PAWatercooler had the great honor of speaking with Ambassador John R. Bolton on the occasion of his being awarded the Patrick Henry Award from the Philadelphia Freedom Center.
The Philadelphia Freedom Center was established two years ago to expose local ties to international extremism and terrorism, and defend America’s Free Society through educating the public to preserve traditional constitutional values of individual freedom, rule of law, private property and limited government. The Center has traditionally hosted acclaimed individuals, sponsored prestigious events in and around the Philadelphia area since last fall. The Center’s director is Craig Snider.
The Philadelphia Freedom Center bestowed its inaugural Patrick Henry Award on Ambassador John Bolton for his dedication to defend and protect individual liberties. Like Patrick Henry, Bolton refuses to remain silent as socialist ideals and oppressive policies are imposed on the American people.
Ambassador Bolton is remarkably refreshing in his candor. Unapologetic in his defense of American interests, his clear-eyed analysis of foreign affairs looks unflinchingly at the people and situations with which the United States has to work, not the people and situations we only wish were at our disposal. He strongly believes that the Obama Administration has little or no interest in foreign policy, a policy that has made the world more dangerous.
In this first part of the interview, I asked Ambassador Bolton about the events unfolding in Egypt and if, as Anwar Ibrahim wrote in the Wall Street Journal earlier this week, Tunisia was the “first domino” of countries in the Middle East.
Ambassador Bolton believes that while the inspiration for the demonstrations may be Tunisia, the underlying causes of the unrest in Tunisia, Yemen and Egypt are different. Today (Friday) is particularly critical as it is anticipated that many protesters will take to the streets after Friday religious services. Up until today, the participants in the protests have largely been young people, mostly secular. The concern is that the Muslim Brotherhood will now get involved.
Bolton remarks that is important to remember that while many of the “twitter revolutions” begin with young people wanting greater freedoms from their oppressive regimes, the reality is that there is no guaranty that the high minded ideals driving the unrest will translate into what we in the West recognize as democracy and liberty.
I asked Ambassador Bolton about the Obama Administration’s response to the uprising in Egypt.
“They have been caught by surprise by this,” Bolton said. But then so has the rest of the world. It is hard for the Administration to comment or insert the U.S. into this situation because there is no clear certainty about what will eventually happen. “It’s not clear that they would listen to us anyway,” Bolton said. “The French are far more involved in Tunisian affairs than the U.S. is involved with Egypt,” and they had virtually no input into the events that transpired there earlier this month.
Has the U.S. missed an opportunity on the occurrence of the unrest in the Arab world?
Ambassador Bolton does not believe so, in the cases of the events in Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen, simply because of the great uncertainty surrounding these areas.
What about Iran’s Green Revolution? Did the U.S. miss an opportunity there?
“Absolutely,” Bolton believes. Bolton has made no secret of his belief that regime change in Iran should be U.S. policy. A nuclear Iran is a grave threat to the whole world and is the beginning of nuclear proliferation throughout the Middle East.
Check back later for more on PAWatercooler’s conversation with John Bolton.