Sunday, November 9, 2008


When Barack Obama gave his first news conference last Friday, he was asked about a letter sent by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad congratulating the U.S. president-elect. Obama said he would study the letter and respond "appropriately."

But why did Obama need to add that Iran must stop "supporting terrorists?" And why did he also think it necessary to say that the U.S. would never let Iran obtain nuclear weapons?

This is the same old Bush/Cheney bellicose blustering about Iran. Instead of engaging Iran and its leaders with diplomacy and respect, Bush/Cheney and now Obama somehow think they must oppose Iran's legitimate quest for nuclear technology. Iran has said many times it has no interest in nuclear weapons. Why must Obama now contradict them when there is no credible evidence to the contrary?

And as far as Iran's support for "terrorists," I assume Obama refers to Hezbollah in Lebanon. Is Hezbollah a "terrorist organization?" Or is it really an indigenous Lebanese social/economic/military organization that represents an insurgency against Israel and its restrictive policies vis-a-vis the Palestinians. Just because the U.S. government has labeled it a terrorist organization, following the lead of Israel, this does not ipso facto mean that Hezbollah is engaged in "terrorism." What is terrorism to Israel may be liberation insurgency to the majority of Lebanese.

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