On the eve of the one year anniversary of the most recent Iranian presidential election, the Web site for The New Republic gave space to Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona) to lament the Obama administration's feckless response to the corrupt Iranian regime's crackdown on protesters and its continued quest for nuclear weapons and terrorist sponsorship under Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
In response two days later, Time's Joe Klein resorted to his typical petulant bluster to berate the generally liberal magazine and divert attention from the real issue of Obama's leadership:
The New Republic perplexes me. It has some of the best and smartest writing around. And then it allows John McCain, whose lack of knowledge about Iran is encyclopedic, to hold forth in its pages.
Klein's June 13 Swampland blog post at Time.com focused on one brief excerpt of McCain's item, launching into how he felt McCain was not nuanced enough and hence lacks credibility to address the issue:
[McCain's] lack of knowledge--his tendency to bloviate without thinking--can be staggering, as in this case:
Is it any wonder that this is the same regime that spends its people's precious resources not on roads, or schools, or hospitals, or jobs that benefit all Iranians—but on funding violent groups of foreign extremists who murder the innocent?
Yes, the regime spends money funding noxious terrorist outfits like Hizballah. But it also spends vastly on its people. The road, school and medical systems far surpass those of neighboring countries--they approach the level achieved in that other regional petro-giant, Saudi Arabia (the Iranian school system, though riddled with propaganda when it comes to the teaching of history, is excellent when it comes to math and science--and it is fully coeducational; Iran's women are, without question, the best educated in the region).
More important, under Ahmadinejad, a phenomenal amount of money and attention has gone directly to the poor, especially the widows and children of the 1 million Iraq war casualties, raising them into the middle class.
You get the picture, Ahmadinejad is a bad guy, but he's done some good things. Ol' John McCain just can't see that because he's so blinded by his ideology, Klein insists. At the close of his post, Klein smarmily huffed:
I'd have hoped that the New Republic would have published something more insightful than this onanistic rant.