March 3, 2011
Obama at the AbyssBy James Lewis
It's crunch time in Washington, D.C. President Obama must know that a dozen Republicans are saving those boastful videotapes of Mr. O pushing President Mubarak out of power, followed by an endless series of breakdowns throughout the Arabic world.
Just think about that as a 30 second commercial next election year:
Obama: "Mubarak must resign. Now means Now!"
Map of the Middle East with fires exploding in a series from Tunisia to Bahrain, to the sound of breaking glassware. Over and over again.
Those chandeliers will still be falling from the ceilings in the next election campaign, because the instability in the Arab world is not going to be settled quickly. Obama will be seen as another Jimmy Carter, and like Carter, his first challenge will come from inside the Democratic Party.
It was Ted Kennedy who challenged Carter in the Democratic primaries after the Iranian fiasco. Kennedy weakened Carter, and Reagan got elected as a result. Democrats who lived through that disaster for the left haven't forgotten it, and Obama is now looking into the same abyss. His biggest challenge is likely to come from Hillary and Bill, who are aching for revenge.
But Hillary is also implicated in the fiasco in the Middle East, where Obama deliberately told Mubarak to leave, after raising expectations throughout the Muslim world that he couldn't possibly satisfy. The voters can also be reminded of HillaryCare, as ObamaCare runs into the longest economic recession in history.
Imagine a Republican ticket campaigning against Obama and Hillary in 2012. The Arab regimes from North Africa to the Gulf are in a death spiral. Egypt is gone as an American ally, Tunisia, Bahrain and Yemen are teetering. Obama's political fate is tied in with the Muslim world. He is now negotiating with the Taliban in Afghanistan, the regime that shielded Osama bin Laden to launch the 9/11 attack on New York and Washington. Maybe the voters will finally connect those dots. It is high time for them to do so.
If Ahmadinejad explodes a nuclear bomb in the next year (as predicted), even Americans who are in deep denial now will finally feel the cold wind from an unstable Third World armed with missiles and nukes. Obama and the Democrats have been playing footsie with Muslim Brotherhood fronts like CAIR. Obama's billion-dollar presidential run was probably financed in part by foreign sources. Untold millions flowed in packaged in email donations under the reporting limit (read: oil money from the Middle East). All the Democrats are attracted to oil money like horse flies to whatever metaphor you like.
We are seeing a near-repeat of the politics of 1948, when the Democrats were forced to choose between Stalin's Communists and Truman's Democrats. It was a time of mass disillusionment with a media-created leftist dream, one in which Uncle Joe Stalin was the "friend" who fought the Nazis with American aid. Ronald Reagan was president of the Screen Actor's Guild at that time, and he had to fight the Stalinists in Hollywood on a daily basis. Based on that experience, Reagan changed from a registered Democrat to a Republican.
Stalin's deadly threat became clear to everybody soon after Hitler fell, and Americans didn't want to lose more boys in another gigantic war. They wanted the boys to come home, and when Stalin exploded the bomb in 1953, using secrets stolen from the Manhattan Project, they fell out of love with the left. The Reds had infiltrated the schools and colleges, the government and the media, all the way to FDR's White House. Then Stalin tore off the mask.
Sound familiar? That's the abyss Obama is looking into at this very moment.
In Egypt last week, the biggest Muslim radical theocrat, Yussuf Al Qaradawi, flew back from exile and addressed a million cheering supporters at Tahrir Square. The Muslim Brotherhood is now openly turning into a political party, and there are even more extremist groups that will get into parliament.
Radical Muslims have taken over after four different elections in the last three decades: Khomeini in Tehran, Hamas in Gaza, the Turkish Mu Bros in Ankara (remember the suiciders on the cruise ship Mavi Marmara? That ship was owned by the Mu Bro party.). And now we have Hezb'allah taking over Lebanon. Syria and Turkey have formal alliances with the radicals in Tehran.
The Muslim world is being torn between modernizers and medieval reactionaries. That struggle has been going on since Ataturk modernized Turkey after World War I. It is a constant internal tug-of-war in Pakistan and Afghanistan as well. Nobody knows where the dominos will fall.
We do know that every Muslim faction wants the tie-breaker of Weapons of Mass Destruction. Everybody will use anti-Western and anti-Israel propaganda to gain an advantage.
The Russians and Chinese have been trying to fish in these troubled waters, too, but ultimately they, too, are vulnerable to Muslim regimes with nuclear weapons. Russia has seen major suicide bombing attacks already. Moscow and Beijing have been angling for advantage against the United States, but their heads are buried in the sand. Through North Korea, China is helping to nuclearize the Middle East and Pakistan. Russia is building the Bushehr reactor in Iran. Post-Soviet Russia must think of itself as a European power, its fate tied in with the West. China is becoming the biggest trading power in the world, and that means its fate is tied in with free markets in oil, and with its biggest customers in America and Europe. Putin is mentally stuck in the Soviet past, and Hu grew up under Mao Zedong. They will have to start thinking like rational actors in a world of substantially free trade. Their political traditions are imperialistic, but in the modern world, trade brings more wealth than coercion.
We are seeing the biggest international shake-up since 1953, the year Stalin died and the Soviet Union went nuclear.
Obama is not going to keep all those dominos from falling, because nobody can. At least half the American voters will hold him responsible, and they will be right, because Obama is basically an agitator. That's Alinsky dogma. Obama always gambles that change will come out on his side, when in fact nobody knows the outcome. He's an irresponsible gambler. Reality always catches up with gamblers, sooner or later.
Obama constantly dances away from any responsibility for domestic and foreign fiascos. So far the media have supported his constant re-writing of reality. But if and when a Democrat emerges who can beat Obama and maybe beat a Republican, the media will start to think the unthinkable: Can Obama lose in 2012?
The answer is: You betcha!
In the long term this is a battle between modernity and medievalism in the Muslim world. But in the short term it will be one threat of nuclear war after another.
American voters will soon start to look for adults to lead the country. Not ego-tripping adolescents.