The American people are proud – proud of our country and our accomplishments. We don’t do humiliated well.
The last president to learn that lesson was Jimmy Carter. Jimmy Carter was that rare bird -- a one-term president – mainly because he made the United States look weak on the world stage.
He cozied up to North Korea, sending hundred of millions of dollars in aid to the outlier nation, which nonetheless continued to pursue its nuclear ambitions.
He was mocked by Russia, despite memorably exchanging a kiss with Communist leader Leonid Breshnev to celebrate the signing of the Salt II treaty. The Russians celebrated on their own by invading Afghanistan a mere six months later.
Where his “love your enemies” program really came unglued, of course, was in Iran. After lecturing the Shah – a long-time ally of the U.S. – on human rights and pressing him to release thousands of dangerous dissidents, he allowed the takeover of Iran by Islamic extremists, who promptly took our embassy staff hostage. In one of the most humiliating chapters in our history, Carter’s administration was unable to secure the release of the hostages. A bungled rescue attempt was the last straw. Americans veritably raced to the polls to elect Ronald Reagan president.
Is any of this sounding familiar? It should. Like Carter, President Obama arrived in Washington naively convinced that he could woo the despots of the world by dint of his winning personality. In North Korea, in Iran, we continue to pander to tyrants who delight in embarrassing us
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