Deny Ahmadinejad A Visa

Jillian Bandes
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Posted: May 04, 2010 8:25 AM
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dissing the United States at a U.N. conference is kind of like my grandmother dissing the coffee at her retirement home — rather predictable. Unlike my grandmother, however, Ahmadinejad is actively engaged in trying to make nuclear weapons to destroy the United States, and his complaints deserve to be taken a little more seriously. The impetus to take him seriously got even more critical after Ahmadinejad's speech at Monday's U.N. conference was even more intense than usual. There, he called for the "swift reaction" from the U.N. against the United States over our opposition to his nuclear program. That's an active threat against America.

As usual, friendly nations walked out of the meeting hall. And as Greg pointed out, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's speech at the U.N. was a decent start in condemning Ahmadinejad's proposal. But what now? Ahmadinejad has filed for visas for the United States so he can attend a U.N. Non-Proliferation Treaty review conference next week. These visa applications should be denied.

They won't be denied, of course. Pushing this psycho just a little could be disastrous for international relations. But at this point, I'd argue that
Ahmadinejad  has pushed us enough. Ahmadinejad has been found in violation of every international agreement on nuclear proliferation, and the idea of him attending such a conference is a complete joke. Even more ironically, the subject of next week's conference is to figure out how to better sanction Ahmadinejad himself over his future (predictable) noncompliance with international regulations.Yet the State Department is complying with Ahmadinejad's request.

Here's spokesman P.J. Crowley:
You know, any foreign official who’s coming to the U.N. for official business is normally granted a visa...Our focus is, should he come, we want to see him play a constructive role in the upcoming NPT (Non-Proliferation Treaty)… review conference.
Thankfully, Clinton hasn't made time for Ahmadinejad on her schedule. Instead, she'll be discussing how to better sanction Iran after he undoubtedly continues to violate nuclear treaties. But she should take one more step and push the Department to deny Ahmadinejad and his cronies a safe welcome in the county he has just actively threatened. It doesn't matter how far-out or complicated those threats might be. Let's maintain some self-respect.