Barry, don’t do it again

(FOX News and the rest of the GOP gasbaggery establishment were outraged when Obama didn’t support recently overthrown Arab leaders who had been our friends – even if their countrymen had not. Wonder what they’ll say now?)

Palavi ascends the Peacock Throne

In October of 1979, under political pressure, Jimmy Carter made the disastrous decision to allow the newly overthrown dictator, the Shah of Iran, to come to the US for ‘medical treatment’. That didn’t work out so well.  A month later, the US Embassy in Tehran was stormed by angry Iranians. They took 66 Americans hostage and held them until the day of Ronald Reagan’s inauguration in 1981.

When the Shah requested ‘medical’ asylum, US-Iranian relations were already shaky and Carter himself at first was opposed to the idea. But he allowed himself to be convinced since the Shah had been one of ‘our’ guys, pretty much installed on the Peacock Throne by the CIA.

And here we go again – sorta. I worried about this in a post last month. And now the Obama Administration is going ahead. They’ve agreed to take in President Salah of Yemen – who resigned yesterday (leaving his own people in charge)  – for ‘medical’ treatment. (Salah had already been treated in Dubai – where the care is superb.) He says he’ll return. Yup.

Certainly Yemen isn’t Iran and the recently ‘resigned’ Salah isn’t the Shah. But his authoritarian regime killed hundreds of protestors and relations between us are not particularly friendly.

Do we ever learn?

 

6 responses to “Barry, don’t do it again

  1. Do we ever learn? Nope, and never will.

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  2. If we back a foreign leader but are unwilling to do what is necessary to keep him in power, we have a certain obligation to take him in when things “go south.” Failure to abide by that simple principle makes it that much harder to get any leader to work with us.

    And yes, nasty tyrants or not, we need some of these people because the alternatives are even worse, at least for the international community.

    The lesson Obama better bloody well learn is to pull out of those countries when we take the ex-leader in. The Consulate and/or Embassy staff should be un-assing the AO even as the ex-leader is doing so.

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    • Well jonolan, there are allies and allies. There are those of ‘convenience’ and those who share our values. Most of our alliances are with nations and not just thier leaders. Sure we support some odious governments for geo political reasibs, But supporting that government’s disgraced ‘leader’ at the cost of our own security? Suicide.

      And when was Yemen ever our ally? They attacked our embassy in ’08 and we closed it in 2010. They don’t much like us.

      The Iranian revolution was blowback for our overthrowing their democratically elected government in 1953 and installing Palavi. More than anything else, that radicalized Iran and led to the 1979 revolution.

      The President in ’53 was a strong ally of the US – totally Westernized and the ‘toast’ of the town when he visited Western capitals. But he leaned a bit left and that offended many in the US, especially in the CIA. Look at some photos from Iran before that coup – you won’t see Arab dress in the streets. People wore dresses and suits. Men and women walked the streets together. The country was Islamic, not Islamist. We cooked our own goose there.

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  3. If you really look, you’ll find that we support leaders at least as often as peoples, though that does fall into the category of “there are allies and allies.”

    As for it being suicide – It’s suicide not to do so as much as it is suicide to do so foolishly and without understanding the consequences and taking steps to mitigate them.

    As for the Shah – You’re absolutely right and I won’t say otherwise. That was one of America’s greater blunders in geopolitics. It was, however, made worse – much worse – by Carter’s refusal to take mitigating steps in the lead up to the crisis and to properly take remedial steps to resolve it.

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    • We allied with a lot of leaders as part of Cold War strategy. Pinochet and Batista were perfect examples of that. Even the Saudis – beyond the oli thing – were seen as bullworks against Soviet expansion, in that they could exert influence in the Arab world.

      I’m not sure what mitigating steps Carter could have taken, but allowing the Shah in was the catalyst that brought on the hostage crisis.

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      • First, he could have had Khomeini assassinated while he was in France – before he became a real problem.

        Second, if the first step was unpalatable – fair enough BTW – closing the embassy when the revolution started and writing off normal relations with the revolutionary government who overthrew our puppet right then and there would have been a sensible course of action.

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