Friday, June 19, 2009

ACTION ALERT! Sign the Petition Supporting Obama's Smart Response to the Iranian Election Crisis

From a Just Foreign Policy e-mail alert:

President Obama has faced pressure from some members of Congress and voices in the media to take sides in the dispute in Iran over the recent Presidential election. Senator John McCain said that "[the President] should speak out that this was a corrupt, flawed sham of an election." Senator Lindsey Graham has been reported as saying that the situation in Iran "clearly deserves a more forceful response" from the President.

However, taking sides in Iran's internal election dispute would be dangerously counterproductive. As President Obama said Tuesday, "... it's not productive, given the history of U.S.-Iranian relations, to be seen as meddling -- the U.S. President meddling in Iranian elections." Moreover, any appearance of meddling in Iran's election dispute could undermine the President's commitment to pursue sustained diplomatic engagement with the government of Iran, which he has pledged to continue regardless of the election result.

Would you tell President Obama that you support his cautious response by signing our petition below?

Contrary to the popular argument, it is unlikely that taking the side of the opposition would be helpful to the demonstrators. The Iranian government is already attempting to tie the political unrest in Iran to Western influences. Given our countries' fraught history, taking the side of the opposition would most likely not serve the interests of the Iranian people, but would instead be used by hard-liners in Iran to paint the demonstrators as American proxies.

As Senator Richard Lugar wisely stated Tuesday, "When popular revolutions occur, they come really from the people. They are generated from people power within the country. For us to become heavily involved in the election at this point is to give the clergy an opportunity to have an enemy and to use us, really, to retain their power."

You can encourage President Obama to continue his careful assessment of Iran by following the link below:

Thank you for all you do for a just foreign policy,

Megan Iorio
Just Foreign Policy

I've actually been shocked by how well Obama and Clinton have handled the Iranian crisis. They've shown really smart restraint and diplomatic ability. We need to fight back against the right's attacks and support them -- and by extension, the Iranians -- by demanding that the US stay as far away from interfering in the election as possible, so that hard-liners in Iran can't say that the demonstrators are simply US stooges. The more homegrown their movement is, the better.