Saturday, April 18, 2009


At the recent Summit for the Americas, President Barack Obama continued to impress the world with his unique level of diplomacy and honest talk. Previously he has admitted our nations faults and blame in our history, and has coupled these mea culpas with honest talk of anti-American sentiments and open hostilities towards us. During the Presidential campaign he suggested he would be willing to talk to any foreign leader without pre-conditions (although the Clinton campaign forced him to roll that back slightly and Obama clarified that he meant sending lower level inter mediators instead). Obama acted on these sentiments by not only talking to, but seeking out and shaking the hand of Venezuela's fiery leftist president, Hugo Chavez. Chavez, a harsh critic of America for a decade, told Obama: "With this same hand I greeted Bush eight years ago. I want to be your friend."

Obama also extended a hand to a leader Ronald Reagan spent years trying to drive from power: Nicaragua's Daniel Ortega. The Sandinista president stepped up and introduced himself, just before delivering a blistering 50-minute speech that denounced capitalism and U.S. imperialism as the root of much hemispheric mischief.

Cuba's Raul Castro, barred from attending the summit, reached out to the newly elected President as well. On Tuesday, Obama ordered an easing of travel and remittance restrictions for Americans with relatives in Cuba. Within hours, Castro — who took over from his ailing brother Fidel a year ago — responded with an offer of talks on "everything" that divides the two countries. meaning an open offer for talks since the Eisenhower administration, saying he's ready to discuss "human rights, freedom of the press, political prisoners — everything."

These recent examples of Barack Obama has signaled a complete shift from the Bush "you're either with us, or against us" diplomacy, and the world is obviously responding. Imagine, all of a sudden, the president -- the president of the United States, mind you -- is telling foreigners that we screw up from time to time. That we've gone our own way much too often. That we've been arrogant!

Now is the time for a paradigm shift in attitude by our nation to the world. It is time to release ourselves from the ignorant shackles of past administrations...a drug war that isn't working, embargo's that only serve to hurt the citizens of the countries embargoed, and a cold war against countries / regimes that has gotten us no where. Now is the time for what Obama has described as a "new beginning." Now is the time, and Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State can, and I think will make it happen. And it needs to start with Cuba and Venezuela. And that is the world....."The World According to Kimba" As always, thanks for reading.

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