Rich Galen

President Barack Obama wanted to "reset" America's foreign policy following eight years of President George W. Bush pushing against the bad guys.

In March, President Obama released a video which was a greeting to the Iranian people on the occasion of the Persian new year. The Washington Post described the video as "offering a 'new beginning' in a tone that differed sharply from the anti-Iran rhetoric of his predecessor …"

The Post story went on to say that the Iranian government didn't think much of it because Obama didn't talk directly to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. An official was quoted as saying, "Statesmen address each other, instead of talking to the people."

It is just possible that the anti-Ahmadinejad forces in Iran misread the words they heard from Mr. Obama. It is just possible that they interpreted them as a signal to step up their public opposition to the government of Iran.

It is possible that the backers of opposition leader Mirhossein Mousavi talked themselves into believing that, because President Obama had spoken directly to them - and not to Ahmadinejad - that he was tacitly promising to support them.

Not happening.

President Obama does not have the background or experience to deal with the barrage of foreign policy problems which appear to be confusing the White House.

In April, when Obama met with Latin American leaders, Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Eugene Robinson - not known as a supporter of Conservative causes - wrote:

Chávez can be charming. But when Obama shook the man's hand, he should have telegraphed clearly, through posture, expression and language, that he was not amused. Chávez's gift of the book was meant to affront, not to enlighten, and I would have advised Obama to reciprocate in kind.

The Voice of America, an arm of the State Department, published a piece last night saying:

U.S. President Barack Obama has urged Iran's government to "stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people." He called on Iran to "govern through consent, not coercion."

That's the good news. The bad new is that the VoA pointed out with pride that those words represented "his strongest response to Iran's post-election unrest."

The Iranian government is not likely to worry much about strong statements like that. In the Reuters report which hit the wires last night, this warning to readers was at the top:

EDITORS' NOTE: Reuters and other foreign media are subject to Iranian restrictions on their ability to report, film or take pictures in Tehran.

Time Magazine reporter, Howard Chua-Eoan, wrote that the world is reduced to getting the Iranian story from snippets

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at