Regardless of who wins Iran’s elections, he will not be as beneficial for Israel and for the rest of the civilized world as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The departing Iranian president has been the best PR Israel could have hoped for. He made an incredibly compelling case for not letting Iran acquire nuclear capability. He was the ugly façade that made all intelligent people pay attention to Iran’s bullying, conspiring and directing global terror activities, rewriting history, and telling all of us how much he wanted to wipe Israel off the map.
He alerted us; he was letting us in on Iran’s intentions. His denials of Iran’s quest for nukes were not believable. His demeanor and his personality invited suspicion, hostility and antipathy.
Most Americans have been unaware of the upcoming danger Iran has been posing to the world. But Mr. Ahmadinejad has made good where Israeli Prime Minister, Benyamin Netanyahu, has had seen only a limited success—convincing many Americans that the Iranian regime was dangerously militant, that the US could become a victim of its hate-driven, insane Islamic objectives—that it’s time for preventive action.
In addition to raising awareness of the upcoming Iranian threat to the US, Mr. Ahmadinejad has been successful in stirring up emotions. His flaming rhetoric, lies, hypocrisy, denial of facts and history, his genocidal threats, and his exasperating demeanor served to convince the American public of the ugly truth—that the Iranian regime and its leaders are evil.
The president of Iran serves at the pleasure of the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei—a write-wing extremist, a religious nut and the true leader of the Iranian dictatorship. When it comes to foreign policy, to military-related decisions such as “nukes or no-nukes”, Khamenei is the only decision maker. The president is merely a façade, a puppet placed in front of the world as the key messenger, delivering the Supreme Leader’s edicts.
To sum up, Ahmadinejad has been a wake-up call, the horn of an incoming train, the canary in the coal mine—I will greatly miss him.
The Iranian election is a travesty. It bears the same stench as elections in the former Soviet Union, Mubarak’s Egypt, and other dictatorships where it does not matter who votes for what candidate. The only thing that matters is who does the counting, or who picks the candidates.
Imagine an election in the US where the only candidates allowed to compete for the top job are members of the Tea Party, or picture an Israeli election where no party other than United Torah Judaism is on ballot. This is what elections in Iran are like.
The change in leadership at the Iranian presidency level contains a great deal of peril since whoever wins the phony election may be perceived as a moderate by the west, only because he does not come out of his leech-filled closet. A win by a perceived soft-spoken or a perceived moderate could have enabled Iran to break the isolation, avoid western sanctions, grant legitimacy to the Ayatollah’s regime, then move it more rapidly toward the nuclear bomb. Anyone who can put down that crack pipe and get a grip on reality could see the teeth of that jaw trap.
Replacing one loud-mouth Iranian president with a soft-spoken lipstick-wearing pig can only contribute to a faster-growing, untreated cancer. Masking a problem does not make it go away; it only wards off treatment; it only speeds up the emergence of its ugly end.
During a well-publicized interview in 2002, Samantha Power reflected on the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. She advocated a diversion of funds committed by the US Administration to Israel—for its defense needs—to the Palestinian Authority. She called for a US military intervention aimed at imposing a solution on the Palestinian question. She appeared to portray the Palestinians as victims of Israeli oppression.
In a radio interview in 2008, she doubled down on her extreme leftist’s views, responding to a question by complaining that "So much of it is about: 'Is he going to be good for the Jews?"
In a 2011 interview with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, she seemed to have changed course. Boteach reported that “Samantha Power seemed genuinely and deeply pained by the perception that she was not a friend of Israel.” She rationalized her 2002 comments by explaining that she was asked to respond to a “thought experiment”, a trick question— “what she would advise an American president if it seemed that either party in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict were moving toward genocide”—and that she stumbled, nose-diving into that trap. Had she had more media experience, she should not have responded. She alluded to the fact that her words were taken out of full context.
Given the multi-colored picture painted above, the question of whether or not Ms. Power’s new appointment is “good for the Jews” is not a trivial one. Still, the answer, in my opinion, is fairly obvious. Samantha Power’s earlier views concerning Israel will not be pertinent to her job in the UN.
Here is why.
The UN ambassador is merely a messenger. He or she serves at the pleasure of the president of the US. Although ambassadors write their own speeches, they follow talking points consistent with US policy determined by the president.
Regardless of their brilliance or points-made, speeches in the UN do not sway opinions. All ambassadors follow voting choices inspired and determined by their bosses, the top leaders, the true policy makers in their country. Ethics and justice are as dead as Latin. Politics and venal national interests rule the roost in the UN.
Samantha Power will follow directions, passed on to her by President Obama when it comes to voting choices and dealings with other diplomats, regardless of her personal preferences or emotional brainwaves.
And when it comes to the president, we have witnessed a dramatic evolution in his attitude toward the Jewish state in general, and concerning the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in particular. When President Obama took office in 2009 he believed that Israel was at fault for the unending stalemate in the “Peace Process”; he believed that the Arab countries and Iran could be won over by his show of respect and admiration to the Muslim world. By 2013, he appears to have learned a lesson. He understands the reality of the situation. He does not merely say that he is a true supporter of the Jewish state; he delivers, and he does so with unprecedented military and intelligence cooperation, significant financial support, perseverance before an extensive anti-Israel lobbying consensus in the UN Security Council, while employing the US Veto power time and again to stop bullying the Jewish State.
But above all, we must remind ourselves that leaders go through a life changing reality check once they assume power. On their campaign trail, or while in the political Opposition Party, they stick to popular ideals; they advocate solutions that make their supporters and potential voters feel good. They do so with no consideration or understanding of political, economic and national security constraints. It’s easy and trendy when the buck stops somewhere else.
Samantha Power was not representing her country when she was making her unfortunate remarks. She could afford articulating “shoot from the hip” ideals as advocated repeatedly by the extreme left; she represented no one else but herself. When, all at once, her words and actions might stand for her country, her boss rather than her own naive ideologies, she would become increasingly more responsible, more self-scrutinizing, more educated about the actual realities of the Middle East.
I would not lose sleep, not even for a moment, as a consequence of Samantha Power’s elevation to the job of the next US ambassador to the UN.
Avi Perry is the author of “72 Virgins”—a popular thriller about a countdown to a terror attack on US soil. He is currently a talk show host at Paltalk News Network (PNN). He served as an intelligence expert for the Israeli government and was a professor at Northwestern University. He was a VP at NMS Communications, a Bell Laboratories distinguished staff member and manager, and a delegate of the US and Lucent Technologies to UN International Standards body. He is also the author of “Fundamentals of Voice Quality Engineering in Wireless Networks.” For more information, visit www.aviperry.org.
The year was 2009. I was a guest at a talk show, discussing my newly released book: 72 Virgins. People in the audience called in, referring to me as an Islamophobe. It was the first time I was accused of prejudice against, hatred towards, or irrational fear of Muslims. Those who tried to characterize me as such had no idea what the book was about, but they quickly jumped to conclusions basing their judgment on the evocative title. Some even claimed dishonestly to have read the book, but turned nonverbal or entirely wide of the mark when asked to reflect on the book’s theme.
Throughout the years that followed, I discussed the phenomenon of Islamic terror on my own talk show, whenever the subject came to the fore due to topical events covered by the major news media at the time. I always tried to emphasize, right from the outset, that I did not regard all Muslims as terrorists, and that I did recognize the fact that not all terrorists were Muslims.
My approach to characterizing Islamic terror has always been based on the fact that all reasonable people attributed it to “Radical Islam”—a global movement comprising al-Qaeda, its self-regulating extensions, and even some hot-headed, radicalized individuals with no direct ties to any of the larger Jihadi organizations.
I have also noted that Islam comprises 50% of the term “Radical Islam”, and that Radical Islamists commit their crimes in the name of their religion; they find proof, justification and reinforcement for their acts of terror in their sacred texts. I do not have to become a Qur’an or a Hadith expert to prove that point. I don’t even care if indeed the Qur’an calls for violence (which I believe to be a true characterization). It does not matter as long as the Jihadists claim that it does; they claim to abide by their prophet’s edicts. They keep justifying their acts of terror and violence by telling us that they follow their religious beliefs. What else is the root cause for their acts of terror?
Now, in the minds of many left-minded individuals, this is where I have been crossing the red line. I have been linking Islam with terror, they claim. The principal line of attack other than calling me an Islamophobe, where the term is sandwiched between some unprintable X-rated junk words, has always been consistent with my own approach. Their attack has always been packaged by: “And what about crimes and terror acts committed by Christians in the name of their religion?” and also: “I have a Muslim friend, yada, yada, yada…”
Right; I guess I need to say it one more time. Not all Muslims are terrorists, and not all terrorists are Muslims. Nevertheless, there is a significant segment among the Muslim population who commit terror acts in the name of their religion, a larger segment who do not resort to violence, but do support it wholeheartedly, and even a larger silent segment who neither support it nor condemn it, and thus, let it continue unchallenged. Fortunately, these three segments do not take account of all Muslims—there are also Muslims who view Radical Islam as alien to their interpretation of the Qur’an and to what they see as their peaceful religion.
And then, the fact that Christians—mostly in the distant past and to a lesser degree in the present—committed crimes in the name of their religion, should not be used to cover up the fact that in today’s world, a significant number of terror acts are committed in the name of Islam.
If admitting to the cold reality, while steering clear of expressing hatred towards, or irrational fear of all Muslims, (simply because they happened to be born Muslim) makes me an Islamophobe, so be it. Trying to cover up facts with the aim of protecting a criminal, ruthless underdog (merely because that particular group is perceived as the underdog) is not only corrupt. It is an ideology in need of being condemned.