On what has become a holy day in the United States of America, this 11th anniversary of 9/11/01 has seen a dizzying array of events in the political sphere that expose latent truths about who our leaders are.
First, the candidates’ tweets were a study in contrasts this morning:
Later in the day, on the other side of the world, a protest broke out in Cairo, Egypt over a film. Radicals (by definition) stormed the US Embassy, spray-painted the walls with grafitti, and ripped down the American flag.
The US Embassy in Cairo immediately issued a press release condemning…wait for it…the filmmakers for the “hurt feelings” their free speech caused. Seriously. That happened:
U.S. Embassy Condemns Religious Incitement
September 11, 2012
The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims – as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.
Not to be outdone by its own State Department, the White House rejected Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s request for a meeting with President Obama while Bibi is in New York at the UN in two weeks. The White House cited an innocent “scheduling conflict” that prevented the two from meeting, and Secretary Clinton will attend instead. But Netanyahu in his request made clear that, despite his short 2.5 day visit to the country, he would be willing to fly down to Washington, DC if it would facilitate the meeting.
And in a final, classy coup de grâce, the Obama campaign violated the political “cease-fire” agreement between the two Presidential campaigns on 9/11 with a Florida rally by impeached former President Clinton on behalf of the Obama campaign.
I don’t know about you, but I think we’ve had just about enough “smart” diplomacy. It’s high time we had some strong diplomacy again.
UPDATE: Apparently the film protests have spread from Egypt to Libya, where now one American employee of the US Consulate there has been killed by the violent, gun-wielding, arsonist mob. This is an outrage and should be condemned in the strongest terms. But I’m sure the State Department will issue another apology instead.