Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Walk the Line

While the usual knee-jerk conservatives spout out their predictable objections, it's worth noting the delicacy of the situation in Iran. While most Americans obviously wants an end to the Ayatollah's theocracy and a peaceful, prosperous, and friendly Iran, the questions is how best to get there.

The posturing right demands a strong statement from the President affirming our support for the protesters. But to what end? An open declaration of support from the US President plays directly into the hands of the oppressors in Iran. It gives credence to their claims that the protests are orchestrated by their enemies and might help unite much of the country behind the regime. The obviousness of this predicament has not prevented condemnation of the President from some corners, and some conservatives, such as Peggy Noonan and George Will, should be credited for noting the foolishness of such criticism.
Let's be fair. Not every conservative is as moronic as Jeff Jacoby and some argue reasonably for stronger words or at least acknowledge the potential downside.

We'll just quietly give thanks for a leader who thinks about the best course of action to effect the most favorable outcome and makes the necessary adjustments as circumstances change — unlike, well, you know . . .

What the Iranian people need is to know that the rest of the world supports them. Obama is trying to do this without giving any credence to the regime's claims of foreign interference. It's a delicate line to walk, and we wish the President success. And whether he got to this speech because of Republican criticism or just a reasonable reassessment of changing circumstances, it's still a damn good one. The man can talk, and right now the right words matter.

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