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There needs to be a quaint colloquialism Americans can use to describe when a politician looks you square in the eye and tells you an obvious lie. At least, one fit for polite company.
Like when our American president bows down low before a foreign potentate and then denies it. Once the picture hit the American media, the White House scrambled to explain that Obama had to bend over to his waist level in order to grasp King Abdullah by both hands when greeting him last week at the G-20 meeting.
So what you saw wasn’t what you really saw. It was just a recorded figment of your imagination.
The camera angles showing our American president bending at the knee wasn’t what it looked like, at all. And so we must assume that our American president bowed low enough to put his head below shoulder level of the foreign potentate, was because King Abdullah is short, and has unusually long arms so that he couldn’t elevate his hands high enough for Obama to reach without bending over.
Who can forget when President George W. Bush took Abdullah by the hand like a couple of dating teenagers as he gave the Saudi king a tour of his ranch?
Though this is somewhat shocking to Americans, it is a culturally acceptable tradition in the Middle East.
But for an American government official to bow down in obeisance to a foreign royal is an entirely different matter. And it is astonishing for an American president to do so.
Which is why nobody was particularly shocked when President Obama didn’t bow before Queen Elizabeth of England. We really didn’t expect him to. Americans are not subject to British royalty and therefore bowing before British royalty would be an insult to American sovereignty.
Your average American tourist would be too proud of his country and too independent to bow himself low before the British crown.
American officials do not bow themselves low or curtsy before a foreign monarch because such a gesture symbolizes recognition of that foreign monarch’s authority and power over the government they represent.
When the president met with Queen Elizabeth, Obama scandalized British royal protocol by taking both her hands and giving them a hearty shake. British protocol, (a subject in which we assume the Obamas were instructed) forbids one from taking the Queen’s proffered hand, instead expecting one to simply brush the royal digits and withdraw.
OK, so Obama practically yanked both her arms off. So what? We’re Americans. She’s queen of England, not queen of America.
Despite the White House denials, President Obama offered King Abdullah a deep, subservient bow of the kind offered by a subject before his king. I don’t think I am reading too much into this. Whatever President Obama thinks Abdullah deserves in the way of subservient fealty, we Americans believe it lowers our sovereign prestige.
Frankly, I am not too much concerned whether President Obama showed the queen of England a small dose of American disrespect out of what could be construed as a temporary lapse of protocol.
But I am greatly concerned, that the president showed King Abdullah far too much respect, given the Muslim Saudi’s open hatred of all things Christian or Jewish, Saudi Arabia’s legendary disrespect for human rights and religious liberty, or even its institutionalized misogyny. It is important to remember that the Quran commands Muslims to seek the subjection of all other nations to Islam. And an act such as this gives the Muslims the idea that our leader is stepping in that direction.
It is clear from the video that Barack Hussein Obama was NOT just bending down to take Abdullah’s hands. Abdullah isn’t three feet tall, and Obama’s arms are not 18 inches long. Obama is not the tallest man in America – he is only slightly above average height. Abdullah is not the shortest man in the Middle East – he’s only slightly below average height. And Americans are not the dumbest people on seven continents – most of them have shaken hands with shorter people.
It was not a necessary action for him to bow nearly to the knee in order to grasp the king’s hands in both of his. Any human being who has ever taken Grandma’s hand knows that.
So, why did he lie? It was clearly a lie. It was as obvious a lie as when Bill Clinton tried to hang his veracity on the meaning of the word “is.”
What bothers me on an equal level to the president’s act of subservience to a Muslim king is the ease with which he lied to the American people about it – and the willingness of the mainstream media to pretend that they believe it. And more than that, how little respect it shows for his own people. How dumb does he think we are?
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