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Embassy Row: Unleashing the wolves on Iranian exiles in Iraq
Question of the Day
Amir Emadi feels betrayed by the Obama administration, which he accuses of abandoning his father and thousands of other unarmed Iranian exiles in Iraq.
"This is not the America I grew up reading about," he said at a Washington tribute Saturday to his father and 51 other dissidents killed Sept. 1 by Iraqi gunmen who attacked with impunity, cheered on by Iran's theocratic regime.
Mr. Emadi, a naturalized U.S. citizen, blames President Obama for reneging on U.S. promises to safeguard the dissidents, who surrendered their weapons in 2003.
U.S. troops defended the dissidents until 2009, when Mr. Obama turned over responsibility for the disarmed rebels to an Iraqi regime that was growing close to Iran, which wants the dissidents returned for execution.
All of the 52 dissidents killed two weeks ago held U.S. identity cards showing they were supposed to have been under U.S. protection.
"Mr. President, as a U.S. citizen who lost his father, I have one question for you," Mr. Emadi said. "When would America's written commitments mean something? Keep your damn promise. Keep your promise."
The State Department and the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad have denounced the massacre and urged Iraq's government to track down the killers and work with the United Nations to relocate the Iranians to other countries.
Mr. Emadi's mother and other relatives are among more than 3,000 dissidents at the Camp Liberty refugee compound in Baghdad.
At the tribute, Mr. Emadi was joined by many former top U.S. officials who support the dissidents.
A DAY WITH MEXICANS
Mexican Ambassador Eduardo Medina Mora has done something no other foreign diplomat has dared to do in the U.S. He attacked Hollywood for stereotyping Mexicans as gardeners and drug dealers.
"I'm still eagerly waiting for the movie where Salma Hayek plays a Nobel Prize-winning chemist that teaches young Americans to create new forms of alternative energy," he told reporters at the National Press Club last week.
Mr. Medina Mora drew journalists to his news conference with a deliberately intriguing announcement that he would challenge the stereotype of Mexican immigrants in American films.
"Mexicans on the silver screen are usually portrayed as poor and uneducated at best — corrupt and violent at worst," he said. "It is not only racist. It is totally wrong."
Even when Hollywood tries to spoof rich, white Americans with Mexican maids, the message gets muddled. In the 2004 film "A Day Without a Mexican," all Mexicans in California suddenly vanish, leaving the residents of Beverly Hills and other rich, white enclaves to wash their own dishes and cut their own lawns.
Foreign visitors in Washington this week include:
• President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete of Tanzania, who meets with members of Congress and receives an award from the International Conservation Foundation Caucus at its Congressional Gala on Wednesday.
• Danilo Turk, a former president of Slovenia and one of the possible candidates to succeed U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. He addresses the School for Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.
• President Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra Leone, who addresses the School for Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.
• President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud of Somalia, who speaks at the Woodrow Wilson International Center.
• Embassy Row is published on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. James Morrison can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or @EmbassyRow.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
James Morrison joined the The Washington Times in 1983 as a local reporter covering Alexandria, Va. A year later, he was assigned to open a Times bureau in Canada. From 1987 to 1989, Mr. Morrison was The Washington Times reporter in London, covering Britain, Western Europe and NATO issues. After returning to Washington, he served as an assistant foreign editor ...
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