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Is Hillary Clinton Talking About The Middle East, Or The United States?

The Tunisian revolution has been intriguing to watch. President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali is one of the few dictators to fall since the Democrats took power in 2006 and took our country in a new direction. Since Obama has been in office, you've seen almost zero action on the global liberty movement front. Indeed, Obama has been uninterested (to the point of negligence) in human rights, especially in the Middle East. Obama's administration seems to favor the old "he's a bastard, but he's our bastard" approach to foreign policy, ranking stability as the ultimate goal and rejecting President Bush's vision for a freer world.

Lee Smith at The Weekly Standard wonders whether Hillary Clinton is more of a Bushie than an Obama-ite:

Thursday afternoon in Doha Secretary Clinton fired a shot across the bow of the Arab political order.

In the Middle East, Clinton said:

one in five young people is unemployed. And in some places, the percentage is far more. While some countries have made great strides in governance, in many others people have grown tired of corrupt institutions and a stagnant political order. They are demanding reform to make their governments more effective, more responsive, and more open. And all this is taking place against a backdrop of depleting resources: water tables are dropping, oil reserves are running out, and too few countries have adopted long-term plans for addressing these problems.

In taking the side of Arab individuals against their ruling regimes, Clinton was reminiscent of the most optimistic days of the Bush administration’s freedom agenda, circa 2005. It is worth wondering what Clinton’s words might have indicated to both the regime and its opponents.

Indeed. And the story of Tunisia is an interesting one. But this post is not about Tunisia. It's about Hillary Clinton's assessment of the Middle East at large.

Hillary Clinton said, "young people have a hard time finding work. In many places, there are simply not enough jobs. Across the region, one in five young people is unemployed. And in some places, the percentage is far more."

One in five young people is unemployed, eh?

Is she really talking about the Middle East, there?

Unemployment at large in the United States is nearly 10%, while nearly 20% of those under the age of 25 are unemployed, and more than a quarter of teens are unemployed:

The unemployment rate for African American youth is even higher at 50.4% percent. Half of African American youths that are actively seeking employment are unable to get hired.

America really needs to fix this, if this is something we're going to lecture other countries about.

Posted by Will Franklin · 17 January 2011 04:22 PM