Saturday, March 29, 2008

Bracketing Defeat: From Carter to Obama

The Iranian mullahs and their maniacal front-man, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, must be happy: Allah appears to be answering their prayers.

Nearly three decades after the Jimmy Carter-assisted overthrow of the pro-American Shah, the former US President's most favored White House hopeful, Barack Obama, seems poised to win the Democratic nomination. Should he succeed in his quest and go on to win the general election, the junior Senator from Illinois would be inaugurated exactly 30 years and four days after a combination of riots, street protests, and American pressure forced the ailing Iranian monarch into exile (on January 16, 1979).

Whereas Carter presided over the rise of radical Islam, or Islamism, in Iran, Obama, if elected, is likely to preside over the rise of Islamist Iran in the world. The Hitler-admiring, Holocaust-denying mullahocracy, which has threatened to destroy Israel, attack US forces in the Middle East, and drive the US from the region, is clearly determined to develop an arsenal of nuclear intercontinental ballistic missiles. Iran's foreign policy is fundamentally, frighteningly imperialist in the way Nazi Germany's foreign policy was imperialist in the years leading up to World War II. Like Nazi Germany, Iran aims to radically change the international status quo--the power relations among nations--regionally and globally. Attempts to appease Iran are thus bound to fail, just as efforts to appease Nazi Germany failed. Instead of preventing war, appeasement of a rising imperialist power makes war inevitable.

Devotion to Appeasement

None of which matters to Carter, for whom appeasement is a kind of religion. He is surely looking forward to the Jan. 20, 2009 Presidential inauguration. Also looking ahead and dreaming of a return to proximity to power is Carter's former National Security Advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, who hated the Shah, and led Carter to believe that Washington could jump aboard the Islamist bandwagon. More recently, Brzezinski warned a Senate Foreign Relations Committee in February 2007 that an attack on Iran could be launched following a staged provocation in Iraq or a false flag terror attack within the US. His comments were in line with the views of anti-American conspiracy theorists--for example, Obama's controversial pastor of 20 years, Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

Brzezinski, who shares Wright's negative opinion of Israel and sympathy for the Islamist terrorist group Hamas, is one of Obama's foreign policy advisers. He has almost certainly influenced the candidate's thinking on Iran, which, like its Stalinist, nuclear armed and proliferating ally, North Korea, has succeeded brilliantly in using dragged-out diplomacy to play for time and weaken the international community's political will. As this reporter has often observed, the two regimes have seemed to work like a tag team in exhibition wrestling; when one regime is under pressure, the other invariably ratchets up tensions with a provocative move or defiant gesture. Friday's North Korean missile test was part of this strategy.

But the Iranian problem, according to Obama, is mainly America's fault. More diplomacy is the answer, he insists. In fact, the Senator has accused the present administration of not even trying to use diplomacy to moderate Iranian behavior.

To which this reporter, a journalist and student of power politics who covered the Shah's fall, can only say: heaven help us.