NEWS & OPINION: Cheney’s effort to emulate Stalin

Cheney, like president, has a warning for Iran

“The Iranian regime needs to know that if it stays on its present course, the international community is prepared to impose serious consequences,” Mr. Cheney said, without specifying what those might be. “The United States joins other nations in sending a clear message: We will not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon.”

Mr. Cheney delivered his warnings during a wide-ranging foreign policy speech to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a research organization. During the 35-minute talk, he also took aim at Syria, accusing Damascus of using “bribery and intimidation” to influence the coming elections in Lebanon, and he presented the case for the administration’s muscular approach to investigating suspected terrorists.

But Mr. Cheney reserved his harshest language for Iran. Calling it “the world’s most active state sponsor of terrorism,” he said, “our country, and the entire international community, cannot stand by as a terror-supporting state fulfills its most aggressive ambitions.” [complete article]

Serious consequences

As time passed, the terrorists believed they’d exposed a certain weakness and lack of confidence in the West, particularly in America. Dr. Bernard Lewis explained the terrorists’ reasoning this way: “During the Cold War,” Dr. Lewis wrote, “two things came to be known and generally recognized in the Middle East concerning the two rival superpowers. If you did anything to annoy the Russians, punishment would be swift and dire. If you said or did anything against the Americans, not only would there be no punishment; there might even be some possibility of reward, as the usual anxious procession of diplomats and politicians, journalists and scholars and miscellaneous others came with their usual pleading inquiries: ‘What have we done to offend you? What can we do to put it right?'” End quote.

It’s really an appallingly strange time in our country. We have a singularly powerful Vice-President (compared to any of his predecessors)–openly quite enamored by the tactics employed by the Soviet Union–our former arch-foe whose human rights standards we derided. Indeed, we fought a decades-long Cold War so that Western style constitutional freedoms would trump Soviet authoritarianism. But yes, from this Sovietophile posture, use of torture and black-sites and detention without habeas corpus protections makes all the sense in the world, doesn’t it? Because we have a Vice-President all but openly emulating and cheer-leading the tactics of the KGB, not in the wilds of Wyoming, but to a soi disant sophisticated audience in Washington DC. Put differently, he is very proud of his world-view, indeed eager to share it with Beltway ‘elites’. Who will clear this dangerous rot out of Washington and help us restore our good name? [complete article]

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