As I read the reports of Iran’s new “moderate” president, I’m reminded that Yogi Berra once said, “It’s déjà vu all over again.” During my father’s first term, Yuri Andropov left his job as head of the KGB and moved up to become general secretary of the Communist Party and ruler of the Soviet Union.
Andropov, during his time at the KGB, planned the 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia and cracked down on dissidents inside the Soviet Union. Yet when he moved into Russia’s top spot he underwent a total makeover. Our Pollyanna press began writing that Andropov “collects abstract art, likes jazz . . . and dances the tango gracefully.”
He was no longer a KGB thug. Instead Andropov was just a regular guy who made an unfortunate career choice. But now that he runs the show, his inner bon vivant is free to flower. These media makeovers are common in a liberal media that suffers from self-induced brainwashing and always manages to find fault in any conflict with the U.S. and not the opposition.
Edward Jay Epstein characterized these reports as “worthy of Saturday Night Live: the head of the KGB as one wild and crazy guy. After a hard day at the office repressing dissent, Brezhnev's heir spends the evening at home, telling anti-regime jokes in fluent English and playing jazz for dissidents.”
Fortunately, my father chose not to be Andropov’s tango partner. The Reagan administration continued to confront the Soviet Union until it imploded and we won the Cold War.
But one doesn’t have to be head of a global evil empire for our media to apply a makeover. When Bashar al-Assad took control of Syria in 2000 after his father, Hafez died, U.S. media pronounced him a “moderate.” Diane Sawyer proclaimed that, “Bashar Assad is ready to work with the United States.” One civil war and 100,000 dead Syrians later, the mainstream media says, “Never mind.”
That was then and this might as well be then.
Iran has just had an election and the cartoonish Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been replaced as president by the (guess what?) “moderate” Hassan Rohani! The fact that Rohani is a Muslim cleric who played an important role in the revolt that turned Iran into an Islamic terror-supporting state has completely escaped the notice of the media.
To them he’s Thomas Jefferson with a tea towel on his head.
(And speaking of tea, why is it the media can always find “moderate” members of the Taliban or Muslim Brotherhood, but can never seem to locate a “moderate” tea party member of whom it can approve?)
As a result the State Department — even after the departure of Hillary "The Hero of Benghazi" Clinton — is ready to resume negotiations on the Iranian nuclear program. Or as The Wall Street Journalreports, diplomats “intend to aggressively push to resume negotiations with Tehran on its nuclear program by August to test his new government's positions.”
As former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton says, only dupes would believe that Rohani is any kind of moderate whatsoever. The dreamers at the State Department have not been able to see the obvious: Negotiations are a crucial component of Iran’s drive to build a nuclear bomb. Ten years of “negotiations” have stalled the U.S. until the time when the “moderate” mullahs have the bomb is just around the corner.
Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan. He is the president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Read more reports from Michael Reagan — Click Here Now.