WASHINGTON — U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann told a gathering of conservatives here on Friday that the Obama administration’s “policy of apology and appeasement” has helped spark the backlash against Americans in the Middle East this week.
Speaking at the Value Voters Summit, Bachmann accused Obama of bowing to pressure from members of the Muslim community and weakening the United States diplomatically in the process. The speech came the same day Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney softened his criticism of Obama’s foreign policy in the region.
The protests in the Middle East, driven by an anti-Islam film, turned violent this week and led to the deaths of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya and three others on Tuesday.
“Barack Obama has been the most dangerous president we have ever had on American foreign policy,” Bachmann said. “And we cannot sustain another four years of Jimmy Carter-like policies.”
She gave a string of supposed examples: an interview Obama gave with a Middle Eastern television station in which he pledged to work in the Middle East to bring about peace; his high-profile 2009 foreign policy speech in Cairo, which Bachmann said was attended by members of the Muslim Brotherhood; and the administration’s alleged support of the intergovernmental Organization for Islamic Cooperation and its collaboration with Islamic leaders to “do a complete purge of any federal materials from references to the ideology of Islam.”
More broadly, Bachmann said the protests weren’t just about the film. “This was an intentional act that was done by radical Islamists who seek to impose their set of beliefs on the rest of the world, and we will not stand for it,” she said.
Some of Bachmann’s accusations were included in her calls for an investigation into the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood on the American government. In June, Bachmann and a handful of other conservative lawmakers sent letters to federal inspectors general asking for investigations into their departments. The letters were highly controversial, and led not only to a quarrel with fellow Minnesota U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, but also the public denouncement from high-ranking Republicans like John McCain and John Boehner.
Taken together, Bachmann said Friday, “We should not be ignorant of the objective reality that there is a very radical wing of Islam that is dedicated to the destruction of America,” she said. “And what we’re watching develop before our eyes today are the direct consequences of this administration’s policy of apology and appeasement across the globe and the supposed success of the president’s foreign policy genius.”
Read her full speech here.
Devin Henry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @dhenry