Obama was off to Russia last week, and once again proved the new American foreign policy supports you only if you are some form of totalitarian government. There is little difference between our Russian policy and our Iranian policy, just as there are policy similarities between Honduras and Israel. The Obama State Department supports the anti democratic governments of Russia and Iran and opposes the democratic ones of Israel and Honduras. The new United States policy now at least tacitly comes down on the side of tyranny and terrorism.
Putin is successfully developing a dictatorship with a similar strategy as Chavez. By twisting the constitution he replaced himself with a surrogate, became the prime minister, and will likely retake the presidency in the next election. Instead of siding with the voices of freedom echoing from within and without Russia, Obama chose to sit through a 50 minute lesson by Putin on Russian history and then lauded him as a great leader (much the same as he sat through the communist President of Nicaragua Daniel Ortega's diatribe a couple of months ago at an OAS meeting). Later Obama reinvented the Soviet Union and United States cold war history when speaking to some Russian school children. Somehow he asserted that these two great powers were acting with the same degree of moral justification, and that they jointly saw the dangers of and need to end the cold war. The reality is the Soviet Union had aggressively pursued their vision of world dominance (unlike the United States), and we won the war through our unmatched military build up (even though their predatory behavior has reemerged.)
Obama has this habit of elevating totalitarian states. He did it when drawing a moral equivalence between the Israelis and the Palestinians, between the CIA's help installing the Shah in Iran in the 1950s and the Mullahs today, and he has stated that criminals like Zaleya from Honduras is the legitimate president and owns the moral high ground.
Bush's famous look into Putin's eyes and his read on the character of the man was a terrible mistake. Obama has the read right on Putin. The frightening thing is that Putin and his shredding of whatever democratic reforms Russia has achieved are all OK with him.
Meanwhile... in the Wall Street Journal Alan Dershowitz defended his support for Obama and made excuses for Obama's anti Israel policy. Dershowitz is a Harvard law professor who several years ago gained national attention by successfully appealing the conviction of Claus von Bulow, who had been convicted of murdering his society wife. With this Dershowitz promoted the idea of his own brilliance (a repeating theme), and began to get a stream of high profile cases. Unfortunately for his clients, his only success was von Bulow, and that was because the man almost certainly had been framed. At least the maid and others admitted lying in the first trial, and without their testimony he never would have been convicted. Those who subscribed to and became victims of the Dershowitz myth included Leona Helmsley who went to jail, Mike Tyson who went to jail, Lee Beloff (Phila. City Council member convicted of extortion) who went to jail, and many more.
Jonathan Tobin writes for Commentary Magazine and in one article contested much of Dershowitz's WSJ defense. Although Tobin was correct, I sent him a letter expressing a more simplistic view. It is below.
Your response to Dershowitz dignifies his bogus arguments. Anyone who has watched the left's attitude towards Israel knows that it has always been anti Semitic and anti Israel in much the same was it has always been anti American. To advocate for Obama and argue that he would be anything but anti Israel is suggestive of that now famous "willing suspension of disbelief." Extremists like Wright, Ayers and Alinsky were not accidents, but formative. I realize Dershowitz's expertise is in self promotion, but even he can not be so blind as to believe what he said while selling Obama to American Jews. No, during the campaign he lied so as to shine a spotlight on himself, and now he has crafted idiotic arguments in order to keep it there. The answer is simple. The left always has been and always will be an enemy of Israel, and therefore anyone promoting the left is equally an enemy, including Alan Dershowitz.