Let’s Talk

This is the man with whom Sen. Obama would like to sit down and have a little chat if he’s president.

Whatever happened to, “We don’t negotiate with terrorists.”  (Nope, not even a little bit.)

Timotheos

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6 thoughts on “Let’s Talk

  1. I thought Ahmadinejad was the elected president of one of the only functioning Arab democracies in the world… not a terrorist. Why should the US not talk to him? That’s the equivalent of saying (in the Church world): “We don’t talk to non-Christians because they’re incapable of understanding the Gospel.” We talked to the Soviet Union for 50 years, and they were a much greater threat than Iran will ever be.

    I certainly don’t agree with most of what Obama says, but since when is it US policy to be too frightened to talk to other world leaders?

    Karl

  2. Oops…. I just realized I wrote “Arab” for Iran… which is actually Persian… I should have written “Muslim democracies.”

    Karl

  3. Come on. No one who says that another country should be wiped off the map deserves the respect of the United States. This isn’t about Islam; it is about terrorism. He’s feeding homicide bombers into Iraq and supporting Hezbollah and Hamas. In my book, if you support terrorists, you’re just as guilty as the actual guy (or girl) who blows himself up.

    This is also not about being frightened of Ahmadinejad. But if he can’t keep from threating Israel and the United States with the typical Islamo-terrorist rhetoric, I see no reason to take him seriously as a discussion partner.

    Tim

  4. We supported the Taliban in the 1970s and 1980s, which included support for Osama bin Laden. We also supported the overthrow of elected governments in South America throughout the Cold War. So according to your logic, we are “just as guilty as the actual guy (or girl) who blows himself up.”

    Just because a leader makes outrageous claims does not mean that military action is the only possible path of engagement. After all, the Soviet Union’s leaders used to say that the United States would be wiped off the map all the time, and Khrushchev himself said, “Whether you like it or not, history is on our side. We will bury you!” Yet, we were able to talk to him. Eisenhower talked to the Soviet Union, and even Nixon went to China!

    Why is it not possible to talk to Iran? And why should we not expect a country (Iran) which shares its entire western border with Iraq to not want to be involved? Wouldn’t we be interested in playing a part if someone invaded, conquered and set up a government in Canada or Mexico? Yet we’ve barred Iran and Syria from any involvement.

    If a Democratic President had ordered the invasion of Iraq, and Republicans were calling for talks with Iran, would you be so supportive of this same policy? Republicans claimed Clinton was wrong for nation-building in Bosnia, and they were right. Now that we’re nation-building in the Middle East under a Republican President, Republicans have changed their tune. Nation-building was wrong under Clinton, and it’s wrong under Bush. It depletes our human and economic resources, and it antagonizes other nations in the region (such as Iran now, and Serbia and Yugoslavia in the 1990s).

    Being conservative means not always towing the Republican line.

    Karl

  5. Karl wrote: “Why is it not possible to talk to Iran? And why should we not expect a country (Iran) which shares its entire western border with Iraq to not want to be involved? Wouldn’t we be interested in playing a part if someone invaded, conquered and set up a government in Canada or Mexico? Yet we’ve barred Iran and Syria from any involvement.”

    You’re joking, right? The comparison is absurd. If someone invaded Mexico, even if they were a minor threat to the U.S., we would not be sending mercenary suicide bombers to pretend to be civilians and blow up the clearly identified soldiers of the invading country. If Iran wants to be involved, they should send their soldiers in Iranian uniforms and fight like men.

    “Just because a leader makes outrageous claims does not mean that military action is the only possible path of engagement.”

    Who mentioned military action? The only point I was making was that it is irresponsible to have civil, executive-level discussion with an anti-Semitic, terrorist-supporting maniac.

    I don’t have much patience with the moral equivalence stuff. And even if the U.S. dealt supportively with bad guys in the past, that doesn’t mean that they should deal supportively with them now.

    I can’t speak about the Soviet Union or China because I don’t know enough about it. But it seems to me that the fighting at that time was with words, not with mercenaries in other countries in which the U.S. was militarily involved.

    This has nothing to do with being a Republican (I’m not even registered with a party). But if we’re going to pigeon-hole, you sound like every other contrarian leftist using the arguments of Moveon.org. This is not about political parties for me; I’m not sure why you think that it is. Further, what does Bush’s policy in Iraq have to do with Obama’s policy toward Iran? I never claimed to be a big Pres. Bush fan, and it really has nothing to do with this particular point.

    I miss Thursday nights.

    Tim

  6. I too miss Thursday nights (but mostly for the theological discussion)… especially since the only other educated Lutheran I know here is my Pastor (and Dr. Maier, but we mostly talk about school :)).

    As for military action, if we’re not going to talk to the Iranians, then what other option is there?

    And not all of the fighting with the Soviet Union and China was with words: the Korean War, the Vietnam War, our involvement in Russia’s Afghanistan invasion, numerous other proxy conflicts in South America, Africa, and SE Asia.

    A’s talk is exactly what you said it is: rhetoric. A man doesn’t go far politically in Iran without putting down the US or Israel…. but how many times has Iran invaded Israel or the US? Rhetoric is rhetoric. To completely take talking off the table because of rhetoric is an absurd foreign policy. What if we had said we wouldn’t talk to the Russians because of Khrushchev’s statements? What would have happened with the Cuban Missile Crisis then? Talking has the ability to avert more war, prevent American lives lost, and pave the way for peace. The US govt’s main objective in foreign policy is to protect American lives–which it doesn’t do when it closes it’s ears to another sovereign nation.

    As for Iran’s military involvement in Iraq, many of our own reports are contradicted by Iraqi government reports and the reports of our allies. We don’t know how involved Iranian forces are involved in Iraq because we refuse to even talk about it with Iran. That’s the main problem. Nothing will be solved if we plug our ears and make noise.

    One thing we have to remember in all this is that even though A. spouts off ridiculous statements, he is still the elected leader of a soveriegn nation, and not some terrorist leader hiding out in mountains somewhere. We should head the words of Jefferson, “Equal and exact justice to all men, of whatever state or persuasion, religious or political; peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none.” Perhaps if we operated according to those standards, we wouldn’t have nations proclaiming us to be Satan.

    Apologies if I assumed you were supporting the foreign policy because of Party politics. My primary goal is to demonstrate that a bellicose, expansionistic foreign policy is neither conservative nor Constitutional… it’s more associated with Woodrow Wilson, FDR, and this delusion that we are responsible for spreading democracy through the world.

    Are you going to St. Louis for the Theological Symposium in September?

    Karl

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