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Down the Rabbit Hole

3:26 PM, Sep 25, 2009 • By RACHEL ABRAMS
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Wait a minute: Do 8 months of self-mortification and public pleading -- to the point of swallowing whole its bloody brutality to its own people -- on behalf of the peaceful applications of the Iranian nuclear program while in full possession of intelligence on its hidden nuclear facility not make liars of our no-more-politics-as-usual archetype-of-moral-superiority president and his finger-wagging goody-two-shoes of a secretary of state? If memory serves, withholding information for political purposes is a form of lying that sticks in the craw of lefty arbiters of morality at the Daily Dish and elsewhere, lying that at the very least must be punished by a reaming involving forestsful of newsprint and miles of cyberspace, if not by actual prosecution. And yet, on this very subject Mark Lynch takes reality and twists it into a pretzel of pro-Obamic sycophancy:

. . . the administration chose to go public as part of a calculated effort to ratchet up the credibility of the threat of tough sanctions ahead of the October 1 meeting between Iran and the P5+1 in Geneva. The public disclosure puts Iran on the back foot ahead of those talks, and appears to have encouraged Russia to more seriously consider supporting such sanctions (that, plus the missile defense decision probably). This has to change Iranian calculations -- indeed, the perception that the sanctions are now more likely is precisely what may lead the Iranians to make more concessions to avoid them.

Seriously? Russia is considering sanctions? That's interesting. Will Lynch now twist the Russian president's "I do not believe sanctions are the best way to achieve results. . . . I think we should continue to promote positive incentives for Iran and at the same time push it to make all its programs transparent and open" inside out to mean its opposite? (Even Andrew Sullivan isn't sure we have the nod of the Russki.) More important, does Lynch really believe "the credibility of the threat of tough sanctions" will lead to Iranian concessions? Or is he just hoping that if only he and his Obama-worshiping confederates say it often enough it will come true? How many years of failed sanctions is it going to take to force our foreign policy establishment to admit that the mullahs and their basij murderers just don't care? Appeasement has no credibility, as generations of imprisoned Russian and Cuban human rights activists will attest.

As for Sullivan himself, he falls, chest heaving, down the Maureen Dowd rabbit hole, trailing that old Obamic mojo along with him:

And so you see the Obama mojo again. . . . He busts Ahmadinejad in a air-tight case that focuses on active Iranian deception. All this, of course, may still not be enough. Putin's position remains opaque; and China is still not on the full wagon. But can anyone say that the isolation of Iran has weakened under Obama?

If you add to the mix the critical factor of the Green Revolution, then the West's position vis-a-vis Iran has improved immensely in the last eight months. And if you believe that Obama's Cairo speech was at least a positive factor in helping bring that about - then the promise of the Obama era in American foreign policy begins to take shape.

That's more of a threat than a promise, really. And it's only a matter of degree, the difference between believing this stuff and wandering around the George Washington Bridge bus station in August wearing six overcoats.