Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Obama's First Presidential Interview...on Al Arabiya

President Barack Hussein Obama elected to do his first official presidential interview with Arab news station al-Arabiya. The full transcript is here

As is normal with the new president, there were a great many platitudes and few specifics.

Two things I found significant.

One of the things was Obama's promise to restore relations with the Arab world to "the same respect and partnership that America had with the Muslim world as recently as 20 or 30 years ago..." or to those of you who can't be bothered to count backwards, to the Clinton and Carter years respectively.

That appears to be pretty much where we're heading.

The second thing was his choice of al-Arabiya itself as a venue. While not a s radical as al-Jazeera or al-Manor, al-Arabiya is not exactly a paragon of moderationas most Americans would look at it.

Obama's entire tone is similar to Bush's statement about appointing an envoy to the jihad friendly anti-Semitic Organization of Islamic Councils ( OIC) "to listen and to learn."

While the president's non-confrontational tone is understandable, in order to restore relations with the Arab world as he says he wants, he is going to have to give them Israel's scalp, endorse the Saudi 'peace' ultimatum in full and radically change America's foreign policy.

Given the steps he's taken in the last few days and the nature of the advisers around him, I wouldn't be surprised if that's exactly what he has in mind.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Obama is not in a position to "give Israel's scalp." America has a massive national debt, its military is worn thin from the continued deployments in Iraq, Afghanistan and elswhere, and its economy is struggling badly. As such, America and Obama are in no position to pose much of any threat to Israel. Israel can and should say no to America and its leaders if they expect Israel to do something contrary to Israel's interests.

Given America's precarious position in the world today it is some what understandable that Mr. Obama would want to do an interview on Arab television. Unfortunately given the nature of Islam and the extreme contempt held for America in that part of the world Mr. Obama or any other American leader who tries this will probably come up bankrupt. In other words, this is an excersize in futility on the part of Mr. Obama. Its a pity he doesn't understand that and its a pity he does not have better advisors around him who would be able to explain to him that he is wasting his time in this venue.

In order to "listen and learn", this has to go both ways. Arabs and their leaders need to be able to listen and learn from us as well. The listening and learning cannot go only one way, as it has for a very long time now.

Perhaps in a few years to a few decades the Arabs will be ready for constructive dialog with the Aemricans. Right now they aren't and I don't see them being ready in foreseeable future.

In the mean time America should seek to disengage from the Middle East. The following policies should be undertaken. 1.)Seucre the borders. 2.)Place a moratorium on immigration from Middle Eastern countries. 3.) Develop our own oil and gas reserves. 4.)Build more refineries. 5.) Closely monitor the mosques.

Disengagement from the Middle East has become even more imperative, as the Russians and the Chinese are heavily involved in the Middle East. Right now America and its military are in no condition to win a military conflict with either Russia or China and the Aemrican military is steadily falling even further behind those countries nor can America win a war against the combined forces of the Arab world either. In additon to this America has nothing of value to trade with the Arabs for their good will either. As such, the only choice for America is complete disengagement from that part of the world.