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Saturday, September 15, 2012

Internet Video and Pervasive Evil

"President Obama, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden attend ceremony of return of Libyan fallen to U.S. The heartbreaking return of the bodies of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, Tyrone Woods, Sean Smith and Glen Doherty takes place as Marines are dispatched to Libya and Yemen — and as rioting spreads to other Muslim nations."

There was a time when international news was about incidents caused by the collisions of government leaders. 

Now, practically anybody can create horrible international incidents with the viral circulation of social media broadcasts. Looking beyond the horrible outrage, spreading throughout the Muslim world about an amateur YouTube video perceived as being anti the Prophet Mohamed, we're told by the Romney campaign that the street riots would not have occurred, if he were president. Really?

Does Romney have a special ability to curtail evil? Of course he doesn't. As a matter of fact, Romney demonstrated his ability to make bad news even worse, through his inappropriate response to Egyptian and Libyan violence, motivated by the evil intended video.

It's impossible to prevent every zealous outburst by narcissistic people, determined to perpetrate evil actions. If Romney has a special ability to identify and eradicate evil, he should have used it to help, rather than harm, the inflamed situation in Libya. Instead, Romney's political ambitions over reacted while violent events were unfolding in Benghazi, Libya, where our American Ambassador Stevens and three other Americans were murdered.

Muslim conflagrations in reaction to the harmful video will subside,  but those who perpetrated the violence must be held accountable. This justice includes the creator of the harmful video, as well as those who murdered American diplomats, a result of it's evil intended social media impact. This international incident is an example of how pervasive evil knows no international borders or religious orientation.  The creator of the anti-Muslim video is just as evil as those who murdered our respected American Ambassador Stevens and his diplomatic colleagues.   

Pervasive international evil can only be rebuffed by enlightened leaders who must "first do no harm" in their response.  Good leaders create calm in the midst of chaos.  President Obama and Secretary Clinton are experts at this calming talent.  Nonetheless, it will take extraordinary restraint and leadership, concurrently, to navigate through the international rapids caused by the wake of the Internet video incident.  Pervasive evil has no magic anecdote. There's no remedy to fix the evils throughout the world.  

Romney's political response to the evil caused by a cheap video is harming, rather than helping, the resulting international situation. 

By doing more harm than good, Romney demonstrates how his leadership style is not compatible with promoting calm during a crises.  At the very least, Romney should call for a national day of grief in response to all the victims of international evil acts. 

President Obama and Secretary Clinton affirmed the horror of the Benghazi killings, showing their grief, broadcast around the world, when the coffins of the four American victims were returned home. They understand how to push back on pervasive evil, by demonstrating dignity and compassion for its innocent victims and calling for justice against the perpetrators of the crimes. They exemplify the quality of leadership our nation needs during increasingly turbulent times, incited by evil.  

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