Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Why Did Bush Blink on Iran? (Ask Condi)

By Aussiegirl

This is a must-read article. This is the most important issue on the table when it comes to our security and future -- much more important that the latest dem idiocy or the usual Washington flapdoodle we usually obsess about. The fact that the Bush administration has blinked in the face of this overt threat is a potentially disastrous development of historic proportions. History will not judge this well if we fail. Neville Chamberlain comes to mind. Soaring rhetoric is fine, but Peggy Noonan was on to something when she was made uneasy by the Bush inaugural speech. There's probably few things that are worse than soaring rhetoric that is not followed by concrete action. Better the latter without the former. That's why TR said: "Talk softly but carry a big stick." Unfortunately, our rhetoric is to talk loudly and offer big carrots and no sticks to madmen with nukes bent on destroying us.

Why Did Bush Blink on Iran? (Ask Condi)

Why Did Bush Blink on Iran? (Ask Condi)
By Richard Perle

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran knows what he wants: nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them; suppression of freedom at home and the spread of terrorism abroad; and the "shattering and fall of the ideology and thoughts of the liberal democratic systems."

President Bush, too, knows what he wants: an irreversible end to Iran's nuclear weapons program, the "expansion of freedom in all the world" and victory in the war on terrorism.

The State Department and its European counterparts know what they want: negotiations.

For more than five years, the administration has dithered. Bush gave soaring speeches, the Iranians issued extravagant threats and, in 2003, the State Department handed the keys to the impasse to the British, French and Germans (the "E.U.-3"), who offered diplomatic valet parking to an administration befuddled by contradiction and indecision. And now, on May 31, the administration offered to join talks with Iran on its nuclear program.

How is it that Bush, who vowed that on his watch "the worst weapons will not fall into the worst hands," has chosen to beat such an ignominious retreat?

Proximity is critical in politics and policy. And the geography of this administration has changed. Condoleezza Rice has moved from the White House to Foggy Bottom, a mere mile or so away. What matters is not that she is further removed from the Oval Office; Rice's influence on the president is undiminished. It is, rather, that she is now in the midst of -- and increasingly represents -- a diplomatic establishment that is driven to accommodate its allies even when (or, it seems, especially when) such allies counsel the appeasement of our adversaries. [....]

It is not clear whether Bush recognizes the perils of the course he has been persuaded to take. What has been presented to Ahmadinejad as a simple take-it-or-leave-it deal -- stop the activities that could enable you to acquire nuclear weapons and we will reward you, or continue them and we will punish you -- is nothing of the sort. Neither the activities nor the carrots and sticks are clearly defined or settled with our allies, much less with Russia and China. If the punishments require approval by the U.N. Security Council, the United States would need an unlikely combination of approvals and abstentions from council members. The new policy, undoubtedly pitched to the president as a means of enticing the E.U.-3 to support ending Iran's program, is likely to diminish pressure on Iran and allow the mullahs more time to develop the weapons they have paid dearly to pursue. [....]

The failure of successive U.S. administrations, including this one, to give moral and political support to the regime's opponents is a tragedy. Iran is a country of young people, most of whom wish to live in freedom and admire the liberal democracies that Ahmadinejad loathes and fears. The brave men and women among them need, want and deserve our support. They reject the jaundiced view of tired bureaucrats who believe that their cause is hopeless or that U.S. support will worsen their situation.

In his second inaugural address, Bush said, "All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: The United States will not ignore your oppression, or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for liberty, we will stand with you."

Iranians were heartened by those words, much as the dissidents of the Soviet Union were heartened by Reagan's "evil empire" speech in 1983. A few days ago, I spoke with Amir Abbas Fakhravar, an Iranian dissident student leader who escaped first from Tehran's notorious Evin prison, then, after months in hiding, from Iran.

Fakhravar heard this president's words, and he took them to heart. But now, as he pleads for help for his fellow citizens, he is apprehensive. He wonders whether the administration's new approach to the mullahs will silence the president's voice, whether the proponents of accommodation with Tehran will regard the struggle for freedom in Iran as an obstacle to their new diplomacy.

Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) tried two weeks ago to pass the Iran Freedom Support Act, which would have increased the administration's too-little-too-late support for democracy and human rights in Iran. But the State Department opposed it, arguing that it "runs counter to our efforts . . . it would limit our diplomatic flexibility."

I hope it is not too late for Fakhravar and his friends. I know it is not too late for us, not too late to give substance to Bush's words, not too late to redeem our honor.


At 8:33 PM, Blogger Liberty said...

Wait a minute. There's something missing here.
How about the support for the U.S. in order that the U.S. might continue to give its support to the two-faced world?

When have the Iranians supported our effort to help the Iraqis create a unified nation that respects all individuals and all sects? That has included the Shari'a sect, hasn't it? And if it were not an issue of religious freedom, other freedoms would have been respected by ours truly (that would be u.s.).

The U.S.--in point of fact--is now functioning for the oxymoronic "international community" as the Jew straw man has functioned ever since the revealed moral authority refused to sanction Human slavery, and the fear of G-d was put into all self-deceiving mini-me masters.

Even our own home-grown useful idiots can't tell an "occupier" from an honorable protector. A terrorist from a freedom fighter. A lie from the truth. Too much effort. Throw our freedom fighting marines in the brig, but let the poor, throat cutting terrorists go. That'll feed the alligator and slow the ravening wolves.

Speaking of real life fables, it's sounding too much like the Briar Patch protest in reverse, Br'er Rabbits. True partners in Human responsibility will change Iran, Iraq and the rest of the terrorized world from within.

Or, the U.S., Israel and the coalition for Liberty will get damn sick of the con game for shadowlescents. Then adulthood on planet Earth will at last begin.

Lady Liberty


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