[Guest post by DRJ]
Hundreds of thousands of Iranians have demonstrated for days in response to Iran’s June 12 election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The election has been tainted by allegations of massive fraud. In response, German Chancellor Merkel immediately expressed concerns, French President Sarkozy denounced the election results, and today the Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs agreed.
In contrast, Barack Obama has carefully avoided any appearance of taking sides because he did not want to be seen as “meddling.” He also said:
“The difference between Ahmadinejad and Mousavi in terms of their actual policies may not be as great as has been advertised,” he told CNBC.
“Either way we are going to be dealing with an Iranian regime that has historically been hostile to the United States,” he added.”
What did Obama’s neutral diplomacy gain America? Nothing:
“Iran accused the United States on Wednesday of “intolerable” meddling in its internal affairs, alleging for the first time that Washington has fueled a bitter postelection dispute. Opposition supporters marched in Tehran’s streets for a third straight day to protest the outcome of the balloting.
The Iranian government summoned the Swiss ambassador, who represents U.S. interests in Iran, to complain about American interference, state-run Press TV reported.
The English-language channel quoted the government as calling Western interference “intolerable.”
Yesterday Monday the State Department did ask Twitter to delay a planned upgrade to avoid disrupting Iranian communications and Twitter complied. Anticipating the U.S. might be criticized for that effort, “State Department spokesman Ian Kelly strongly rejected that contacts to Twitter amounted to meddling in Iranian internal affairs.”