Ambassador Christopher Stevens

Theodore Roosevelt Became President On This Day In 1901: Transformation Of The American Presidency!

On this day in 1901, the first year of the 20th century, Theodore Roosevelt became President of the United States upon the death of President William McKinley, who died of gunshot wounds suffered eight days earlier in Buffalo, New York, perpetrated by the assassin, Leon Czolgosz!

TR becoming President turned out to be transformational, as he became an advocate of an activist Presidency, and became a model for both Republican Presidents and Democratic Presidents of the future!

TR helped to make America a world power, and would be shocked at the thought of many today who would advocate withdrawing from the world.

TR would be proud of President Barack Obama in his handling of the Middle East crisis that emerged this week with the death of Christopher Stevens, the US Ambassador to Libya, and would be shocked at the reaction of his fellow Republican, Presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

Also, TR would be proud of Barack Obama for accomplishing what he first brought up as an issue a century ago–national health care for all—and would be disappointed that his party has set out to repeal “ObamaCare”!

It is clear that TR, were he alive today, would be a Democrat, not a Republican, as TR’s Progressive beliefs have been repudiated by right wing conservatives, and TR would be furious at social conservatives trying to control the American people’s private lives, and promoting religion in government, rather than the tradition of the Founding Fathers, to have separation of church and state!

And TR, were he here now, would love to punch Glenn Beck and other right wing extremists who have attacked him because he was a Progressive, who believed that government was designed to make life better for the people, not for the corporations and the wealthy!

Yes, TR had his faults, as we all do, but he stands out as one of our greatest Presidents, who might never have ascended to that job, but for the evil deed of one man, who murdered William McKinley.

Just the same, Barack Obama will not let a small band of terrorists and thugs in Libya to upend our foreign policy, and he will show resolve and principle in dealing with the issue, just as TR always did in the Presidency!

Barack Obama is a worthy successor to the heritage of Theodore Roosevelt!

Jon Huntsman: A Rare, Sane Voice Among Today’s Republicans In Foreign Policy!

Sane Republicans, the small number that seem to exist these days, should mourn that Jon Huntsman, the former Utah Governor and Ambassador to China, who was the only legitimate GOP candidate for President this year, before his withdrawal in January, was one of the few of that party to express the proper thoughts on the Middle East situation that blew up this week, with the death of the US Ambassador to Libya.

Huntsman said this is not the time for someone to be impetuous, to be reacting without all of the facts, or to suggest that foreign aid should be cut, or that we should withdraw from the region of the Middle East altogether!

This was Huntsman’s reaction to Mitt Romney’s impetuosity; to Bill Bennett’s justifying that impetuosity; and to Kentucky Senator Rand Paul’s call for a cut in foreign aid and withdrawal from involvement in the controversial area of the Middle East—all signs of just how nuts much of the Republican Party has become!

There are Republicans who are silently, and quietly, whispering privately how crazy the Romney campaign has become, and all that they hear is that Romney and Paul Ryan are accusing the Barack Obama Administration of sympathizing with terrorists and the thugs that attacked the Libyan Consulate and killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three others!

The incompetence and recklessness of both Romney and Ryan is literally terrifying, politicizing a national tragedy! And when the former Secretary of Education under George H. W. Bush (Bill Bennett) can double down on what Romney said after the first reports of the attack, and Rand Paul and other crazies can talk about losing all influence in the Middle East by punishing nations for the actions of a few, and even advocate total withdrawal and isolating ourselves, it makes one quiver at the thought of a Republican in the White House!

And when aides to Romney say that if he was in the White House, what happened this week in the Middle East would not have happened, one has to shake his head in disbelief, as if a President or anyone can control what goes on in other nations and prevent mobs or hoodlums from taking action, simply by the image of his presence! How egotistical and arrogant can someone get in the pursuit of becoming President, that his aides have the gall to state such an imbecilic assertion!

This is not the sanity of George H. W. Bush and his foreign policy advisers, or even the statesmanship of Condoleezza Rice or Colin Powell!

This is the insanity of people who have no respect for foreign countries, no knowledge of the world, and no understanding of what the use of language can do in relations among nations!

How far the Republican Party has fallen, from an image of being expert in foreign policy, to one of total irresponsibility and looniness, and in so doing, giving the Democratic Party and Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton the distinction of being the grown ups in the room!

Mitt Romney has dug a hole for himself that he will be unable to dig himself out of at the last Presidential debate on October 22, devoted solely to foreign policy. We will see the final disintegration of his candidacy on that evening, just 15 days before the election!

The Dangers Of Islamophobia On American Life And The Future

Islamophobia has multiplied due to irresponsible right wing talk shows hosts, politicians, and websites that are exploiting the murder of Ambassador Christopher Stevens in Libya.

Sadly, Mitt Romney is adding to this hysteria by refusing to make it clear that America cannot declare war on the Islamic world, with its more than one billion population. He needs to calm the hysteria, but instead is contributing to it!

It is right that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton denounce the anti Muslim video that has caused demonstrations in the Middle East, and led to massive riots. We as a nation are not responsible for the reckless, divisive, hateful actions of right wing nuts and Christian and Jewish zealots who preach undying antagonism toward the entire Islamic world.

The reality is that we MUST coexist in this world, as a modern day Crusade would destroy this planet that seven billion people occupy!

And if we are not careful, we will have massive violence in this nation against our Muslim population, and massive retaliation by people out to defend their faith and their culture. The Muslim population overwhelmingly has denounced what happened in Libya and Egypt, and are trying to go about their lives and be good American citizens.

Just because there are some radicals does not mean that all Muslims should be painted with the same brush. Leave it to the FBI and CIA to handle that problem, as they have done very well so far!

Indeed, we need to keep watch over our own religious extremists who are willing to be outrageous in their behavior in the name of freedom of speech and freedom of religion, and do not care how they divide this nation, and put it under stress and danger, and undermine our national security!

The Sacrifices And Commitment Of Our Foreign Policy Professionals Very Much Underappreciated!

Most Americans have no clue as to what life is like in other nations around the world, particularly in the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Many of our politicians promote the concept that America is the only nation that matters, and even ridicule, as former Vice President Dick Cheney said, “old Europe”!

This narrow mindedness and isolationist attitude, with only a thought of using military force overseas to impose our will and our values, is extremely dangerous in the modern world, and it causes most Americans to have no understanding of the sacrifices and commitment of our foreign policy professionals all over the world, who often put themselves in harm’s way to help promote understanding and open mindedness, and promote dialogue in the nations they serve, so as to make for a more cooperative and united world.

These diplomatic personnel are not compensated properly, and are underappreciated by ignorant citizens and politicians who wish to use the outside world as a whipping boy for their own prejudices and bigotry toward people and cultures which are different, whether in their religion, nationality, ethnicity, skin color, or customs.

Today is a day we should all pause and honor the memory of Christopher Stevens, a dedicated public servant who did his best to represent us in a nation in turmoil, Libya, and died, along with three others, doing what was necessary and right to do. May he and the others killed rest in peace, and be thanked by the American people for their selfless commitment to mankind!