Does this generation possess the gravitas to lead the world?
Considering the hysteria that greeted the request of Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to lay a wreath at Ground Zero, the answer is no.
What is it about this tiny man that induces such irrationality?
Answer: He is president of a nation that is a "state sponsor of terror," that is seeking nuclear weapons, and is moving munitions to the Taliban and insurgents in Iraq.
But Libya was a "state sponsor of terror," and Col. Khadafi was responsible for Pan Am 103, the Lockerbie massacre of school kids coming home for Christmas. And President Bush secretly negotiated a renewal of relations in return for Khadafi giving up his nuclear program and compensating the families of the victims of that atrocity. Has Ahmadinejad ever committed an act of terror like this?
Richard Nixon went to Moscow and concluded strategic arms agreements while Moscow was the arms supplier of the enemy we were fighting in Vietnam that used, at Hue, mass murder as a war tactic.
Nixon went to Beijing to toast Mao Zedong, the greatest mass murderer in history, responsible for the deaths of 37,000 Americans in Korea, who was, in 1972, persecuting and murdering dissidents in the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution run by his crazed wife, and transshipping Russian weapons into Vietnam.
And Nixon is today hailed as a statesman for having gone there.
In 1959, President Eisenhower rode up Pennsylvania Avenue in an open convertible with Nikita Khrushchev, Stalin's gauleiter in Ukraine, who, three years before his tour of the United States, had sent tanks into Budapest to butcher the patriots of the Hungarian Revolution.
What has Ahmadinejad done to rival these monsters?
It would be an obscenity, we are told, if Ahmadinejad were allowed to place a wreath at Ground Zero. This is a public relations stunt that should never be permitted.
That the Iranian president has PR in mind is undoubtedly true. Much of what national leaders do is symbolic. But that wreath-laying would have said something else, as well.
It would have said that, to Iran, these Americans were victims who deserve to be honored and mourned and, by extension, the men who killed them were murderers. Bin Laden celebrates 9-11. So do all America-haters. By laying a wreath at Ground Zero, the president of Iran would be saying that in the war between al-Qaida and the United States, he and his country side with the United States.
How would we have been hurt by letting him send this message?
To the hysteriacs, Ahmadinejad is the new Hitler and we are all at Munich, and we should behave like Churchill and gird for war.
This is absurd.