In June, 1961, John Kennedy – just five months into his presidency – met for the first and only time with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushev. The blustering, peasant bully in the ill-fitting suit ripped the dapper young Harvard man apart. Khrushev humiliated Kennedy and read him as weak and inexperienced. With that image in mind, the cagey commie pushed until he brought the world to the brink of nuclear war in October of 1962.
Kennedy recovered by showing strength, resolution and leadership, but his initial weakness almost allowed for massive annihilation.
Barack Obama is having his JFK moment. Unfortunately, it’s circa June 1961 and not October 1962.
Saudi Arabia has threatened to prop up President Mubarak if the White House tries to force a swift change of regime in Egypt. In a testy personal telephone call on January 29, King Abdullah told President Obama not to humiliate Mr Mubarak and warned that he would step in to bankroll Egypt if the US withdrew its aid programme, worth $1.5 billion annually. America’s closest ally in the Gulf made clear that the Egyptian President must be allowed to stay on to oversee the transition towards peaceful democracy and then leave with dignity. “Mubarak and King Abdullah are not just allies, they are close friends, and the King is not about to see his friend cast aside and humiliated,” a senior source in the Saudi capital told The Times.
Republicans and, especially, conservatives evoke the memory of Ronald Reagan with the passion and loyalty of ministers quoting Scripture. Often, these homages to The Gipper are no more than pandering, but occasionally, there is enlightening merit to the summoning of RR’s spirit.
As you might have guessed, this is one of those occasions.
Whether you are a Republican, Democrat, liberal, conservative, libertarian, socialist, communist, agnostic or Canadian, can you, for even a fleeting moment, imagine any foreign leader telling Ronald Reagan what to do?
Methinks it more likely that Dutch would have offered His Royal Highness his own California rawhide rear end for smooching. But then, I can’t picture Reagan bowing to anyone, either.
Although John Kennedy’s inexperience and likely arrogance allowed a perception of impotence, he proved himself to be stronger and wiser than his adversaries believed possible.
Obama, instead of growing in resolve, is clearly becoming all the more vulnerable, and he’s taking the United States with him into the chasm of cowardice. Foreign leaders are so emboldened as to dictate to him how our country will conduct our affairs.
Is there any reason, is there anything in his history that suggests he will do what a real American president would do? Or, will he continue to kowtow, apologize, acquiesce and surrender?