President Obama's interview with an Islamic television network has filled me with hope. Obama said the United States had made mistakes in the past, but "that the same respect and partnership that America had with the Muslim world as recently as 20 or 30 years ago, there's no reason why we can't restore that." The only question I have is what respect and partnership of the past 20 or 30 years was he referring to?
-Was it the respect and partnership the Iranians showed when they stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran on Nov. 4, 1979 and took 52 Americans hostage?
-Was it the bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut on April 18, 1983?
-Perhaps he was referring to the bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait on Dec. 12, 1983, or maybe the kidnapping of CIA Station Chief William Buckley on March 16, 1984?
-Was it the bombing of the U.S. Embassy annex northeast of Beirut on Sept. 9, 1984?
-Was it the hijacking of Kuwait Airways Flight 221 on Dec. 3, 1984, that resulted in two U.S. officials being murdered?
-Was it the hijacking of TWA Flight 847 on June 14, 1985, that resulted in the murder of a U.S. sailor on board?
-How about the hijacking of the cruise ship Achille Lauro on Oct. 7, 1985, that resulted in the death of another innocent American?
-Was it the bombing of the Rome and Vienna airports on Dec. 12, 1985, that resulted in 20 deaths?
-Was it the bombing of LaBelle Discotheque, a popular club for off-duty U.S. servicemen, on April 5, 1986, in West Berlin that resulted in more than 200 wounded?
-Perhaps he was referring to the three Americans shot in Beirut on April 17, 1986?
-Maybe he meant the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 on Dec. 21, 1988, that resulted in 270 people murdered?
Clearly, when you look back at the past 20 to 30 years, it is obvious that the Muslim world has had the utmost respect and partnership for and with the United States, and then George W. Bush went and screwed it all up. Thank God (Christian, Muslim, or other) that President Obama is here to put things back the way they used to be.
J.P. PAWLUK, GOLDEN VALLEY
If President Obama wants to return us to the policies of dealing with Islamic terrorism that failed for Presidents Carter and Clinton, then we can (reluctantly) look forward to a return of the Islamic world seeing the United States as a 'paper tiger'.