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Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:55PM
Interview with Webster Griffin Tarpley, author and historian

Interview with Webster Griffin Tarpley, author and historian

It is very much a speech designed to get him (Obama) reelected and not a serious foreign policy speech, although it has dangerous elements of foreign policy in it.”
President of the United States has focused on the Middle East region for his UN speech, talking about Syria, Iran and the wrath of the Muslim World towards the anti-Islam movie made in the US. Press TV has conducted an interview with Webster Griffin Tarpley, author and historian from Washington, regarding the issue. What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview. Press TV: I would just like to mention the comments made both on Iran and also the comments made on the anti-Islam video; the two important parts of his speech. When he refers to that video, he says that the proper response now is for all leaders to stop extremism and violence. First of all, how did you analyze his approach towards this issue? Tarpley: Well, this was a speech that was dictated by Obama’s presidential campaign. It is not really an international policy speech. It is more like an American stop-speech on the hustings in a campaign. As you said, it starts with these anecdotes; it tells you the story of Chris Stevens (US Ambassador to Libya who was killed on September 11, 2012, when the US consulate was attacked in Benghazi); it tells you the story of [Mohammad] Bu Azizi (a Tunisian street vendor who set himself on fire on December 17, 2010) and then it proceeds through a series of platitudes remarkable for what it does not have. There is nothing about the crisis of the Euro [currency], nothing about the world financial and economic depression; there is nothing about tensions with Russia, about anti-ballistic missile system, nothing about China and Japan, nothing about Latin America. They are all completely focused on the Middle East because those are the areas that have come up in the US presidential campaign. The ones that I would point to, first of all, Stevens, as you say, with Libya, it is the Romney campaign that created this video through the so-called Islamophobia network and he has been hurt by this in the sense that his campaign members on foreign policy have gone down as a result of the riots and so forth that have occurred and the assassination of Ambassador Stevens; so he had to address that. Secondly, Netanyahu, a great friend of Romney, his bosom buddy since 1976, has been intervening in the US campaign really shamelessly and trying to get Romney elected and the Republicans generally say Obama is meeting with..., he goes on a television program here called ‘The view’ with some women who sit around and talk but he won’t meet with Netanyahu and this is a scandal. So he has got to protect himself on the side of Israel and also he has got to make some threats against Iran because he is accused of being soft by Romney and indeed Netanyahu. The third point is a little bit vaguer but it is important too. The reactionaries here in the US say that Obama denies ‘American Exceptionalism’ and this is a theory that the United States is totally unique, not subjected to the same historical laws as anybody else, really, totally out of the world. And you could hear some of this rhetoric, this sort of messianic utopian stuff, about the mission of the United States; this was an attempt to cover himself on that. Otherwise, I was impressed; he has got a Manichean worldview, right? He says, on the one side, there is democracy and on the other side, there is extremism and in the middle of that he is Mr. Color revolution. He is the great destabilize; he is the manager or the administrator of the world and he says we supported, the US supported, the destabilization in Tunisia and one quotation that I thought was quite revealing. He said, “We insisted on change in Egypt” and I believe that is true. It was the US Embassy that demanded the final ouster of Mubarak. So then, he comes through Yemen and as you say, very blatant on Syria, right? Outrageous! This entire summit was supposed to be based on the rule of law and here is the president of the United States saying, “I demand the complete overthrow of the Syrian government”, based on nothing, not even [based] on the UN Security Council because they have voted it down. So it is very much a speech designed to get him reelected and not a serious foreign policy speech, although it has dangerous elements of foreign policy in it. MY/MSK/JR
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