Does Washington “Taint” Dissidents?
As a follow-up to my post on Kerry in Egypt: There is a false conventional wisdom—certainly voiced privately by State Department and National Security Council officials in interagency meetings—that Washington’s support for dissidents is a kiss-of-death. U.S. policy can be faulted for, at times, having about as much nuance as Howard Stern, but is U.S. support for dissidents, reformers, and civil society counterproductive? Absolutely not. When properly delivered, U.S. support advances liberty and freedom, even in the Middle East.