A substantial issue between President Ahmadinejad and the U.S. government has been the refusal of the U.S., until recently, to allow the Iranian president, a powerful global leader, to speak. Over the past several years I have accused former US President George W. Bush of being insecure and lacking in the confidence even to listen to the words of Ahmadinejad. I still maintain that position toward Bush. When we negotiate, we are not compelled to make deals or concessions, we are merely having discussions. Silence promotes misunderstanding. Bush took the position that by negotiating, we were elevating the status of those with whom we negotiate.
On several occasions, Ahmadinejad was prepared, competent, worldly and knowledgeable to address the United Nations. Bush obstructed. Then, during March of 2007, after long years of being ignored by the west, Ahmadinejad was to speak in defense of Iran's nuclear rights before the United Nations, at a Security Council meeting as the Council discussed a resolution on Iran's nuclear activities, this allowance in spite of the non-negotiation policy. According to State Department spokesman Sean McCormack, "… as host of the United Nations, the United States is obligated to let foreign leaders speak before the world body. We have host country obligations, and we are going to live up those host country obligations."
However, the Iranian presidential visit took an unexpected turn; President Ahmadinejad wasn’t heard after all. The stated reason, that the visas for his party were late in arriving, was unsettling to this observer. We can't help but wonder if there was more to this cancelled meeting with the Security Council than met the eye.
Now the Democratic President Barack Obama is allowing negotiations. The Iranian president is always somewhat enigmatic, but in the speech to the General Assembly last week, he allowed that the September 11 attacks on the United States were the works of a terrorist group supported by the U.S., and that the U.S. took advantage of the situation. I choose to ignore the thought that Ahmadinejad might truly believe that someone in our government “supported” the terrible attacks of September 11, 2001. This would clearly be grounds for a death penalty investigation, and could not have been done without evidence having being produced. If Ahmadinejad has some clandestine knowledge, he is keeping it to himself. President Ahmadinejad, in his speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Thursday, September 23, said the retaliation could have been carried out, with a “logical plan” to avert bloodshed. Nothing could be truer. On May 30, 2006, I wrote that the death and destruction to Iraq could have been avoided. I recalled a time when the Libyan “Superman”, Muammar Kaddafi (or Khadafy), became a threat, we handled the matter swiftly and effectively.