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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Will Obama Remain Silent About Iran Protests Again?

During the June 2009 protests that rocked Iran over election fraud, the Obama administration was silent for days, then came out and embraced improved relations with the regime in the hope of improving the chances for a negotiated end to Iran's nuclear weapons program.

The "grand bargain" approach advocated by the foreign policy establishment sought to give the Iranian regime security guarantees and regional hegemony in exchange for Iran giving up its nuclear weapons program. While the Obama administration was willing to engage in negotiations without precondition, in fact perpetual mullah rule was a precondition.

The negotiations went nowhere. The Iranians have used the past 6 months to accelerate their nuclear program, stir up trouble in Yemen and Saudi Arabia, make alliances with Hugo Chavez, and continue to arm Hamas and Hezbollah as forward bases in anticipation of a confrontation over the nuclear program.

One again, protests are spreading in Iran, and news is getting out through the blogosphere and internet.

Will Obama break his silence on vacation to take the side of the Iranian people?

If the excuse last time was that we should do nothing to disrupt nuclear negotiations, what is the excuse this time, now that negotiations have failed?

Update: Fausta Wertz, who notes how quickly Obama spoke out when Honduras ousted Zelaya, wants to bet me it will take three days for a comment. Should I take the bet?

Meanwhile, newby blogger Brain Itch wonders what Dubya would have done.

Update 3:00 p.m. -- About 20 minutes ago the White House issued a statement as reported by AFP:

The White House on Sunday strongly condemned "violent and unjust suppression" of civilians in Iran, following a fierce government crackdown on opposition protests.

The strongly-worded statement contrasted with careful initial responses by the White House following post-election protests in Iran in June and came as the nuclear showdown between Tehran and world powers reached a critical point.

"We strongly condemn the violent and unjust suppression of civilians in Iran seeking to exercise their universal rights," White House spokesman Mike Hammer said in a statement.

"Hope and history are on the side of those who peacefully seek their universal rights, and so is the United States.

The full statement is not yet on the White House website. I'll link when it is. Based on this report, it looks like we will not make the same mistake as in June. (I should have taken Fausta up on the bet; this is why I don't gamble.)

What remains to be seen is whether the regime change advocated by the popular uprising in Iran will be embraced by the U.S., or will we revert back to the "grand bargain" approach.


Will Obama interrupt his vacation to make a personal statement in support of the Iranian people, or will he rely on a press statement?

Related Posts:
John Kerry's Persian Delusion
Looks Like Iran Pwned Obama
He Who Cannot Stop Talking, Is Silent On Iran

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  1. lets see, the Obama way has gotten us closer to a book being written in the future with a chapter titled , "The Gathering Storm." O, it's been taken??

    The Bush way saw the removal of Syrian troops from Lebanon, the dismantling of Col Kokamamies WMD program, the removal of Saddam, etc.

    But only a moron like Bush would think there was any coincidence.

  2. The name is Barack Hussein Obama. Sometimes when it walks like a duck..........

  3. Professor, you answered your own question - it was nothing more than an excuse.

    Barack Obama is essentially a dishonest man.He does not give a damn about what the protestors do or if they are massacred. As far as he is concerned, they are only complicating the "grand bargain". Its not just him but the entire State Department and the Iran foreign policy "experts" who think this way?

    Remember how we were all told that if Obama took sides, the regime would then turn it against the protestors and call them traitors and American stooges ? Guess what - thats what they did EVEN when Obama stayed silent.

    Feel terrible for the Iranians - there is a Youtube clip posted on Gateway pundit that have pretty gruesome images - these people are literally fighting for their lives. Unfortunately they are unarmed and are pretty much at the mercy of these thugs.

    Seeing these thug regimes across the world only increases my appreciation of the Founding Father's foresight with the Second Amendment.

  4. The Iranian protesters are rescuing people from the gallows, cutting them down from the noose, and our President is silent. I am deeply, deeply ashamed.

  5. about 230 EST today, the WH issued a "stop unjust persecution of protestor" message

  6. It's not peaceful any more, Mr. President. Do you support demonstrators fighting for their very lives? That's the question.

  7. The Blood of the Iranian protesters are on the Left's hands.


    Simple, for the past 8 years they decried President Bush and the Republicans's attempts at Wilsonianism overseas. "BusHitler," anyone?

    Now that Obama took the Kissingerian path, what do those pro-Democracy protesters expect the Democrats in America to do? Support them?

    Democrats never supported President Bush when it came to foreign policy, why should non-voters expect better treatment?

    This is not your father's Democratic party. At least FDR, Truman, JFK and LBJ supported Freedom Overseas, not anymore.

    Next time a Libral Blogger cries over childrren overseas, tell them to look in the mirror.

  8. As a general rule, Obama has harsh words only for American conservatives. There are others whom he appears to criticize, but he scolds them only while helping them out, as when bringing here those captured in warfare in foreign nations to give them the rights of American criminal defendants.

    Tea partiers? Push back twice as hard! Iranian theocrats? Extend the hand of friendship.

    When our Commander in Chief thinks of the word "enemy," who does he envision?

  9. Once again, in a situation that calls for a principled voice of world leadership, we have the Bolshevik Boy Wonder out on the links... pathetic.

    Of course, the Left will retort with "what are you going to do, bomb them?"- when in fact there's plenty we should be doing that's far short of that.

    The fact is that this WH has bet most of their chips on dealing with Ahmedinjad- a democratic revolution initiated by the peons Obama already abandoned would be downright embarrassing at this point.

    Did this self-absorbed twit learn nothing from Jimmy Carter's misguided accommodation of this vile, apocalyptic regime?

    Nor from Ronald Reagan's brave and principled support of Solidarity in Poland... thus freeing millions?

    I guess preventing a nuclear arms-race in the ME and/or avoiding and all-out war between Israel and Tehran/Demascus/Hezbollah/Hamas isn't enough to interest Dear Leader in doing the right thing for once-

  10. Don't take the bet. Fausta's always right about dictatorships.