So George Bush said this today at the Knesset in Israel:
Some seem to believe we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along. We
have heard this foolish delusion before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in
1939, an American senator declared: 'Lord, if only I could have talked to
Hitler, all of this might have been avoided.' We have an obligation to call this
what it is –- the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly
discredited by history.
We don't know specifically the identity of "some," of course. Based on what I can tell, the some could apply to hundreds of American politicians, thousands of European politicians and millions of people around the world.
For some reason , Barack Obama thought that George W. Bush meant him, and responded this way:
It is sad that President Bush would use a speech to the Knesset on the 60th anniversary of Israel's independence to launch a false political attack. It is
time to turn the page on eight years of policies that have strengthened Iran and
failed to secure America or our ally Israel. Instead of tough talk and no
action, we need to do what Kennedy, Nixon and Reagan did and use all elements of
American power -- including tough, principled, and direct diplomacy - to
pressure countries like Iran and Syria. George Bush knows that I have never
supported engagement with terrorists, and the President's extraordinary
politicization of foreign policy and the politics of fear do nothing to secure
the American people or our stalwart ally Israel.
Just a couple of things:
Obama is wrong, of course. Reagan never negotiated directly with countries like Libya or North Korea. Neither Kennedy, Nixon nor Reagan ever directly negotiated with Cuba. Nor have any of their successors. If Obama believes that we should directly negotiate with all nations, regardless of how heinous the governments of those nations are, he can certainly pursue that should he get elected president. But he'll be the first president in a long time to do so. Maybe the only president.
Second, Obama has one definite credibility issue on the matter of talking with Hamas. One of his advisers, Robert Malley, was in regular contact with Hamas. Once word of that got out, Obama fired him. Apparently Obama was shocked, shocked that this sort of activity was going on in his establishment.
Finally, we know how George W. Bush feels about this issue. Nothing he said today is any different than anything else he's said previously. Lots of people have already discredited anything Bush says on this issue, or any other for that matter. So here's a question - why should Obama, or any of his supporters, care what George W. Bush thinks? If Bush is wrong and they are right, stuff like this should make them serene. Right?