16 February 2010

Uncommon Commentary #103: Obombast Needs a "Dialogue" Coach

Obama's policy of disregarding Iran's dissidents for the sake of "engaging" Ahmadinejad's regime is reminiscent of the elder Bush's policy toward Gorbachev's USSR.  The effect of perestroika and of glasnost (which, incidentally, means not "openness" but "publicity") may have been to hasten the demise of the Soviet Union (which was ultimately inescapable so long as the state remained burdened by its leftist economic system), but the purpose had been to save it; Bush, though aware of the CIA's assessment that the USSR was heading for collapse, supported the reforms and the country in which they were taking place, as if Soviet "communism with a human face" were preferable to no Soviet communism.
It's questionable whether Iran's government will collapse because of popular dissatisfaction, but if we are to "dialogue" with anyone in that nation, it ought to be not with the ruling despots but with those who are striving to undo the effects of the 1979 revolution, and who, as potential post-Ahmadinejad leaders, want to know whether our talk of "human rights" means anything.