“Let me be clear: America will not retreat until the terror fight is over.”
Back in 2009, former President Barack Obama delivered a speech at American University in Cairo, Egypt, that “promised a new beginning with Muslim and Arab countries.” The right criticized Obama “for placing too much blame on the U.S. for strife in the region.”
On Thursday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo rejected Obama’s Middle East policy and stated “the age of self-inflicted American shame is over.”
From Fox News:
Pompeo, while not mentioning Obama by name, said that “it was here, in this city, another American stood before you” and “told you that radical Islamist terrorism does not stem from ideology.”
“He told you that 9/11 led my country to abandon its ideals, particularly in the Middle East,” he said at the American University in Cairo. “He told you that the United States and the Muslim world needed ‘a new beginning.’ The results of these misjudgments have been dire.”
Pompeo said that under Obama, the U.S. abandoned its allies and was “timid” about asserting itself, that the U.S. “grossly underestimated the tenacity and viciousness of radical Islamism,” and kept silent as Iranians tried to rise up against the regime in Tehran.
He also criticized Obama-era policy for “wishful thinking [that] led us to look the other way” as Hezbollah built up its weaponry in Lebanon, and for doing nothing as Syrian President Bashar Assad gassed his own people.
Pompeo turned his attention to Iran and attacked the nuclear deal, which President Donald Trump withdrew America from in 2018. From The Times of Israel:
“President Trump has reversed our willful blindness to the danger of the regime and withdrew from the failed nuclear deal, with its false promises,” Pompeo said. “Countries increasingly understand that we must confront the ayatollahs, not coddle them.”
He said that “In Lebanon, Hezbollah remains a major presence, but we won’t accept this status quo. Our aggressive sanctions campaign against Iran is also directed at the terror group and its leaders.”
He also promised our allies in the Middle East that America will always be there:
“Our aim is to partner with our friends and vigorously oppose our enemies, because a strong, secure, and economically viable Middle East is in our national interest – and yours,” he said. “Let me be clear: America will not retreat until the terror fight is over.”
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