Whew. Condi had me going there for a second. I thought she believed there was something wrong with all those people in the Middle East who aren’t taking a shine to our prescriptions for how they should govern themselves and live their lives. But now that I know she really believes there’s nothing wrong with them, I feel totally reassured:
Nearly a year after she was ridiculed for calling a war in Lebanon ”the birth pangs of a new Middle East,” Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is insisting democracy will come to the region whatever the setbacks…
”Democracy is hard, and I see it as especially hard when there are determined enemies who try and strangle it,’
Yes, indeed. Like those pesky folks trying to strangle Palestinian democracy in its cradle by suffocating Gaza after Hamas won the last election there. Oh, you say–that was us doing the strangling? But, how’s that possible? We support democracy in the Middle East. Condi says so.
Questioned by Western and Arab reporters Sunday, Rice gave a forceful defense of the principle behind the words [“birth pangs of democracy”] — that violence and hardship may be necessary to achieve freedom, and that the forces of moderation and democracy will win out against what Rice calls extremists.
Violence and fratricide have followed each of three U.S.-backed elections in the Middle East in the past three years — in Iraq, Lebanon and the Palestinian territories.
”Yeah, it’s really hard. It’s hard for democracy to take hold in a place where it has not taken hold before, but I am confident about the triumph of these values because I’ve seen it before,” Rice said.
”There is nothing wrong with the people of the Middle East,” she added. ”They can triumph and triumph democratically.”
It’s SO important for “the people of the Middle East” to get this sort of Oprah-esque validation from Condi. Otherwise–well–they really might think there WAS something wrong with them.
But seriously, somebody please tell Condi that Hamas DID “triumph and triumph democratically.” But it wasn’t the “right kind” of democrat. They were those pesky terrorist democrats who don’t really count. You see, there’s good democrats like Nuri al-Maliki (well, good some of the time–like when he does our bidding) and bad ones (like Hamas or Hugo Chavez). Mahmoud Abbas is another one of those “good democrats” except for the little problem that he’s utterly ineffectual, ran virtually unopposed in the election that brought him to power, and “leads” an entirely discredited and dysfunctional political movement, Fatah. I tell you, under Condi’s tutelage the Middle East should be a thriving democracy in, oh, another 2,000 years or so.