"Most of my frustration is really with the process of getting anything done in Washington, which is not something Obama can unilaterally change, nimbly circumvent or blithely ignore" - Eugene Robinson
“It seems this is politics, but politics can still ruin the day.” - Trita Parsi
going on in Iran right now, and the internal debate over the nuclear issue. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is being the reasonable party, saying that Iran should accept the current nuclear deal, while everyone else is saying no, don't do it. Their reasons range from not trusting the West, thinking there must be a trap somewhere, to others who are taking the opposite line to whatever Ahmadinejad wants to do: “It is the worst case scenario because it can leave people with the impression diplomacy has been tried and failed, whereas in reality it came at a point when Iran is too politically divided and incapable of making decisions of this magnitude,” said Trita Parsi.
Looking at this happening in another country makes the same arguments here look shallow and foolish, but I doubt that Bill Kristol and others have the ability for self-introspection. And Iran's version of Dick Cheney, who also seems to have Lou Dobb's Disease, the lovable and wacky Ayatollah Ali Khameni, has come out in a public statement dissing both Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Barack Obama: "Iran's supreme leader, spurning what he described as several personal overtures from President Obama, warned Tuesday that negotiating with United States was "naive and perverted" and said Iranian politicians should not be "deceived" into starting such talks." Just like Iran's nuclear negotiators won't say what is wrong with the current international proposal, Ali didn't bother to explain why negotiating was naive and perverted. I think he has a strange way of defining kinky; how does a paranoid autocrat behave in his bedroom at night? Of course, if anyone told they'd be sentenced to 1000 lashes...
What is the Ayatollah complaining about? He is upset that: "...Obama has approached him several times through oral and written messages. It was the second time that Khamenei, 70, who wields ultimate political and religious authority in Iran, has referred to Obama's outreach, in which the U.S. president reportedly has requested talks between the two estranged nations." Evidently the Ayatollah is intimidated by friendliness. He is so used to dealing with hardline thinkers who are adamant about their positions that he can't handle reasonable solutions.
"The new U.S. president has said nice things," Khamenei said in a speech Tuesday. "He has given us many spoken and written messages and said, 'Let's turn the page and create a new situation. Let's cooperate with each other in resolving world problems.' "
This is why countries that have old men with dying brain cells in charge can only respond with fear and anger, two signs of Alzheimer's. The people of Iran responding to their dissatisfaction over election fraud and staging largely peaceful protests? Crack down harshly, put as many in jail as you can, try and outlaw any other protest gatherings. Your imagined enemy making offers to talk and heal old wounds? Respond in a perverted way this Wednesday: "Only anti-American rallies in front of the former American Embassy in Tehran are legal," the head of Tehran's security forces said in a statement. "Other gatherings or rallies on Wednesday are illegal and will be strongly confronted by the police."
traveling on the new hamid highway...
In his victory speech to all Afghans, the newly declared President, Hamid Karzai, did two things. As expected, he acknowledged the corruption in his government and vowed to change it. If he does, this will be maybe the first honestly run government in the world, so good luck to that: "Afghanistan has been defamed by corruption. Our government has been defamed by corruption," Karzai told a press conference flanked by his controversial vice president Mohammed Qasim Fahim, who is widely accused of rights abuses. "We will strive, by any means possible, to eradicate this stain."
"We call on our Taliban brothers to come home and embrace their land," He is offering to make an inclusive government, with representation of Taliban interests, and is something that he has wanted to do for some time. If he can succeed in this, it would negate any reason for Western troops to be there, and all would become happy and joyous in one simple, elegant solution. The conservative hawks back in America will want to send in even more troops, make your decision already Mr Obama, let Stanley McChrystal win this war so we won't look like losers in our own minds, and he can begin his political career in victory when he runs against you in 2012...
Then, Afghanistan can become the tourist destination even more popular than Kurdistan. As Hamid previously wrote for the Afghan Ministry of Tourism: "I hope we will soon have the pleasure of welcoming you to Afghanistan; I can promise that the Afghan people will receive you with the heartfelt hospitality for which they have always been renowned." Oh yeah, and what about Osama bin Laden? He is probably still holed up in a resort in Pakistan's Swat Valley, hanging out by the swimming pool and watching television by satellite, partaking of more wives among the local population as a sign of his religious devotion...
how about some late night political jokes:
"This weekend for Halloween, President Obama wore chinos, a white button down shirt and a crew neck sweater. Yeah. Apparently, Obama went as the whitest president in the history of the United States." –Conan O'Brien
"This weekend in Afghanistan, opposition candidate Abdullah Abdullah dropped out of the runoff presidential election. Yep, Abdullah Abdullah says he wants to spend more time with his wife Marjorie Marjorie." –Conan O'Brien
"Well, how about those Afghanistan elections? You know, they had the first one and they thought, well, maybe something hincky with the first one. All right, if something is hincky, let's do it again. And now the opposition candidate Abdullah Abdullah has dropped out of the runoff election. He got the idea from watching the Phillies during the World Series." –David Letterman
"Yeah, no runoff election in Afghanistan. Apparently a second election would be way too expensive to rig." –David Letterman
"So Abdullah Abdullah says he is pulling out because he wants to spend more time with his wife, Paula Abdullah." –David Letterman
"So they've recounted all the votes from the first election in Afghanistan and congratulations to the new president, Al Franken." –David Letterman
"Here, of course, we celebrate Halloween. In Mexico they call it what? 'Day of the Dead,' where people believe the dead rise and walk the earth again. Or, as folks at Acorn call it, the 'Voter Registration Day.'" –Jay Leno
"At the White House on Saturday, the Obama's greeted trick-or-treaters. They gave them either M&Ms with the presidential seal on them or dried fruit. The dried fruit went to the kids who said their parents worked at Fox News." –Jay Leno
"This weekend, we turned the clocks back. Which means Congress had yet another hour not to read the new health care bill before they signed it." –Jay Leno
"According to a report on CNN today — this is a report on CNN today, and I quote, 'President Obama is close to formulating a new strategy for Afghanistan.' They say he'll either decide to add more troops, reduce the number of troops or keep the troop levels the same. Good, solid reporting." –Jay Leno
"The only opponent to Afghan President Hamid Karzai has backed out of the planned recount. He's not going to be in the race. He says he wants to spend more time with his family and not get killed." –Jay Leno
"New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine said he's considering leasing the New Jersey Turnpike to help raise money for the state. He's going to lease out the New Jersey Turnpike. And of course, a lot of people are furious about this. Because, you know, parts of the Jersey Turnpike are considered a sacred mob burial ground." –Jay Leno
"Executives of America's 28 largest banks met with Federal Reserve supervisors to discuss and regulate the banks' pay policies, which is pretty amazing. There's still 28 banks left in this country?" –Jay Leno
"I just love Halloween. It's the only time of the year you get to see a Ghostbuster making out with Sarah Palin." –Jimmy Fallon
"Even the Obamas got into the Halloween spirit. They handed out dried fruit to 2,000 trick or treaters. And just like that, they created 2,000 more Republicans." –Jimmy Fallon
"The White House predicted there would be 120 million doses of swine flu vaccines available today. But right now, there are only 26 million. Yeah, they overshot by so much, they are all getting jobs as pilots for Northwest Airlines." –Jimmy Fallon
"The Pentagon announced today, they have given the swine flu vaccines to every detainee at Guantanamo Bay. The detainees were like, 'Hey, whatever happened to closing this place?'" –Jimmy Fallon
"Abdullah Abdullah just quit next week's runoff election against Afghanistan's President Hamid Karzi. Abdullah Abdullah said, he was just following in the footsteps of his role model, Palin Palin." –Jimmy Fallon