If you want to know why I call blogress Jennifer Rubin aJewish Athena, just take a gander at her Pajamas piece on the American Left, the President and the protests in Iran, Don’t Iranians Deserve ‘Hope and Change’ Too? The very title tells you much of what you need to know.
Barack Obama, who promised hope and change in his successful campaign to win the White House, seems oblivious that the Iranian people could have aspirations for those very ideals. And they are in far more dire streets than we were when he announced his bid for the Oval Office. And yet he has been most mealy-mouthed as they rise up against a fraudulent election, hoping for regime change.
The man eager to push the longest standing democracy in the Middle East to alter its policies on settlements doesn’t want to be the United States to be seen by the world as “meddling” in Iranian affairs. When he got that 3 AM phone call, he voted “present.” Hearing the President’s initial statement on the protests in Iran, Jim Lindgen struggled “against a feeling of utter disgust”
I recognize that there are times in diplomacy when one has to hide one’s real feelings and to mince one’s words about evil. And I realize that it is remotely possible that this is one of those times.
Yet this is a president who mormally loves the bully pulpit. And Obama’s statements so far are about as restrained as it is possible for a president to utter without a gun actually being held to his head. One might perhaps understand a statement this mushy if Iran were America’s closest political or military ally in the world. But it’s not.
Note that even now Obama is not willing to denounce Ahmadinejad. All he is willing to say is “as odious as I consider some of President Ahmadinejad’s statements.” Obama chooses his words carefully. He doesn’t call Ahminejad odious, nor does he call Ahmadinejad’s core beliefs odious (after all, sometimes people say loose things that don’t express their core beliefs). Nor does he say that Ahmadinejad’s statements ARE odious, just that Obama personally “considers” them odious.
Amazing that the President of the United States can’t denounce a man who wishes to wipe a sovereign nation off the map and who serves as chief executive of a regime which executes gay people on a regular basis, some so young that if they were American citizens, they wouldn’t be old enough to vote. And with such a ruthless hegemon, Rubin sees “the Obama administration [apparently] choosing, a ruthless determination to pursue some deal, any deal (there has to be a deal, right?) with the mullahs.”
And Rubin finds that Obama’s not the only one who appears blind to the aspirations of the Iranaian people:
It has been obvious for some time that the American Left has given up on democracy and human rights as fundamental tenets of American foreign policy. But never before has it been so clear just how ruthless and indifferent they are to the aspirations of those who would be crushed by the boot of despotic regimes. And never before have we seen how Herculean a task it is to deny and obfuscate the nature of these sorts of regimes in order to pursue a policy devoted to stability, engagement, and process as goals in and of themselves (rather than as means to some greater ends).
And yet there are notable–and noble–exceptions on the left, gay leftie blogger Michael Petrelis reports hundreds at San Francisco Solidarity Rally for Iranian Democracy. But, by and large, today, the left seeks to put pressure on our allies and to appease our adversaries, even as those adversaries oppress the very types of people for whose “rights” they agitate in our country.
And the sufferings of those groups are far less, far, far, less than they are over there.
We may not yet have a woman President, but married women here are not subject to the violent whims of their husbands. Most states may not recognize our unions as marriages, but the state does not execute us for acting on our longings for sexual and romantic intimacy.
It would be nice if those on the Left showed the same regard Petrelis and the San Francisco protestors have for those whose rights they would likely take to the streets if only they had had that good fortune to be born over here.