Tuesday, March 01, 2011

President Obama is in over his head

The Middle East is in an uproar.  Throughout the region, pro democracy dissident groups are rising up against regimes.  While some might praise such, it must be noted that the rise of such groups is not to the United States’ advantage.  Those in the streets in the Middle East and the Arab world want a very different kind of democracy than what then what we know.

They are led by groups like the Muslim Brotherhood, who want a traditional Muslim state to be ran in the nation states that they rise up in.  In other words, they want to go back to the Sixth Century.  They hate American values, especially those that say women are equal.

World pundits are scrambling to find a reason for the uprising in such places.  Some blame the American government.  But, if the American government is to blame, it is pretty ignorant.  For, with the uprisings, crippling oil prices have developed that could bring America to its economic knees.  For decades, the United States has cut deals with despots in the region that kept the oil flowing and kept us from being the victims of craziness.  It might not seem ideal, but it was in the interests of the American people.

That brings us to Muammar Gaddafi of Libya.  Back in the 1980s, he was easy to hate.  But, during the most recent former President Bush’s war on terror, Gaddafi freely showed his cards and cooperated with the United States.  Now, the United States stands ready to cut Gaddafi off at his knees and see the uprising rule the day.

On the surface, such sounds so good.  The United States stands for freedom and uprising.  But, chaos and anti American regimes will follow.  What happens when the Jordan or Saudi Arabia are so challenged by those in the streets?

Further are we so removed from “laying down the law?”  Think on it, if two hundred thousand “tea party” protesters started making their way to the White House, would the US government just sit by or would it defend the President of the United States with all it had?

Be clear, VUI is not comparing President Obama to Muammar Gaddafi.  All we are saying is that the United States ought be very careful before it takes sides in such matters and should remember how we would act ourselves.  After all, the United States removed sanctions from Gaddafi’s Libya after he towed the terrorist line a few years ago.  In the wake of the United States abandoning an old friend like Hosni Burbarak in Egypt, how can we appeal to other Middle Eastern leaders to trust us and be on our side in the real problem, the war on terror?

Indeed, the Obama Administration’s policy in the Middle East is a “feel good” policy.  It might appeal to the editorial pages of the New York Times, but centuries of history says such a policy does no good in actually making things work for American interests in the Middle East. And, right or wrong, the President of the United States should be looking out for American interests first.  That is his job.  Appealing to the Muslim Brotherhood’s wishes and wants should not even be considered.  Indeed, the events in the Arab World show that President Obama is woefully over his head.  It appears we have a feel good President who does not even consider the reality of real world politics, or realpolitk. America has a President the extremists can push around.  And, they know it.

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