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Jimmy Carter’s Blame Game By: Lowell Ponte
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, August 08, 2006


Earlier this month in a Washington Post Op-Ed article Jimmy Carter blamed the current violence in Lebanon and Gaza on Israel, which had purportedly violated “key U.N. resolutions…by occupying Arab lands and oppressing Palestinians.” He got through an entire article without ever mentioning that Lebanon had failed to comply with the 2004 United Nations Security Council Resolution 1559, which called on Lebanon to disarm the terrorist group Hezbollah whose members now sit in its legislature and cabinet.

Last February 20 in another Washington Post piece Mr. Carter attacked Israel for withholding tax revenues from the new Palestinian Authority government following its takeover by the terrorist group Hamas. Mr. Carter described rocket-throwing Hamas as “militants” who might be provoked to cause “devastating consequences” as a result of  American “collusion” with Israel.

Days ago President Carter wrote again that Israel should “withdraw from all Lebanese territory, including Shebaa Farms” (a region regarded by the U.N. as Syrian, not Lebanese land).

Too much of a bad thing, these editorials remind us that Mr. Carter has described Hamas murderers as “so-called terrorists. That in a 1996 New York Times Op-Ed piece he called for cutting off all U.S. financial aid to Israel until it gave in to Islamist demands to surrender territory.  That the Carter Center in Atlanta, heavily funded by the Saudis and other Muslims, rushed to give its imprimatur to the Hamas victory in the latest Palestinian election, even though nine elected Hamas lawmakers are outlaws imprisoned for terrorism. 

It is worth remembering, given Carter’s senescent leftism and the unremitting onslaught of criticism of  Israel verging on anti-Semitism,  that this man personally destroyed the structure of international security and peace that earlier Presidents of both parties had carefully built.

In the Middle East during the 1960s and 70s the cornerstone of American security was our ally the Shah of Iran. The Shah was heavy-handed, but his government was establishing equal rights for women, modernity, and a friendly open door between America’s culture and the Muslim world. The Shah also provided the oil that kept Israel afloat during Arab oil embargoes of the 1970s.

 

And under the Shah, Iran was America’s pillar of strength in the oil-rich Persian Gulf region during the Cold War. As such, the Shah was a prime target for subversion by Iran’s neighbor the Soviet Union. And the Shah resisted this by arresting and torturing up to 3,000 Soviet agents in his country because this was a deadly game played for keeps.

 

Carter, persuaded by leftist advisors that the Shah was therefore an intolerable violator of human rights, withdrew U.S. support from his government.  Carter even ordered the Central Intelligence Agency to end bribes paid to the Mullahs to cool their criticism of the Shah in Iran’s mosques. The Shah was toppled and replaced by the theocratic dictatorship the rules today. Among the Ayatollah Khomeini’s first acts was to execute more than 20,000 people, including most of the 3,000 Marxists Carter had been willing to destroy an American ally to help.

 

Without the Shah to prevent it, war then started between Iran and neighboring Iraq, a war that cost at least 500,000 lives and turned Saddam Hussein’s regime into the planet’s fourth biggest military power, one that used poison gas on both Iranians and its own people.

 

On Iran’s eastern border, the Soviet Union exploited the chaotic situation to invade Afghanistan, killing many more people and creating highly skilled terrorist Muslim “holy warriors,” some of whom had been mobilized into a group called Al Qaeda led by a radicalized millionaire Saudi playboy named Osama bin Laden.

 

The new theocratic regime in Iran inspired and still inspires bin Laden and other fanatics to seek the overthrow of all Muslim nations that are friendly towards the West. The defeat the Soviets suffered in Afghanistan (thanks largely to U.S.-supplied Stinger anti-aircraft missiles) convinced bin Laden and others that the U.S. was a paper tiger that could be defeated too.

 

Jimmy Carter, in other words, is responsible for the end of a modernizing pro-American government in Iran. In fact, as Michael Ledeen has noted, a pledge Carter made to the Ayatollah Khomeini not to intervene in Iran’s internal affairs continues to hamstring U.S. policy towards Iran today.

 

Because Iran’s fanatical rulers spawned, armed and funded the terrorist group Hezbollah, Jimmy Carter is responsible for the fighting and deaths today in Lebanon. Because Iran has funded and armed Hamas, Carter is largely responsible for the situation today in Gaza.

 

Jimmy Carter, more than any other single politician alive today, is therefore responsible for global Islamo-fascist terrorism. No wonder he  is frantic to take attention away from his own culpability for all this bloodshed and horror by pointing fingers of blame, instead, at others such as Israel. .

 

But is Mr. Carter merely an idealist, a utopian who made mistakes because he stood for human rights, values and peace?  Two things weigh against such exoneration. The first is that Jimmy Carter has never shown remorse, taken responsibility or even acknowledged that his shortsighted simple-minded policies led to these horrors — which are human rights violations many magnitudes greater than anything the Shah of Iran ever came close to committing.  The second is that Carter has trekked to Havana to kiss Marxist dictator Fidel Castro on the lips and give propaganda aid and comfort to this mass murderer who had far, far more than 3,000 political prisoners at the time of Carter’s visit.

 

In his world travels since being removal from office by the voters in 1980, as even the liberal Washington Post has editorialized, Carter’s “willingness to engage with any dictator, no matter how odious, has at times been discomfiting.” What the Post failed to mention is that Jimmy Carter embraces only Marxist, anti-Semitic and anti-American dictators. If only the Shah had instead been a Marxist friend of the Soviet Union and renamed his nation the Peoples Socialist Republic of Iran, Jimmy Carter probably would have ceased all criticism of the Shah’s political prisoners and other human rights violations and the Ayatollah might never have come to power.

 

The Nobel Peace Prize committee credited Mr. Carter with one major accomplishment — brokering the 1978 Middle East Peace agreements between Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin.   Jimmy Carter, wrote Associated Press reporter Doug Mellgren, “was left out due to a technicality — he was not nominated in time.” But is this true, thereby making Carter’s 2002 Peace Prize the mere correction of a past oversight? Both Sadat and Begin were courageous statesmen who risked much to make this peace agreement. Begin angered his own political base by returning the battle-won Sinai to Egypt. Sadat, as he knew likely, would be assassinated for making peace with Israel. By comparison Jimmy Carter risked nothing and did almost nothing, except serve beverages and snacks to two statesmen who had come to Camp David already carrying the outline of their peace agreement.

 

And apparently the five members of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee weren’t even sure that Carter deserved it in 2002. Honoring Carter, said Committee chairman Gunnar Berge, “should be interpreted as a criticism of the line that the current [Bush] administration has taken. It’s a kick in the leg to all that follow the same line as the United States.”

 

“A ‘kick in the leg,’” reported Reuters journalist Alister Doyle, “is a Norwegian phrase meaning ‘a slap in the face.’” So the prize was intended not to honor Jimmy Carter so much as to insult and slap in the face the current American President George W. Bush for not following Carter’s policies of weakness, vacillation, and appeasement towards anti-American forces in the world.

 

Concerning the Carter Peace Prize and word that it was given to denigrate President George W. Bush’s pro-Israel, anti-Iraq policies, editorialized the otherwise-liberal New York Daily News, “Excuse us if we detect a whiff of anti-Semitism wafting from Oslo. It wouldn’t be the first time, Norwegian Nazis having happily collaborated with Hitler.”

 

“Jimmy Carter’s post-presidential career,” observed Slate Magazine’s Chris Suellentrop, “has been characterized by a seemingly irresistible impulse to continue the presidency that American voters ended in 1980. Nowhere is this tendency more evident that in Carter’s free-lance diplomatic efforts, which have been governed by an anti-democratic attitude.”

 

In November 1990, for example, the first Bush Administration was lobbying fellow United Nations Security Council members for a declaration empowering U.S. action to push invading Iraqi troops out of newly-occupied Kuwait in what would become the Gulf War.

 

As then-National Security Advisor General Brent Scowcroft recounted in the 1998 memoir A World Transformed co-authored with President George H.W. Bush, the Canadian Prime Minister sent them a letter just received from Jimmy Carter. The ex-President had written to all Security Council members asking them to reject the U.S. request for an ultimatum to Iraq and instead to support the perpetual delay proposed by the Arab League.

 

“It was an unbelievable letter, asking the other members of the council to vote against his own country,” wrote Scowcroft. “We found out about it only when one of the recipients sent us a copy…. It seemed to me that if there was ever a violation of the Logan Act prohibiting diplomacy by private citizens, this was it.”

 

In 1994 President Clinton “dispatched Carter to defuse an impending war with North Korea over that country’s nuclear program.” In violation of his directions and diplomatic protocol, wrote Suellentrop, Carter “conducted some free-lance diplomacy, this time on CNN. After meeting with Kim Il Sung, Carter went live on CNN International without telling the administration. His motive: Undermine the Clinton administration’s efforts to impose U.N. sanctions on North Korea.”

 

Of this incident, which opened the way for this Marxist dictatorship to acquire nuclear weapons, notes Douglas Brinkley in his history of Carter since 1980 called The Unfinished Presidency, a Clinton Cabinet member referred to Jimmy Carter as a “treasonous prick.”

 

Jimmy Carter has won the Nobel Prize he lobbied for, so the only prize left he has to fight for is his place in the history books. Perhaps he wants fellow Leftists to win the ongoing historical struggle so that his history will be written favorably. This may be why Mr. Carter obsessively scapegoats Israel and undermines America.

 

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Mr. Ponte co-hosts a national radio talk show Monday through Friday 6-8 PM Eastern Time (3-5 PM Pacific Time) on the Genesis Communications Network. Internet Audio worldwide is at GCNlive .com. The show's live call-in number is 1-800-259-9231. A professional speaker, he is a former Roving Editor for Reader's Digest.


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