When I returned from Vietnam,I spent a year at the Ferguson Clinic in Grand Rapids Michigan, doing a colo-rectal residency.Our Congressman was Gerry Ford.He was a decent human being, who by his common sense and leadership did bring our national nightmare to an end after Watergate.
I was reflectiong today how the pardon of President Nixon had potentially far reaching results other than the above.Probably Ford lost the election because of the pardon ,and the gaffe he committed during the Presidential debate with Carter over the Soviet role in Eastern Europe.
Had Ford been elected would the Iranians have taken over our Embassy for one year?The weakness and ineptness of Carter taught the Iranians that they could run roughshod over the Americans,a lesson they have not forgotten.
Within hours of Reagan's inauguration , the hostages were released.
Michael Oren wrote a beautiful historical perspective in yesterday's WSJ on the American attachment to the historic rights of the Jewish people in Israel (Palestine) from our very inception as a country.This support by most Presidents,and Christian groups is what Carter is trying to undermine in his new book(according to Oren).
Had Ford won of course, no one would be interested in a peanut farmers ideas on the Middle East.
But even as a former President,Carter's outrageous use of the word APARTHEID in his title, is not only incindiary and meant to shock and sell books, but it removes him from the role of unbiased author. His one sidedness, and stubborness in the face of facts excludes him from from those who consider themselves " friends of Israel."
In fact the enemies of the Jewish State have a new hero.
When the historians evaluate and compare the feelings of our citizens to our Presidents,Carter will never rate the warmth,respect and affection that Americans feel on the loss of President Ford.