Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Why I will not be jumping up and down and shedding tears of joy over Obama's inaugaration

Today is quite the day. People in the United States and Canada, as well as elsewhere in the world, are celebrating the end of the terms of the 43rd U.S. President and the beginning of the first term of the 44th, Barack Hussein Obama. To me, this will just be another day. Don't get me wrong, I wish him well and hope he is the most successful President that ever occupied the White House. I sincerely hope he can do all the things the faithful think he can do: walk on water, stop oceans from rising, heal the divide, bring world peace, etc., etc. But I am a realist. And the thing that makes me a realist is the realization that how we in the west think about the world is very different from how other people think about it. Obama does not have a rich resume on the international front.

Just as an example of what I am writing about, consider these excepts from the January 16 sermon by Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, chairman of Iran's Guardian Council, aired on Iranian television:

Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati: "God bless the President of Venezuela, who enthusiastically and courageously expelled the Israeli ambassador. Shame on the useless Arab rulers who, unlike Venezuela - which is not even an Islamic country - have not severed political ties [with Israel]. Does this cost you anything? Are you afraid of America? You should be afraid, because you lack faith and courage, and your peoples have no respect for you. So why shouldn’t you be afraid? You fear for your positions. You should be afraid.

"But come and join your people. In every country, the people are ready... Of course, the worst are Saudi Arabia and Egypt, because they are the great regional powers.

"When a demonstration took place somewhere in Saudi Arabia, it was silenced. They do not give people room to breathe there. At least in Egypt, there were some [demonstrations], but even there, silence rules. Sometimes we see [Mubarak] obeying America, and sometimes, we see that he is an ally of Israel.

"What is left for the people to do? They should fear the day when the people’s revolution, the rage of God, and the rage of the people grab them by their clothes and drag them down to collapse." [...]

"People Are Truly Amazed When They Watch a President [Obama]... Saying: 'My Only Concern is to Find a Dog For My Daughter'"

"The world is on a steep decline towards collapse. People are truly amazed when they watch a president [Obama] laughing and saying: 'My only concern is to find a dog for my daughter.' Phooey on you and those who voted for you! Is this how it should be? A president is not ashamed to be thinking about a dog, rather than about [the Israeli] foreign minister? This is how it is - they want to rule the world."

"Every Time I See That Woman’s [Livni's] Face, I Wish Somebody Would 'Waste' a Bullet On Her"

"On the other hand, every time I see that woman’s face, I wish somebody would 'waste' a bullet on her. I watched her say... First, she goes and shakes hands with the Egyptian president. Shame on him for shaking a woman’s hand - especially an enemy.


"I hope that the day will come - as conveyed in a message by our dear leader - when we all celebrate the victory of Hamas in Jerusalem, God willing."

Livini is Israel's Foreign Minister.

Tough to heal a divide with a cleric speaking for the religion of peace who thinks like Jannati.

Thanks to memri for the quotation.

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