But that is not why they are grateful that Obama is in the White House. They are thankful for his weakness, and for his fear of supporting pro-American forces at a moment when such support could dramatically and fundamentally change the world.
Look around and you’ll see America’s enemies reaching for the oxygen mask. China faces insurrections in Buddhist Tibet and in the Muslim West, and from the likes of Mr. Chen. Iran’s regime is divided as never before (a few days ago President Ahmadinejad instructed the officials of his government to shred without reading any communications from the speaker of Parliament, a loyalist of the Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei). Meanwhile, attacks against installations of the Revolutionary Guards continue apace, as does the ongoing purge of the officer corps. Chavez is dying. Putin has millions of angry Russians yelling at him. And so it goes.
If America’s president had supported Mr. Chen and others like him, it would have given hope to the freedom fighters everywhere that things may change for the better, because, after all, America is still America.
Obama does not want that message sent. He has other concerns, like dragging American soldiers in front of television cameras at 4 a.m. to serve as extras in his latest political ad.
No wonder America’s enemies are contemptuous of the man and grateful for his weakness and his alienation from American values.
No wonder this moment is so very reminiscent of the last days of Jimmy Carter.
No wonder the war against America is gathering strength.