One of President Obama’s core objectives is the humiliation of the United States. Thus his bows to the Saudi king and the Japanese emperor in the first year of his administration. Obama’s bows gave expressive form to the diminished role Obama has crafted for the United States on the world stage. Obama’s spokesmen threw in a healthy dollop of lying about it for domestic consumption thrown in for good measure. And, as Antonio observes in The Tempest, what’s past is prologue.
To borrow the pointed question asked by Elvis Costello, why does he absolutely deny he bowed down? Even Stevie Wonder could see him dive.
In year six of the Obama administration, the new Saudi king isn’t returning the favor. But it’s not just the Saudi king. The Wall Street Journal reports in a page-one story with a triple byline: “Rulers snub Arab summit, clouding US bid for Iran deal” (accessible here via Google). Here is the story’s opening:
Saudi Arabia’s monarch pulled out of a summit to be hosted by President Barack Obama on Thursday, in a blow to the White House’s efforts to build Arab support for a nuclear accord with Iran.
King Salman’s decision appeared to ripple across the Persian Gulf. Bahrain said on Sunday that its ruler, King Hamad bin Isaa Al Khalifa, had opted not to travel to Washington.
The only two monarchs from the six countries confirmed to attend the summit at the White House and the presidential retreat at Camp David, Md., were the emirs of Qatar and Kuwait.
I would quibble with that Journal headline. The prospect of the Iran deal isn’t exactly cloudy per se. There is no abasement Obama will not perform in order to give the Islamic Republic of Iran what it wants to seal a deal. Obama won’t rest until he can kiss the hand of the Supreme Leader in Tehran.
But the arrangement in process may be clouded in this sense. It’s clouded with a (100 percent) chance of nuclear weapons.