Romney Flip-Flops on Mideast, Too: Cole in Truthdig

My column is out in Truthdig, entitled, “Mitt Romney’s Big Bad Ideas for the Middle East”.


“The Arab revolutions of 2011 have already removed three dictators and forced governments across the region to abolish draconian states of emergency. Tunisia has had free and fair parliamentary elections, and Egypt’s are scheduled to begin in late November. What is Romney’s response to these epochal events? “We’re facing an Arab Spring which is out of control in some respects because the president was not as strong as he needed to be in encouraging our friends to move toward representative forms of government,” he says.

Romney has conveniently forgotten that as late as Feb. 1 of this year, he was on CNN saying, “I probably would avoid the term ‘dictator’ in referring to Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak.” He was more generous to his predecessors then, not seeking to blame Mubarak’s non-dictatorship (1981-2011) on Obama. Instead, he said, “Over many administrations in this country, we’ve encouraged President Mubarak to move in the direction of providing … freedoms.”

Read the whole thing.

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8 Responses

  1. Mitt Romney flips and flops more than just on the middle -east. A weather-vane is a good symbol for Mitt.

    Romney has several other issues looming over him, besides his flip and flops.

    Updates on; Mitt Romney the Weather-vane candidate.

    link to

    No one likes being exploited, especially those who can’t defend themselves.

  2. This is for the international readers of Professor Cole’s page. I read his blog every morning but don’t really have anything much to add to the discussion that are my own thoughts.

    What I do is to provide links. People around the world are trying to figure out what has happened in the USA. Here is a long interview between Robert Scheer and Chris Hedges which is on the same web site as this article by Juan. I was active in the 1960’s at Berkeley in the anti war protests. This article on class warfare describes what is going on in the US and how OWS – Occupy Wall Street – is different from the 1960’s protest. Another difference is that now the police is a military force. But they are part of the 99% so if they join the OWS in spirit, the power elite will have trouble finding who to enforce their laws. Will they call out the military to stop people from sleeping in public spaces? As Chris Hedges points out, no one knows where these mass protests will lead.

    Here is the link to the Class Struggle article

    link to

  3. “People around the world are trying to figure out what has happened in the USA.”, Don Utter wrote.

    Ans: an enormous amount of deception
    and a mind-boggling amount of corruption

  4. Thank you, Don Utter, for the link to the Scheer-Hedges discussion. It would be valuable to see it continued, particularly in respect to where the OWS movement is going. The discussion refers to many global revolutionary protests and change, and made me think of one it didn’t mention–in the Philippines to bring down Marcos. Marcos folded when the military went with the people. The point (vs. specific demands) seems emphasis on sweeping change–the stepping down, the toppling of a System–in which law enforcement and regular military might join. Whereas in the 60’s protests did not have widespread support of the middle class those movements’ development of awareness of the corruption took longer. It was years before the sense of shame over the Vietnam war became widespread. But the Scheer-Hedges discussion also illustrates the entrenchedness of the 1 percent in holding to power, including control of MSM. The ideas swing between the possibility the occupy movement is powerful enough and on the other hand the 1 percent as too dominant to be brought down.

    • Reply to Joseph Winter

      Chris Hedges was interviewed at the park in NYC a week ago or so. He said that he has been writing about these issues for years but didn’t know HOW to tackle them. He didn’t have recommendations for people. He has been for the last year saying that civil disobedience is the only way to bring about change.

      This is the really big thing that OWS has brought out. It is a place to participate, a public space. It is starting to awaken the 99%.

      You can go back and read Chris Hedges columns from the web site truth dig.

      Also, Greg Mitchell, a journalist who has done many things over the years, including hosting a daily blog about Bradley Manning, now has a blog on the nation web site which contains several updates each day about activity around the world related to OWS.

      I sure hope that OWS cannot be stopped. Chris Hedges uses the term corporate coup d’etat a couple of times. That is what has happened.

      People have been doing excellent work in many areas for years, but have only been able to get limited traction because the power elite runs the game. My hope is that these various themes can be linked and reinforce each other in order to make the need for change unmistakable. Things that must be done.

    • The Occupy movement will lead to other movements, and they will flesh out the elements of the new America in a long-evolving process of interaction with the citizens. Problem is, the country will be going down the tubes during this entire process. An awful lot of the evils that now oppress us is due to movements spawned by the right-wing Ur-movement, the 1964 Goldwater campaign. The 1848 Revolution was the Ur-movement of the European left, spawning a broad spectrum of political parties, movements, and further revolutions. So I guess we’re lucky to be here now, but we may have to spend the rest of our lives working on this.

  5. The funny part about Romney’s comment is, as usual, its obvious lack of sincerity. Mitt “Double Gitmo” Romney would pressure our authoritarian allies about democratic reforms, and it bothers him how little Obama is doing so. Uh huh.

    This outburst is, no doubt, coming from that burning core of passion for democracy that lies unyielding in Mitt’s chest. Yeah, that’s it.

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