No offense to the classic movie thriller, “Friday the 13th ” but heees baaack! Yes, James Earl “Jimmy” Carter is, once again, sticking his nose and misguided views into international relations and continues, further complicating American policy in the world’s most dangerous regions. As Yogi Berra said “it’s déjà vu all over again.” Carter and his massive ego arrived in the capital of Pyongyang (he must account for half of their tourism) to “try” and get an audience with Kim Jong Il, the despot who poses as the beloved leader of a prison camp posing as a country.
He is a menace to world peace and by that we mean Mr. Carter and not Kim Jong Il. Let us review recent events. In the last year, North Korea has without provocation sunk a South Korean vessel (the Cheonan) killing many South Korean sailors and, then, for an encore, lobbed live artillery at the South Korean island, Yeonpyeonq, killing civilians. It is bad enough that the feckless United Nations can’t muster the wherewithal to apply any kind of meaningful sanctions against North Korea, let alone expel them from that World body, but our own ex‑president, Neville Chamberlin style, is rewarding the North Koreans with a visit which the Koreans interpret as carrying a presidential imprimatur.
According to news reports, Mr. Carter hopes to get six party negotiations restarted. But wait — didn’t the same parties reach an agreement just a few years ago for North Korea, in exchange for massive food aid, to dismantle a nuclear plutonium plant only to have Kim rebuild it once the food was delivered . . . and for an extra bonus for the other participants who seem to show no embarrassment at being taken, once again, for fools, the rogue regime threw in another nuclear bomb test. It isn’t as if our State Department or the White House didn’t know what a rogue this man is. Private citizen Carter once before announced a treaty with North Korea without the permission of the Clinton administration.
Here is how the scam works. First the Koreans pocket billions of dollars in food aid for their starving population, only to have most of the food siphoned off to support Kim’s military forces. Does it not occur to our egotistical, stubborn and trouble-making ex‑president that every dollar we provide in humanitarian aid is a dollar the North Koreans need not spend to feed their populace, thereby making more of their precious foreign hard currency reserves available to spend on their nuclear program.
What will be different this time? Here’s our prediction. Mr. Carter will flash his signature grin and announce, like the British Prime Minister mentioned above, whose name is synonymous with appeasing despots, that he has achieved “peace in our time.” When one can’t comprehend the adage “fool me once, shame on you, but fool me twice shame on me,” he is probably destined never to be taken seriously.
But let us not be one sided and ignore Mr. Carter’s significant achievements.
As president he gave a pass to Vietnam draft dodgers; he dealt with gas lines and saved energy by sitting in front of the White House fireplace wearing a cardigan and announcing that he was turning the thermostat down to 68 degrees and also forming a new federal behemoth, the $26 billion (2011 budget) Department of Energy that is responsible for energy efficiency and domestic energy production, including alterative energy and nuclear energy (we’ll leave it to the reader to grade our progress in these areas) ; he gave away the American-built-and-financed Panama Canal; and in his final act of accomplishment he stood by helplessly while 78 U.S. diplomats were taken prisoner by Iranian thugs for 444 days. His principal strategy was to adopt the lyrics of a popular song of 1979 and encourage Americans to hang yellow ribbons around old oak trees, no doubt suggested to him by that dynamic diplomatic duo, Tony Orlando and Dawn. He officially exited the U.S. presidential stage January 20, 1981, leaving behind the worst inflation and slowest growth in 50 years, but his legacy was nowhere near finished.
This man keeps parachuting himself into delicate diplomatic matters and, to paraphrase Emperor Hirohito after the second atomic bomb was dropped in Nagasaki “not necessarily to the advantage of the nation.”
Perhaps his main mischief is in the Middle East where he describes the Israelis in language worse than he uses for the North Koreans. He has been a frequent critic of Israel’s policies in Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza. He turns a blind eye to Israel’s unilateral withdrawal from Gaza and is silent about the daily bombardment of missiles from Gaza into Israel proper. He refers to Israel’s policy as “apartheid” a word so odious that it is either deliberate misinformation or just plain ignorance that Carter cannot distinguish between Israel and South Africa in the pre-Mandela days. In fact in his book, Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, Carter stated that Israeli control and corruption of Palestinian land are the main obstacles to a cooperative peace in the Holy Land. Not rejectionist Hamas, not Hezbollah, not Bashar al-Assad, not Iran, not continued acts of war by Arabs and Islamic terrorists . . . no Mr. Carter blames Israel.
Online Wikipedia summarizes as follows:
In 2006, at the UK Hay Festival, Carter stated that Israel has at least 150 nuclear weapons. He expressed his support for Israel as a country, but criticized its domestic and foreign policy; “One of the greatest human rights crimes on earth is the starvation and imprisonment of 1.6m Palestinians,” said Carter.
He mentioned statistics showing that the nutritional intake of some Palestinian children was below that of the children of Sub‑Saharan Africa and described the European position on Israel as “supine.” And why are they without an economy that can feed its people? It is not their own failure to seriously pursue peace and build such an economy? In April 2008, the London‑based Arabic newspaper Al‑Hayat reported that:
Carter met with exiled Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal on his visit to Syria. The Carter Center initially did not confirm nor deny the story. The U.S. State Department considers Hamas a terrorist organization. Within this Mid‑East trip, Carter also laid a wreath on the grave of Yasser Arafat in Ramallah on April 14, 2008.
Mr. Carter loves to bask in his efforts to free innocent Americans illegally kidnapped by North Korea or other states hostile to the United States, lavishly praising their humanitarianism when they finally release these totally innocent people, but he hasn’t lifted a finger to free Israeli Corporal Gilad Shalit kidnapped in 2006 by Hamas from Israeli territory.
Mr. Carter has also endorsed the integrity of Venezuelan presidential elections despite overwhelming evidence of fraud. Moreover, in 2009 he endorsed the notion that the 2002 Venezuelan coup was inspired by the United States.
In short, Mr. Carter can’t stop meddling in and criticizing U.S. foreign policy. When he was president he was as ineffective a leader as we have seen since President James Buchanan. After his presidency he has traveled the globe lavishing praise on leftist dictators and heaping scorn on the US and our allies. No one put it better than a blog published under the name davidstuff.com in an article entitled “Jimmy Carter Narcissistic and Clueless” when it stated:
Carter’s penchant for human rights abuses displays ponderous selective indignation. Should there be abuses in South Africa, Chile, Britain, Brazil or Spain, Carter will tell you, and anyone else who will listen, all about it. However, should there be abuses in Communist Cuba, Communist China, Communist Ethiopia, Communist North Korea, Communist Nicaragua, or in tyrannically oppressed Palestine, Syria, Haiti, Libya, Iraq, Iran, you will hear only about the progress, fairness, freedoms and benefits of these regimes, who all happen to be victims of capitalistic oppressors.
Mr. Carter, as they say about some athletes, “peaked early.” He should have remained on the farm.