The Corner

Night Thoughts on Obama and Iran

1) An Iranian general said, “Israel’s destruction is non-negotiable.” Don’t you think President Obama should take note of that? Don’t you think he should say something like, “I understand why the Israelis are a teensy bit worried”?

You may remember what the survivor of Auschwitz said when asked, “What’s the biggest lesson you have learned?” He said, “When someone says he’s going to kill you, believe him.”

Iran’s “supreme leader,” Khamenei, recently joined a crowd in chanting “Death to America.” Don’t you think Obama should take note of that? Should he pretend that things like that simply don’t occur? Couldn’t he say something like, “Yeah, that wasn’t particularly reassuring”?

Does he think we here in America don’t notice statements such as the one Khamenei made? (“Death to America.”) He realizes we have the Internet, right?

A senior clerical ally of Khamenei’s said, “We will raise the flag of Islam over the White House.” Obama should address such statements. Does he think they’re just hot air to be ignored? Or do they indicate a mindset in the Iranian government?

You can fault the Iranian government for many things, but you can’t fault them for a lack of candor on the subject of America or Israel. They have been quite clear. If we bury our heads in the sand, the shame is on us.

2) Many have observed, “President Obama seems to have more respect for the Iranian government than he does for the Israeli.” I think he should be asked: “Which government do you respect more? Iran’s or Israel’s? Or do you regard them as basically equal?”

In the 1980s, I was dying for someone to ask Charlie Rangel or other such politicians, “Which leader do you respect more? Castro or Reagan?”

3) Every day, I grow more convinced that, if Israel attempted military action against Iran, the United States, under Obama, would stop it. This would be “a Liberty in reverse,” in Brzezinski’s charming words. And the Democratic party, the New York Times, and the U.N. would cheer. (At last, a U.S. military action that our Left could support!)

4) The problem of Iran can’t be summed up in a blogpost, of course, but David Pryce-Jones comes awfully close, here.

5) Barack Obama has a relative eternity to go in his presidency. January 20, 2017, is a long way off. I believe he will be working right up till noon, just as Bill Clinton did. What Clinton did may have been outrageous but it was relatively harmless: commuting the sentences of Weather Underground terrorists such as Susan Rosenberg. I think Obama will be aiming much bigger.

By that time, will Fidel be receiving nursing care in the Lincoln Bedroom or what?

6) In 2012, Mitt Romney said, over and over, “He’s in over his head.” He claimed that Obama was in over his head. I don’t think this is true. A guy who lacks the skill or experience to accomplish what he wants to accomplish — that’s a guy who is in over his head. I think Obama is something else. I think his head is in a particular place.

The answer to the question “What would it look like if the campus Left came to power?” is given in this presidency.

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