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I admit that I never thought Obama would shake Chazes' hand.

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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:01 PM
Original message
I admit that I never thought Obama would shake Chazes' hand.
Edited on Sat Apr-18-09 08:01 PM by Renew Deal
I thought for sure that Obama would conveniently avoid Chavez. And I admit I was wrong. Obama has balls of steel. He knows what's going to happen, but as he's shown in the past, he doesn't care. He's in charge and he's doing things his way. That's leadership.

I still would bet he doesn't shake Ahmadinejad's hand. He will shake Castro's because he's trying to get the Cuba problem solved.
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Median Democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:03 PM
Response to Original message
1. Okay, Teabagging and Now Balls Of Steel
Way too much macho imagery around DU these days.

<>
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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:06 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. I knew someone would point that out.
But it's appropriate. :D
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:04 PM
Response to Original message
2. The US tried to get Chavez dead
not the other way around.

What's your beef with the only world leader to call out our torture president in an international forum?

Seriously, until you're sure Chavez is stealing your cable, you might think about taking another look.
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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:08 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. That's not how the US works.
This really has nothing to do with me. You know how we do things around here. Remember Clinton's "handshake" with Castro. Clinton was ridiculed. Remember the campaign? One of the questions was would Obama talk to Chavez without "pre-conditions" and the ramifications of the answer. Well, it turns out the answer so far is he's willing to walk across the room and shake his hand. That's a BIG DEAL! Just watch the press next week. It's a 2-4 day story.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:11 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. You're right. It is a big story.
"US President shakes hand of Venezuela Leader Targeted for 2002 US-backed Execution".

That should have been the headline.

It's huge. Their pic together was on the front page at OAS.

Here's to a better decade with sane people in charge. :)
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tabasco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:05 PM
Response to Original message
3. Not shaking hands would be petty and stupid.
Sounds like something AWOL Bush would do.

How are we supposed to influence people if we don't even acknowledge them and treat them with basic courtesy?
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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:09 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. Just Bush?
Do you think Clinton would have?
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tabasco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:10 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Yes, I do.
Clinton understood his leadership responsibility and his administration conducted a very successful foreign policy.
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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:12 PM
Response to Reply #7
9. I don't think it's so cut and dry.
Clinton also was cautious with the old American foreign policy.
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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:14 PM
Response to Reply #7
10. Here's an old article about the Clinton-Castro handshake
The Times (London)
September 8, 2000
Clinton breaks taboo to shake Castro's hand

FROM JAMES BONE IN NEW YORK

BILL CLINTON has broken a decades-old taboo and become the first United States President to shake hands
with Fidel Castro, Cuba's revolutionary leader.

The historic gesture, sure to provoke controversy in America, took place during a fleeting encounter on
Wednesday in a crowd of other leaders at the United Nations summit in New York.

UN sources say the meeting happened as about 150 presidents, princes and prime ministers ambled from a
luncheon thrown by Kofi Annan, the UN Secretary-General, into the nearby Trusteeship Council
for a "class photo".

"It's all the buzz," said one UN official. "As they went from lunch to the photo there was a choke point and Castro
and Clinton moved gradually together and they shook hands and exchanged a few words."

A US official confirmed the meeting and said: "Castro approached him at the end of the lunch and they
just exchanged just a sentence or two."

Mr Clinton told Tony Blair, the Prime Minister, about the encounter when the two met for a drink at the
Waldorf-Astoria hotel later on Wednesday evening.

Speculation was rife that the meeting had been carefully scripted following Mr Clinton's decision to please Cuba
by sending home the "boat child" Elin Gonzlez, who was the subject of a bitter custody battle after being rescued
from a shipwreck that killed his mother as she fled their Communist homeland.

"He wouldn't do it accidentally," said one Western official. "There may be some people who Clinton just bear-hugs
anyway, but I think he would recognise Castro."

According to one version, the encounter was almost disrupted by Seor Castro's friend, President Chavez of
Venezuela, who was trying to meet Mr Clinton himself.

As Seor Chavez approched, another leader kept him away. "Chavez made a lunge for Clinton just as Clinton
and Castro were coming together and someone threw a bodycheck to prevent him interfering," the UN source
said.

Another diplomatic source confirmed that Seor Castro took the initiative. "Clinton and Castro were watching
each other through the sides of their eyes," he said. "Castro started to move toward Clinton and Clinton
remained there. Chavez was about to be the next one to greet Clinton and Fidel cut across him."

The greeting, which took place out of view of reporters while the assembled leaders were not accompanied by
aides or bodyguards, suggests that Mr Clinton intends a warming of relations with Cuba to be one of the legacies
of his presidency.

As well as returning Elin Gonzlez, the Clinton Administration has been pushing for a relaxation of the
trade embargo imposed on Cuba after Seor Castro seized power in 1959.

Direct telephone links have been restored between the two countries, and the House of Representatives recently
passed a measure easing restrictions on exporting food and medicine to Cuba.

The rapprochement is fraught with political dangers for Vice-President Al Gore's presidential campaign,
particularly in the key state of Florida. The vociferous Cuban exile community there fears that Mr Gore will
further relax sanctions if he is elected, while the Republican manifesto lays down stringent conditions on
any easing of the embargo and calls for "active American support for Cuban dissidents".

http://www.latinamericanstudies.org/us-cuba/taboo.htm
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Guy Whitey Corngood Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 08:17 PM
Response to Reply #6
11. Clinton shook Fidel Castro's hand so yes Clinton was not childish
Edited on Sat Apr-18-09 08:18 PM by Guy Whitey Corngood
and stupid either. Or do you mean Hillary Clinton? She was all smiles when President Chavez Gave President Obama the book so maybe she would maybe she wouldn't. But it seemed liked the right thing to do neither side should be afraid or mistrustful of the other.

On edit I just saw your Clinton-Castro reply.
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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-18-09 10:11 PM
Response to Original message
12. This may come as a surprise to you...

...but shaking someone's hand is typically what you do when you meet them.


The entire point of a handshake is that it mutually disables the most common striking hand (i.e. the right).

The action of pumping the hand up and down is to dislodge any weapons that might be concealed in the sleeves.

Our president is left handed, so he can shake someone's hand and still punch the daylights out of them if need be.

However, I'm sure that you can expect the president to have the manners and common courtesy to shake the hand of another person to whom he is introduced.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-19-09 02:05 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. And Obama went out of his way yet a third time to make contact with Chavez
Reaching behind other leaders to kid around with him.







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knowbody0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-19-09 02:28 AM
Response to Original message
14. being respectful, not arrogant, not whimpy.
that's the way to create meaningful dialog. those photos may just go down in history, as the beginning of world peace. We have the biggest guns, so we are number one, but guns and bombs only create terrorism and insurgencies. Our number one position on the weapons totem has left us with a wake of clusterfucks.
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