Iran: Ten U.S. sailors kneel at gunpoint before Iran's military, then actually apologize, and while held captive, merit no mention in the president's speech to Congress. It's American weakness illustrated.
We don't yet have the full facts on how a U.S. naval vessel was allowed to be seized by the world's foremost terrorist state. But as Desert Storm infantry commander and Clinton drug czar Gen. Barry McCaffrey (ret.) warned in an NBC News interview, "this is an affront to our military presence in the Gulf and will unsettle our allies in the region."
Sticks and stones may break our bones, but images can hurt a global power profoundly. Hubert Van Es' infamous photo of desperate evacuees scrambling toward an Air America Huey helicopter on the roof of a Saigon building, as North Vietnamese surrounded the city, symbolized American impotence in the 1970s.
The Islamic State understands that a picture can be worth a thousand bullets, producing blood-curdling videos of its atrocities. For Iran, images of U.S. sailors kneeling in submission, and video of one apologizing on behalf of the rest — and, by extension, on behalf of the U.S. — are, as the MasterCard commercials put it, "Priceless."
"It was our fault," the sailor said on camera. "And we apologize for our mistake."
What a comparison with the tortured crew of the U.S.S. Pueblo, captured by North Korea in 1968, who during their captivity discreetly extended their middle fingers when posing for propaganda photos. Today, Secretary of State John Kerry says, "I want to express my gratitude to Iranian authorities. ..."Read the rest of this IBD editorial HERE.
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