George Weigel (CR, Oct. 22) takes the Nobel Committee to task for its prize for peace to Barack Obama by attributing to it the belief that “conflict is born of misunderstanding rather than a clash of interests; thus diplomacy is a therapeutic exercise in which soothing words make for peace.” He couples that with the claim that the committee ignores the value of “structures by which conflict is resolved politically.” Both statements are clearly hyperbole, but they allow Weigel a launching pad for his own beliefs in confronting our enemies.
His examples of human rights examples are selective. For example, China and Iran are mentioned, but our allies Saudi Arabia and Israel are not. This selectivity reduces the scope of our efforts and makes America appear hypocritical.
Such selectivity becomes dangerous when in the name of human rights those like Weigel enable those who would use violence to promote a very different agenda. In the Middle East and western Asia, that agenda is domination and control of energy resources. Of immediate concern is the matter of Iran. The views of influential enablers such as Weigel contribute to the same kind of propaganda blitz that preceded our ill-founded invasion of Iraq. I urge Weigel and others in their laudable promotion of human rights to consider the 70 million ordinary Iranians who will be exposed to death and deprivation if this march to war continues.