Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Obama angers Iran

Pres. Obama wanted to improve Iran-US relations. Bret Stephens explains how the Iranian government reacted to his message:

Mr. Obama's solicitous message, timed to the Persian New Year's celebration of Nowruz, met a blunt response from the Islamic Republic's supreme leader, Ali Khamenei: "He insulted the Islamic Republic of Iran from the first day," he said. "If you are right that change has come, where is that change?" To this, soi-disant Iran experts and latter-day Walter Durantys explain that it is merely Mr. Khamenei's opening gambit in what promises to be a glorious new chapter in Iranian-U.S. relations.

Maybe the experts never got the message about no meaning no. And maybe Mr. Obama forgot that the late Ayatollah Khomeini tried to ban Nowruz, a pre-Islamic tradition, and that both Mr. Khamenei and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have sought to curtail and Islamicize the holiday against widespread resistance. [emph. added]

Separately, Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez called Obama an "ignoramus."

So far, Obama's policy of reaching out to US enemies has not fared well.

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