Brokaw: Ford 'Over-Infatuated' With Shah, Won't Say Reagan's Hard Line Worked On Soviets

December 30th, 2006 6:42 PM
Tom Brokaw took the occasion of the ceremonies attending the death of President Ford to take shots at the foreign policy of both Presidents Ford and Reagan. Speaking with Chris Matthews on MSNBC during the 6 PM ET hour, Brokaw observed:

"President Ford and Henry Kissinger, fairly I think you can say, were over-infatuated with the Shah of Iran.
Iran was an important launching pad for the United States should a war with the Soviet Union break out. It was also the source of great oil [sic], but there was already at that time very strong evidence in Iran that there was an Islamic uprising that eventually overthrew the Shah of Iran."

The Shah fell largely because Jimmy Carter abandoned him. Is Brokaw saying the US should have jumped earlier on Ayatollah Khomenei's bandwagon?

Later, Brokaw was loath to recognize President Reagan's signal accomplishment. "The Cold War was at its peak in those days. Can you say, automatically, it worked to have a hard line against the Soviets, ultimately, when Ronald Reagan said it's an Evil Empire, "tear down this wall" and can you apply the same formulation to Islamic rage? I don't think so."

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