Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Jimmy Carter in LA Times...

Thanks to a poster at DailyKos for this link to an op-ed by Jimmy Carter on the state of the US.

Another disturbing realization is that, unlike during other times of national crisis, the burden of conflict is now concentrated exclusively on the few heroic men and women sent back repeatedly to fight in the quagmire of Iraq. The rest of our nation has not been asked to make any sacrifice, and every effort has been made to conceal or minimize public awareness of casualties.

Instead of cherishing our role as the great champion of human rights, we now find civil liberties and personal privacy grossly violated under some extreme provisions of the Patriot Act.

Of even greater concern is that the U.S. has repudiated the Geneva accords and espoused the use of torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay, and secretly through proxy regimes elsewhere with the so-called extraordinary rendition program. It is embarrassing to see the president and vice president insisting that the CIA should be free to perpetrate "cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment" on people in U.S. custody.

Instead of reducing America's reliance on nuclear weapons and their further proliferation, we have insisted on our right (and that of others) to retain our arsenals, expand them, and therefore abrogate or derogate almost all nuclear arms control agreements negotiated during the last 50 years. We have now become a prime culprit in global nuclear proliferation. America also has abandoned the prohibition of "first use" of nuclear weapons against nonnuclear nations, and is contemplating the previously condemned deployment of weapons in space.

Carter may not have been our best President -- though he certainly beats anything we've had since his day, except perhaps Clinton -- but he was certainly the best human being to be President.


Anonymous said...

Clyde Said:

Here is Carter in some NPR interviews. I think he expresses his views very well:

Michael Turton said...

Thanks, Clyde.

Mike said...

Jimmy Carter is a nice guy who does well allying himself with just causes that he believes in. I appreciate his strengths. Being President was obviously not one of them.

And the interview that Clyde refers to admits that Carter, "struggled unsuccessfully to resolve the Iran hostage crisis, in which 55 people were seized along with the U.S. embassy in Tehran." That is true he did struggle with that .... for 444 days, but the interview did not mention that. And while he struggled for those 444 days, he did nothing.

Thank goodness that the Canadian government was able to come up with a plan to rescue those American hostages, and it only took them 444 days.

To suggest that Carter "may not" have been the best President, is, I think, more than generous and charitable. But then again nobody is asking my opinion.

I can think of four really good Presidents since Carter. Carter had his opportunity as President, to make a difference but somehow never was able to. I do have a great deal of respect for him as a humanitarian. To suggest that there hasn't been a good President since him, except for the Democratic president, is I believe, not only inaccurate but blatantly unfair.