Let me repeat that.
But if the president actually does understand the problems of Islam and
the West, he would not have said some of the things in his speech. He
would not have suggested that the Arab-Israeli conflict is
fundamentally about Israeli West Bank settlements or about Israel’s
denial of the Palestinians’ “legitimate aspirations” for a state of
their own in the West Bank and Gaza. The notion that Arab objections to
the Jewish state are focused narrowly on the territories the Arabs lost
to Israel in 1967 is ahistorical in a way that should be obvious: The
conflict predated the 1967 war, or there would not have been a 1967
war, let alone the Arab-Israeli War of 1948-49.
As for Iran, if Mr. Obama understood the regime’s hostility to the
United States, his Cairo speech would not have suggested the antagonism
derives from the Eisenhower administration’s role in the 1953 coup in
Iran. That country’s theocratic current rulers hardly mourn the
overthrown leftist modernizer Mohammed Mosaddegh.
The Iranian regime clerics believe the most basic ideas and
institutions of the democratic West – including popular sovereignty,
women’s rights and the separation of religion and state – insult God’s
law and God’s sovereignty. To assume that the differences between the
United States and Iranian regime are merely historical grievances or
policy disagreements is as big an error as to ignore the ideological
dimension of the U.S. conflicts with fascism, Nazism and communism.
So let me see if I’ve got this right. If Barack Obama would just admit that Iran is evil to the core and cannot be dealt with in any way other than turning it into a nuclear wasteland, and that Arabs hate peace and always will, then he’d prove to Doug Feith that he really knew what he was talking about.
Pardon me if I don’t see the urgency in getting right on top of that.