle, the Iranian Regime has and will accuse us of that regardless. The real reason for his position is that President Obama is determined to find a way to try and negotiate with the regime, with Khamenei with Ahmadinejad about their nuclear weapons program. This is a policy doomed to failure, but it explains why he won’t speak out about representative government and individual liberty in Iran.

Obama’s inexperience and naivety is frightening. In his inaugural address, he said, “To those who cling to power through the silencing of dissent, we will extend a hand”. Well that’s what’s going on here now. In addition, Obama’s reference to call an unelected, self- professed, ideological tyrant the "Supreme Leader" lacks intellectual heft and disparages the image of our Nation. The ignorance of President Obama to afford an autocratic menace this title was an unforgivable abomination. Obama’s abysmal judgment in this matter would be like FDR referring to Adolf Hitler as Mein Fuhrer, in his weekly Wartime address to the American people.

That policy is doomed to failure. I think the American Objective should be the overthrow of this regime, and the President is wrong for not helping lay the groundwork for this to happen. The students and people in the streets of Iran are very vulnerable, and American rhetoric, without American action, puts them in more danger.

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