"How did it come to pass that an opposition's measure of a president's foreign policy was all or nothing, success or "failure"? The answer is that the political absolutism now normal in Washington arrived at the moment--Nov. 7, 2000--that our politics subordinated even a war against terror to seizing the office of the presidency." - Daniel Henninger - WSJ 11/18/05
"the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts." - George Orwell

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Mr. Ahmadinejad's Neighborhood

Likely, anyone that cares has already read Bernard Goldberg's opinion piece at OpinionJournal. However, in the spirit of sharing and opening eyes to astute observations, those who haven't read it should and here in is in part.

From OpinionJournal.com:

An old line that used to make the rounds at CBS News held that the last thing the CEO of a major corporation wanted to hear was "Mike Wallace on line one."

Anyone who has ever seen my former colleague in action gets the joke immediately. But I'm guessing that Ayatollah Khomeini didn't watch "60 Minutes" very often back when he was leading the Iranian Revolution and holding Americans hostage. I'm also guessing he didn't know Mike Wallace from Kate Smith.

Big mistake. The ayatollah was no match for Mike when they sat down in 1979. It was like Muhammad Ali going up against some old, washed up guy in the gym. Mike understood television. The ayatollah was living in the seventh century; he didn't get any of it. So Mike did what he does best. He calmly, gently and most of all politely hit Khomeini with a shot he never saw coming. "Imam," Mike said, "President Sadat of Egypt says what you are doing is, quote, 'a disgrace to Islam.' And he calls you, Imam--forgive me, his words, not mine--'a lunatic.' "

Who remembers the answer? And who cares? This was Mike at his best, taking on a world leader and challenging his credentials--in this case his very sanity. But as they say, that was then and this is now. Two nights ago Mike went up against another Iranian leader, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Mike was good. He asked lots of tough questions. But President Ahmadinejad was no patsy. He lives in the present. He's smart. And more important, he's television savvy. He understands the media at least as well as Mike does.



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