Sen. Barack Obama (WND photo)
Leading Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama pooh-poohed the idea that Iran or any of a few other “tiny” nations around the world offer a serious potential threat to the United States or the free world.
“Iran, Cuba, Venezuela? These countries are tiny compared to the Soviet Union. They don’t pose any serious threat to us,” he told a crowd at a campaign stop over the weekend, prompting the probable Republican opponent for the White House to respond that Iran already is attacking the U.S.
“Obviously, Iran isn’t a superpower, doesn’t possess the military power the Soviet Union had. But that does not mean, by any stretch of the imagination that the threat posed by Iran is insignificant,” Sen. John McCain said today. “On the contrary, right now Iran provides some of the deadliest explosive devices used in Iraq to kill our soldiers.
“They are the chief sponsor of Shia extremists in Iraq, and terrorist organizations in the Middle East. … And their president, who has called Israel a stinking corpse, has repeatedly made clear his government’s commitment to Israel’s destruction. Most worrying, Iran is intent on acquiring nuclear weapons,” McCain said.
Participants in a forum on YouTube, where video of Obama’s statements were posted, questioned his sanity.
“I take back everything I ever said about Obama and correct myself,” wrote one contributor. “He’s not just a moron. He’s a full scale idiot who knowns (sic) absolutely nothing about history or the world. Don’t worry about Iran? Who stole his brain? This guy as POTUS … good night free world.”
Obama was advocating for his stated position of being willing to hold discussions with leaders of rogue nations, such as Iran.
His comments are available on YouTube:
He said strong leaders and strong nations are willing to hold discussions with their enemies. He said that’s what President John F. Kennedy did with Nikita Khruschchev, what President Ronald Reagan did with Mikhail Gorbachev and what Richard Nixon did with Mao Zedong.
Obama said at various points, the Soviet Union, headed by Khruschchev and Gorbachev, was threatening to wipe the U.S. off the planet.
But he said the “engagement” of the national leaders through dialogue “led to a series of measures that helped prevent nuclear war.” He said that such efforts also eventually “brought down the Berlin wall.”
“That has to be the kind of approach we take,” he said.
“If Iran ever tried to pose a serious threat to us, they wouldn’t stand a chance. We should use that position of strength … to be bold enough to go ahead and listen,” Obama stated.
Ed Morrissey, a blogger at HotAir.com, however, asserted Obama had his facts wrong.
“Wow. Where to begin with this silliness?” he wrote. “Let’s start with the Soviet Union. We talked with the Soviet Union because they also had nuclear weapons. Obama seems to forget that the entire point of our Iran policy is to prevent being put in the position of having to cut deals with a terrorist-supporting, radical Islamist non-rational state. When the enemy already has the capability of destroying you several times over, negotiations are needed to keep one side from initiating a war. Only an idiot would think that the negotiations intended on disarming the Soviets, or they us. The same dynamic applies to our engagement with Mao Zedong and Red China; Mao was smart enough to hold himself out as a potential partner in a power balance against the Soviets.”
Morrissey continued by explaining that the Soviet Union collapsed economically and the Berlin Wall fell because the regime propping it up disappeared.
“Why did the Soviet Union collapse? Because Ronald Reagan won an economic war with Moscow, forcing it to spend more and more and falling further and further behind. The Strategic Defense Initiative provided the coup de grace to the Soviets, who knew they could never match us in missile defense, and tried negotiating an end to the economic war instead, with disastrous results,” he wrote.
Morrissey raised concerns about the “common interests” Obama describes between the U.S. and Iran’s governing powers.
“What interests would those be? The destruction of Israel, the denial of the Holocaust, the financial and military support of Hamas and Hezbollah, or the killing of American soldiers in Iraq?” he asked.
“The Soviets may have been evil, but they were rational, and we could count on their desire to survive to rely on the doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction. The Iranians believe that a worldwide conflagration will have Allah deliver the world to Islam, so a nuclear exchange may fall within their policy, and that’s assuming we could establishing their culpability for a sneak attack to the extent where a President Obama would order a nuclear reprisal.
“This speech reveals Obama to have no grasp of history, no grasp of strategic implications of a nuclear Iran, and no clue how to secure the nation and handle foreign policy,” he said.
On the YouTube site, a forum contributor said, “Those countries are tiny, so they pose not (sic) threat? That is the basis for his foreign policy? Al-Qaida is pretty tiny compared to the old Soviet Union as well, but that didn’t seem to stop them.”
Another wrote, “This guy has no clue.”