Just as Carter was the president who lost Persia/Iran.
The crux of the problem? This statement:
The street revolts in Tunisia and Egypt showed that the United States can do very little to save its friends from the wrath of their citizens.
We should never be “friends” with non-representative governments. Not as a country, and not as individuals. Any American declaring “friendship” with a dictator needs a serious horse-whipping. Yes, including all those pretty Hollywood Castro lovers.
Certainly we may have treaties and trade with various repressive tyrannies. But no pretense that those governments are our equals, much less our friends. If they don’t like it, we don’t have to interact with them at all.
I’ve said it before: there are oppressors, and then there are the oppressed.
Choose your side.