At this mornings State Department press briefing the Obama Administration’s spokesman refused to condemn the Iranian government’s crackdown on the protesters, or even acknowledge that electoral fraud has taken place. This was followed by President Obama’s exclusive interview with The New York Times in which he said from an American national security viewpoint it did not matter if President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or Mir Hussein Moussavi, the last Prime Minister, won the election. This was the wrong message to send to Iran’s democracy movement.
The President’s remarks were in sharp contrast to the strong statements of support from the Iranian opposition has received from the leaders of Britain, France and Germany. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei singled out the United Kingdom as the “most evil” of Western governments. I sure wish the United States was acting in a manner similar to our European allies. I also wish the Obama administration would give democracy promotion a high priority. We need to have more John F. Kennedy’s in our State Department: “Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.”
“To those peoples in the huts and villages across the globe struggling to break the bonds of mass misery, we pledge our best efforts to help them help themselves, for whatever period is required—not because the Communists may be doing it, not because we seek their votes, but because it is right. If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.”