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2007-05-24

Jimmy Carter: Profile In Incompetence - Look Who's Talking

By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY

Leadership: So Jimmy Carter calls the Bush administration "the worst in history." This from the man who wrecked the world's greatest economy and made a nuclear Iran and North Korea possible.


Profile In Incompetence: First In A Series
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We didn't think we'd see the day when a president-elect of France would be more appreciative of America's role in the world than one of our own former presidents.

But here is Carter telling the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that President Bush's "administration has been the worst in history," one that has "endorsed the concept of pre-emptive war even when our own security is not directly threatened."


Worst President in American history.

Later, Carter called his comments "careless or misinterpreted." But given a chance to retract, he didn't. Apparently the man whose idea of leadership was to sit in front of a fireplace and blame everything on America's "malaise" does not consider Islamofascists turning passenger jets into manned cruise missiles and flying them into skyscrapers a direct threat.

Nor does he consider himself responsible for the chain of events that gave us not only 9/11, but al-Qaida, the Taliban, Hezbollah and a nuclear Iran and North Korea.


Iran


On taking office in 1977, Carter declared that advancing "human rights" was among his highest priorities. America's ally, the Shah of Iran, was one of his first targets, with Carter chastising him for his human rights record and withdrawing America's support.

One of the charges was that the Shah had been torturing about 3,000 prisoners, many of them accused of being Soviet agents. Carter sent a clear message to the Islamic fundamentalists that America would not come to the Shah's aid. His anti-Shah speeches blared from public address systems in downtown Tehran.

The irony, as noted by Steven Hayward of the American Enterprise Institute in his book, "The Real Jimmy Carter," is that the regime of Ayatollah Khomeini "executed more people in its first year in power than the Shah's SAVAK had allegedly killed in the previous 25 years." Khomeini's regime was a human rights nightmare.

When Khomeini, a former Muslim exile in Paris, overthrew the Shah in 1979, he established the first modern Islamic regime, a role model for the Taliban and the jihadists to follow. And when the U.S. embassy was stormed that November and 52 American hostages were held for 444 days, America's lack of resolve was confirmed in the jihadist mind.

The wreckage of Carter's foreign policy was seen in the Iranian desert, where a plan to rescue the hostages, a plan never formally presented to the Joint Chiefs, resulted in the loss of eight aircraft, five airmen and three Marines. The rest, as they say, is history.

Hezbollah

As we have noted, it was the Ayatollah Khomeini who introduced the idea of suicide bombers to the Palestine Liberation Organization and who paid $35,000 to PLO families who would offer up their children as human bombs to kill as many Israelis as possible.

It was Khomeini who would give the world Hezbollah to make war on Israel and destroy the multicultural democracy that was Lebanon. And perhaps Jimmy has forgotten that Hezbollah, which he helped make possible, killed 241 U.S. Marines in their Beirut barracks in 1982.

The Soviet Union, seeing us so willingly abandon a staunch ally, invaded Afghanistan, and it was the resistance to the Soviet invasion that helped give birth to the Taliban. The Iranian revolution led to the Iraq-Iran War that took a million lives and encouraged Hussein to invade Kuwait to strengthen his position.

That led to Operation Desert Storm and bases in Saudi Arabia that fueled Islamist resentment, one of the reasons given by Osama bin Laden for striking at America, the Great Satan. Now we're about to face a nuclear Iran as we are embroiled in a war on terror.

If we'd stuck by the Shah and his successors, the history of the last 25 years in the Middle East and here at home would have been very different. As Hayward observes, the fruits of Carter's Iran disaster are with us still, spawning the rise of radical Islam, terrorism, the Taliban and al-Qaida.

North Korea


When President Clinton first learned of the North Korean nuclear program in 1994, a surgical strike against its Yongbyong reactor might have sufficed to send Pyongyang a message that a nuclear North Korea was unacceptable.

Instead, Clinton allowed Jimmy Carter to engage in some private foreign policy and jet off to the last Stalinist regime on earth to broker a deal whereby North Korea would promise to forgo a nuclear weapons program in exchange for a basket of goodies that included oil, fool and, amazingly, nuclear technology.

Along the way, Carter praised North Korea's mass-murdering dictator as a "vigorous and intelligent man." And of North Korea itself, Carter said of this habitat for inhumanity: "I don't see they are an outlaw nation."


Cold War


Jimmy Carter also once challenged Ronald Reagan's "aggressive" and successful strategy for winning the Cold War. Perhaps he'd like to send one of his Habitat for Humanity crews to rebuild the Berlin Wall brick by tyrannical brick. The fact is that Jimmy Carter could not have done more to damage our national security had he been a hand-picked mole planted in the White House by the KGB.

When Carter left office, the Soviet Union was on the march from Grenada to Afghanistan, control of the strategic Panama Canal had been given away, our military had planes that couldn't fly and ships that couldn't sail for lack of trained crews and spare parts, production of the B-1 strategic bomber had been canceled and our economy was in no shape to resist Soviet expansion.

Jimmy Carter, the man who makes Neville Chamberlain look like Dirty Harry, made his remarks about President Bush while promoting his audiobook series of Bible lessons for children. Jimmy, thou shalt not bear false witness against your president and country. Haven't you done enough damage? If you want to see our worst ex-president, look in the mirror.

Next: How Carter ran the world's greatest economy into the ground.

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