Friday, June 11, 2010

'Isolated'--But Only in the Our-Door-Is-Open-C'mon-In Sense

In the wake of "bold" new sanctions, Charles Krauthammer questions Obama's oft-stated contention that Iran is "isolated". From NRO:
...For example, in his State of the Union address, President Obama declared that “the Islamic Republic of Iran is more isolated.” Two months later, Vice President Biden asserted that “since our administration has come to power, I would point out that Iran is more isolated — internally, externally — has fewer friends in the world.” At the signing of the START treaty in April, Obama declared that “those nations that refuse to meet their obligations [to the Non-Proliferation Treaty, i.e., Iran] will be isolated.”
Really? On Tuesday, one day before the president touted passage of a surpassingly weak U.N. resolution and declared Iran yet more isolated, the leaders of Russia, Turkey, and Iran gathered at a security summit in Istanbul “in a display of regional power that appeared to be calculated to test the United States,” as the New York Times put it. I would add: And calculated to demonstrate the hollowness of U.S. claims of Iranian isolation, and to flaunt Iran’s growing ties with Russia and quasi-alliance with Turkey, a NATO member.
Apart from the fact that isolation is hardly an end in itself and is pointless if Iran rushes headlong to become a nuclear power regardless, the very claim of Iran’s increasing isolation is increasingly implausible. Just last month, Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad hosted an ostentatious love fest in Tehran with the leaders of Turkey and Brazil. The three raised hands together and announced a uranium-transfer deal that was designed to torpedo U.S. attempts to impose U.N. sanctions.
Six weeks ago, Iran was elected to the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women, a grotesque choice that mocked Obama’s attempt to isolate and delegitimize Iran in the very international institutions he treasures.
Increasing isolation? In the last year alone, Ahmadinejad has been welcomed in Kabul, Istanbul, Copenhagen, Caracas, Brasilia, La Paz, Senegal, and Gambia. Today, he is in China...
If it's Tuesday, this must be Dakar? If that's "isolated," how many places would he have to visit to be considered popular?

Update: Claudia Rosett isn't terribly impressed by the latest lame round of "sanctions". She says "the clock is ticking" till nuclear blast-off time.

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