We learn today:
The Obama administration on Friday made an emergency contribution of more than $20 million for urgent relief efforts in the Gazaa Strip, a day after the United Nations launched a flash appeal for $613 million to help Palestinians recover from Israel’s three-week military operation there.
This only emphasizes how misplaced and unwise were President Obama’s comments on Al Arabyia. Rather than apologizing for America, how much better it would have been for him to explain America’s ongoing efforts on behalf of Muslims, including its humanitarian support for the Palestinian people. Rather than harken back twenty or thirty years — to the nadir of American power — how much better it would have been to emphasize the dollars and lives expended to rescue Muslims from tyranny (e.g. Iraq, Bosnia) and poverty. And of course, the President’s comments lacked even a cursory appreciation for human rights. As Mark Steyn commented:
Well, you don’t have to be gay, an oppressed homosexual about to be executed. You don’t have to be a woman who’s being sold to an arranged child marriage. You just have to be a moderate, centrist Arab intellectual in, say, Cairo or Amman, and you listen to Obama sucking up to these creeps, and there’s nothing for you in it. What he’s doing is he says, he’s saying to hell with the Bush freedom agenda. We just want to get back to schmoozing the feted Arab dictatorships and the mullahs in Tehran all over again. And so if you’re a gay or a woman, you’re out of there. And as I said, if you’re a moderate Arab who just would like to have a free society in Cairo or Amman or wherever, you’re out of it, too. You’re on the Obama horizon. It was a pathetic, disgraceful Jimmy Carter speech.
Perhaps the swift rebuff from Ahmadinejad will be taken to heart. Groveling is unwise and counterproductive. America has a compelling case to present and the President should start presenting it.