Well I hope so. I see no reason to prevent this person from serving as the official representative of Iran. You have to remember that those people who took my hostages back in 1979 were college students, they were young people and I don’t think they should be held culpable for that incident now, 35 years later.
We all did a few crazy things in our youth. There is stuff that’s back there in the past that that a bunch of us would probably prefer just stayed back there. Most of us can get behind letting a few bygones be bygones and getting past the dumb things we did when we were in young and bullet-proof. You may know who your friends are from back then because you can trust them to burn certain photographic evidence.* It’s just that James Earl Carter perhaps takes this whole forgiveness thing a bit past the point of reason.
President Carter refers to the recent decision by the Iranian Theocracy to appoint Hamid Aboutalebi to be Iran’s ambassador to the UN. Aboutalebi was a member of a group of young Iranian revolutionaries who took 52 Americans hostage and held them in vile captivity for 444 days**. I’ll confess to feeling a certain level of envy. The best I could do for college madness was to sing gross party songs and get bombed after the Saturday rugby match. Aboutalebi just takes a flying leap off the bridge. When he jokes around about nailing someone’s shoes to the floor, you might want to discretely inquire as to whether the poor fool’s feet were still inside the footwear.
There probably isn’t too much that the US can do that would suddenly right all wrongs here. We are not bombing Iran next week regardless of how many times they get up and dutifully pray “Death to America” every Friday morning. They are going to appoint someone to the UN who considers The United States “The Great Satan” and will bear us about the same level of bared-teeth enmity as the UN ambassador from North Korea. I mention it in a blog post because it sticks in the craw a bit that they were so insulting in which nut-job they chose and it rankles my sense of justice that Jimmy Carter can offer up forgiveness in the utter absence of contrition.
What I hope this ultimately does is serve notice to the sleep-walking zombies who think America has no real enemies in the world that our policies don’t create. First, people hate us for whom and what we are and would hate us for that simply because of our continued respiration. You are no more able to reason with Jihadists in Iran or the Dialectic Materialists in North Korea than you are a person who habitually handles venomous snakes because of a chapter from the Book of Acts. People will see an open and successful society and seek to rob from it, insult it and destroy it. This is particularly true of societies such as Iran and North Korea who despise both Democracy and Judeo-Christian Morality.
Every day we are alive as a nation is an affront to what much of the world desperately believes. We can’t stop Iran from indulging in crude and insulting diplomatic symbolism, but we can keep the reality of their eternal hatred for all that we are and all that we believe in at the forefront of our minds at any time their hateful diplomatic emissaries darken the doorways at Turtle Bay. We probably have to tolerate what we lack the martial will to violently repay in the currency of burning White Phosphorous. Yet we would be total and utter fools to just forgive and forget. It would only encourage our committed enemies to brutalize our citizenry that much more often.
*-Oh, and also not keep the negatives.
**-In Iran, this still is known as تسخیر لانه جاسوسی امریکا (literally “Conquest of the American Spy Den,”). (HT: Wikipedia)