There are times when it's hard to believe that this is how my country acts now. That somewhere in government, some young bureaucrat had the idea that the President should publicly honor the Iranian New Year, and that bureaucrat felt that her superiors would also think this a good idea, and, indeed, the thought went all the way to the President, who agreed that a display of engagement and goodwill was consonant with our national values and foreign policy goals.
Of course, as Mark Hemingway notes, President Bush did basically the same thing last year.
The entire thing seems pretty indicative of the problem with having 20-something pundits who don't actually know anything. They feel free to hold forth about the weaponizing of space or getting rid of the Air Force or caucus politics in Nevada without knowing anything more than what was in the major papers that day (and what other bloggers said about those stories).
(Just to be clear, that weaponizing space link isn't a jab at Galley Friend M.G., it's an example of actual reporting taking apart glib pontificating.)