Fri, 05 Jun 2009 20:18:13 +0000 – By Ken Blackwell
The Washington Post last year admitted that it had "leaned" toward Barack Obama in the presidential race. That's ridiculous. The Leaning Tower of Pisa leans, but it still stands. The Post and the rest of the liberal media fell over flat for him. Chris Matthews admitted to feeling a tingling going up and down his leg. The rest just wrote like that.
President Obama's Mideast trip has been hailed as a "new beginning." Indeed it is. Obama very pointedly did not visit Jerusalem on this his first trip to the region. Liberal Democrat Harry Truman dared to recognize Israel in 1948 -- minutes after the struggling Jewish state was born -- and minutes before Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the rest of the Arab world tried to strangle the infant in its crib. Republican Richard Nixon -- despised by the liberal media -- saved Israel's life by re-supplying her with arms during the Yom Kippur War in 1973.
The U.S. commitment to Israel has been a constant of both parties -- until now. By demanding a halt to the natural growth of Jewish settlements on the West Bank, Obama is applying a tourniquet to Israel's throat. If she cannot grow, she will die. Which is what Obama's new-found friends have wanted since 1948.
Israelis are grumbling, not surprisingly, asking why Americans who inhabit Iroquois territories should want to choke off Israeli growth. But they know they are heavily dependent on U.S. goodwill.
President Obama looked more than a little uncomfortable in Riyadh as King Abdullah draped a golden chain around his neck. He posed for pictures with the man who rules the most anti-Christian nation on earth. He could not visit a local church because no churches are permitted in Saudi Arabia. No Bibles. No crosses. The only American flag in view was the tiny one Obama has lately taken to wearing on his lapel. The Saudi flag, of course, bears an Arabic inscription: "There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his Messenger." To those who might disagree, the Saudi flag also bears a scimitar to remind all that their heads will be cut off if they even murmur.
Obama allowed himself to be photographed with the bankroller of thousands of militant Wahhabi schools and mosques and "chaplains" even in U.S. prisons. This photo op was a cruel disappointment to millions of Christians in Africa. For centuries, Arab slave traders have descended on the wounded continent. Even today, especially today, African Christians are in danger from Saudi-backed predators. Saudi Arabia abolished slavery only in 1962--one hundred years after the U.S. Emancipation Proclamation. Obama was not permitted to visit Mecca or Medina to see for himself that Saudi Emancipation was real.
By telling the world in his Cairo speech that Iran had the right to develop nuclear power, but only in conformity with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, a treaty the mullahs in Iran have been flouting for a decade, Obama may have put Israel in an untenable position. Will the Europeans now demand tougher sanctions than the ones they are already unable to enforce? Or even agree upon?
Scripture calls on us to "pray for the peace of Jerusalem." Indeed we should. And we should pray as well for the embattled Christians of Africa and the Middle East. Nothing President Obama accomplished on his recent tour can give any comfort to the Christians and Jews. It remains to be seen whether his "outreach to Muslims" will bear any but the bitterest of fruit.
Ken Blackwell is a former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Commission and a senior fellow at the Family Research Council in Washington, D.C.