By Bonnie Erbe, Thomas Jefferson Street blog.
Has anyone noticed it took an experienced female country leader to get President Obama to take on Iran?
President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel called on Iran's government to halt the violent crackdown on demonstrators and said the Persian Gulf nation must be blocked from gaining a nuclear weapon.
Obama, speaking at a joint news conference with Merkel at the White House, called the Iranian government's response to protests over the June 12 presidential elections "outrageous."
"A government that treats its own citizens with that kind of ruthlessness and violence and that cannot deal with peaceful protesters who are trying to have their voices heard in an equally peaceful way I think has moved outside of universal norms," Obama said.
Merkel said the Iranian people have a right "to have their votes be counted" and to see that the election results are substantiated.
And has anyone else noticed that Secretary of State Clinton has been invisible on the Iranian elections? This week she was allowed to take the courageous step of crushing so-called hot-dog diplomacy.
In a cable sent Wednesday, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton put an end to hot-dog diplomacy. "Unfortunately, circumstances have changed, and participation by Iranian diplomats would not be appropriate in light of the unjust actions that the president and I have condemned," she said. Embassies that had already invited Iranian diplomats were instructed to disinvite them.
Normally, one would think the secretary of state would have been front and center on the stolen Iranian elections, joining the international chorus calling on Iran's theocracy to perform an honest recount of the ballots. Instead, Obama's handlers have relegated her to poltergeist status.
I believe Hillary Clinton made a mistake by joining this administration. She would have been higher profile if she had stayed in the Senate and led the loyal opposition. She would have been reviled by fellow partisans at first, but the president's performance in office would have proven her right over time.