Obama's Weak-Tea Statement on Iran

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Elliott Abrams has a point here:

President Obama's reaction to the looting of the Embassy is pathetically weak. He said today that "for rioters, essentially, to be able to overrun the embassy and set it on fire is an indication that the Iranian government is not taking its international obligations seriously."

Not taking its international obligations seriously? A regime that is the greatest state sponsor of terrorism in the world?  That continues to defy UN Security Council and IAEA resolution after resolution? That supplied IEDs to kill countless Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan?
If that is the strongest language he can muster, President Obama is not taking his own obligations seriously.  After all, we are but weeks from the Iranian effort to kill the Saudi ambassador in Washington--for which the regime paid absolutely no price. His mild response suggests they will likewise pay no price--or at least none involving the United States--for this latest abuse. The ayatollahs must wonder why anyone seriously expects them to abandon their nuclear program when they appear free to kill Americans, undertake terrorist plots in our capital, and now--in a striking reminder of how they entered the scene, with the 1979 hostage crisis at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran--attack embassies without evoking anything from Washington.

On the other hand, I think, unlike Elliott, that Obama is tougher than his words suggest. I hope for America's sake I'm right, especially vis-a-vis Iran. 

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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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