Two good articles about the latest happenings in the crazy middle east:
Middle East Madness: We need to understand the real source of Islamist rage
By Victor Davis Hanson
As a candidate and as president, Obama assumed that his own multicultural politics, his familiarity with Islam, his novel transracial personal story, and his repudiation of George W. Bush would all combine to win over the Middle East. Supposedly, Middle Eastern dislike of America had little to do with longstanding existential differences that did not start with Bush and won’t end with Obama.
Obama’s al Arabiya interview, Cairo speech, and loud reset diplomacy sent mixed messages. He gave the impression that Middle East anger was largely either America’s fault or due to misunderstandings that the sensitive Obama alone could mitigate — as he distanced himself from the supposed pathologies of prior American policy in the region.
That myth-making is now discredited. But it still makes it hard for the administration to admit that hatred in Egypt is deep-seated and irrational — and has very little to do with a silly video.
Misunderstanding 9/11: Marking the anniversary of the attacks with exercises in self-deception
By Clifford D. May
“By the end of 2014, the longest war in our history will be over,” President Obama said at a 9/11 memorial service at the Pentagon, referring to his plan to pull troops out of Afghanistan, where the Taliban — allies and hosts of al-Qaeda — has not been defeated.
Is it possible that Mr. Obama still does not understand that Afghanistan, too, is only a battle in the “longest war in our history,” a war that has flared up again in Libya, Egypt, and more than a dozen other Muslim countries? It is a war whose end is not yet in sight, and we cannot predict with confidence, given what we’ve seen and heard in recent days, which side will emerge victorious and which will be vanquished.