A delegation of Hollywood stars, headed by Annette Bening, is traveling to Iran to open a dialogue on behalf of the Obama administration:
Thirty-eight years ago, a ping pong team sent by US president Richard Nixon to Beijing opened the door to Communist China. February 27, 2009, president Barack Obama launched his bid for dialogue with Iran with an Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences delegation from Hollywood. It is led by the actress Annette Bening, AMPAS president Sid Ganis and his predecessor Frank Pierson who flew in just after the Oscar award ceremony. Visiting in the framework of “US-Iranian culture exchanges,” they will hold talks in Tehran Saturday and Sunday.
While the Hollywood stars are in Iran, I’m sure they will meet with the thousands of opposition political candidates who have been excluded from elections, the students who protested at Tehran University against repression, the homosexuals whose conduct is punishable by death, and the women who risk being stoned to death for adultery.
Hollywood is going to Iran, one of the most repressive states in the world, but I’m sure we’ll hear hardly a peep of dissent; after all, we want the mullahs to like us, and everything that has happened the last 30 years is our fault:
While the Hollywood team’s visit to Tehran is not political, it does show the openness of Iran toward the expansion of cultural relations with the US.
How ironic that the Academy of Motion Pictures is going to one of the most repressive anti-homosexual countries on earth just days after awarding Sean Penn an Oscar for his portrayal of gay San Francisco mayor Harvey Milk. Do they not see the irony? Will they have the courage to speak up, much like Hollywood stars bashed George Bush at every opportunity? Perhaps the stars can visit the factory where Iran manufactures explosively formed projectiles used to kill our soldiers.
When Obama pledged to make the world like us again, what he meant was that we would willingly sacrifice the populations of countries like Iran to perpetual repression so that its repressive leadership liked us and stopped attacking us.
UPDATE: Michael Barone’s article, Liberals Turning Blind Eye to Human Rights, is worth a read. Barone points out that Obama’s foreign policy is an embrace of maintaining the status quo with dictatorships and repressive regimes, which represents a change from prior Democratic and Republican administrations from Jimmy Carter through George W. Bush, all driven by Bush-Derangement-Syndrome:
Not even when the cause of human rights was taken up by Ronald Reagan, in the Philippines as well as against the Soviets, did liberals declare that we should be indifferent to the cause of expanding democracy and freedom in the world. But now they seem to have done so in the desire to repudiate root and branch every policy espoused by George W. Bush.
Perhaps someone should suggest that a stony indifference to the freedom of others is not a very liberal — not a very generous, not a very attractive — thing.
UPDATE No. 2: This is too good for words. No sooner had the Hollywood stars landed, then the Iranian regime announced that there would no meetings unless the stars apologized:
The art advisor to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad urged a visiting Hollywood delegation to apologise for “insults and slanders” about Iranians in films, the ISNA news agency reported on Saturday.
“(Iranian) cinema officials will only have the right to have official sessions with… Hollywood movie makers when they apologise to the Iranians for their 30 years of insults and slanders,” Javad Shamaghdari said.
“The Iranian people and our revolution has been repeatedly unjustly attacked by Hollywood,” he said, citing ‘300’ and recent Oscar nominated movie ‘The Wrestler’ as among offending films.
UPDATE No. 3: Gateway Pundit is reporting on a massive Iranian crackdown on students in Tehran, just as the Hollywood stars are visiting, and asks the question whether the stars will express solidarity? Yes, the stars will express solidarity, the question is, with whom?