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Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Krauthammer on Obama's dumb diplomacy

Here's Charles Krauthammer on Iran and Venezuela:
On Iran cutting an oil deal with Chavez and declaring the nuclear issue non-negotiable:

Well, I think this marks the complete collapse of Obama's Iran policy. Let's remember the premise was you be nice to our adversaries, you extend a hand, and you go around the world on an apology tour.

And the administration said behind the scenes, you can't see the results now, but in time the fruits will be there. Well, let's look at the harvest.

You get Obama saying he wants to meet unconditionally with the Iranians. He holds his tongue when demonstrators are being shot in the street as a way to keep open channels with the regime, even though it sullies America's reputation of supporting democrats, especially oppressed democrats, around the world.

He apologizes in the Cairo speech for what Eisenhower had done almost 50 years ago, which, incidentally had been a condition the Iranians had put on resuming negotiations with us.

He does all of that, and what is his reward? The president of Iran announces oh, yes, I will speak with Obama, but it has to be in front of the world media, and it will be a debate. And incidentally, the nuclear issue is closed. It is not an issue.

So what does Obama get for that sweet handshake and exchange of books with Chavez at the summit? Chavez arrives in Iran, he makes an alliance, and he promises to supply gasoline. Why is that important? Because the one area where Iran is really weak is in refined petroleum. It has got a lot of crude.

But that's where we would be applying our sanctions if they don't stop their nuclear program. So what Chavez is doing is undermining in advance the only remaining economic sanction.

All of this for what the Obama administration calls "smart power." It's dumb diplomacy.
It's been suggested before that any attempt to cut off Iran's refined oil products would require the use of American warships to patrol the Straits of Hormuz to prevent their passage. From there, it's only a short step to war anyway. If Venezuela is going to supply Iran with refined oil products, that suggestion is correct.

What could go wrong?


At 1:44 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

If the US had the will to stop Iran, it could be stopped now at little cost. It doesn't have the will.

What could go wrong indeed


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