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Leaked memos expose the hypocrisy of the Left over Iran

Mr. T

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Leaked memos expose the hypocrisy of the Left over Iran


These past two years it has become received wisdom in influential sections of the foreign policy community that, in the wake of the Bush administration's foreign policy excesses and errors, the chief imperative of US foreign policy is to avoid any further foreign entanglements. In the pursuit of this shimmering transcendent goal, however, it soon enough becomes necessary to use any and every argument that comes to hand, no matter how implausible.


Thus Iran-apologists such as former State Department officials Floyd and Hillary Leverett - who holidayed in Tehran's best uptown hotels while, downtown, protesters were seized at random off the streets and beaten into a state of permanent incapacity, or sexually violated with broken bottles - are associated with prestigious progressive think-tanks, and invited to speak at respectable gatherings of international relations scholars. And their considered view that the Iranian regime is a victim of unrestrained US aggression is taken as a mainstream scholarly opinion.


Yet these are the same Leveretts who insisted, 18 months ago in The Washington Post, that Iran's elections were not only free and fair, but actually freer and fairer than those of their own country. Even though, as the WikiLeaks cables have now clarified, US diplomats knew all along that the result was fixed; and further knew that the actual election figures were very similar to those revealed by a brave young official in the Iranian Information Ministry, Mohammad Asghari, who paid for this act of heroism with his life, only to have his information greeted with pure white silence in Washington.


In this scholarly mirror universe, where truth and fiction are equally interesting so long as they titillate the creative intellect, and where a generalised hostility to Western interests can pass as a proxy for political progressivism, the old hard Left and the new far Right join together in a splendid danse macabre, Black and Red carolling in joyous euphony.


In June last year we were confidently informed that President Obama's conciliatory Cairo speech - where he declared to the Iranian regime that the US was willing "to move forward without preconditions on the basis of mutual respect" - would provide moral succour to the populations of the Middle East and reassure them that the US held no animosity towards them.


We now know that when they heard those fateful words - uttered a mere fortnight before the Iranian elections, so easily debauched before Washington's studiously averted eyes - every significant Arab leader must actually have been appalled, and must have wondered what on earth the US President could be thinking.


For as the cables conveyed to Washington by its regional offices make clear, nobody there took the pseudo-scholarly arguments for "constructive engagement" seriously. Take this assessment relayed from Amman by ambassador Stephen Beecroft, two months before Obama's soaring and eloquent, if foolish and empty, Cairo peroration: "Jordanian leaders' comments betray a powerful undercurrent of doubt that the US knows how to deal effectively with Iran. Foreign Minister Nasser Joudeh has suggested the Iranians would be happy to let talks with the US continue for 10 years without moving them forward, believing that they can benefit from perceived acceptance after years of isolation without paying a price."


Or take this honest but doomed communication from Timothy Richardson, acting director of America's Iran Regional Presence Office in Dubai: "Any US effort to engage the current Iranian government will be perceived by a wide spectrum of Arabs as accommodation with [President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad." Isn't this what any moderately informed, intelligent Western observer would also have concluded, had political affections not required them to pretend otherwise?


During the past week our grand legion of "engagers" have been at pains to insist that sentiments such as these show only the supposed "hypocrisy" of Arab leaders on Iran, since they express views in private that they do not express in public.


Yet it isn't the Arab governments who have been hypocritical: indeed, the advice from Jordan is demonstrably more sober and honest than that of many foreign policy experts. Rather, the charge of hypocrisy better fits our faux-conciliators and Iran apologists, since they advocate in the name of high principle a policy they know in their hearts indefinitely prolongs the life of one of the planet's most awful and despised regimes, with the sole rationale of avoiding foreign entanglements at any cost.


What is worse, the cables support what many feared when they observed Obama's emotionless, zen-like reaction to the Green Movement's suppression: that from Washington's point of view the Iranian rebels were an encumbrance rather than an ally.


According to Alan Eyre, the Iran RPO director, in January this year: "Iran's current domestic strife is a political black hole that swallows all other issues . . . such that until a new homeostasis is reached in Iran's political ruling class, progress on issues of bilateral importance will be even more difficult than usual."


No doubt this return to business as usual will come as a great relief to the "constructive engagement" set in Washington and beyond. Except that this time around the Iranian spectre will shadow not only the region, but potentially the entire world. And this time there is not the slightest chance that a peaceful change of government can avert the looming catastrophe.



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There's something psychologically warped about going to the enemies side.


I don't know how to explain it, but people cooperating with the nazis, not out of fear,


but seemingly sold out to be on the more dangerous, and maybe winning? side?


Like Pelosi meeting with whatshisname of Syria. Michael Moo-er giving fidel great big smoochies,


Obamao being friendly with Chavez... Jimmy peanut brain Carter and the terrorist PLO... Van Jones and communism....


Weird. Very warped. Reminds me of Heck's dedication to arguing over ever point brought on board this forum,


yet being frightened to start his OWN thread. Just weird, maybe sick dedication to weirdness.

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