'Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization.' -- Eugene V. Debs

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

House Democrats Green Light an Attack Upon Iran 

From the Associated Press:

Top House Democrats retreated Monday from an attempt to limit President Bush's authority for taking military action against Iran as the leadership concentrated on a looming confrontation with the White House over the Iraq war.

Officials said Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other members of the leadership had decided to strip from a major military spending bill a requirement for Bush to gain approval from Congress before moving against Iran.

Conservative Democrats as well as lawmakers concerned about the possible impact on Israel had argued for the change in strategy.

Wow! Am I the only person rendered speechless by this story? Apparently, it is now not only publicly acceptable, but politically astute, to openly subordinate the constitutional requirement that Congress declare war to the perceived interests of Israel. No doubt this is influenced by recent polling showing strong support for the Israelis against the Palestinians, but, even so, the advocacy of a Zionist exemption to the constitutional restraint upon the President's war powers is extraordinary, going far beyond the historic political, miiltary and financial support provided to Israel by the US.

Politically, it confirms the neoconservative contempt for the efforts of the House Democrats to craft an alternative Iraqi policy that would result in the withdrawal of US troops. How can anyone advocate the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq, while allowing the President to proceed towards an attack upon Iran? Indeed, how can anyone plausibly advocate the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq, as they either support, or remain silent, about US efforts to destabilize Lebanon, Palestine and Iran, while increasing troop levels in Afghanistan? Of course, as the neoconservatives claim, its preposterous.

It is important to avoid what the philosophers describe as binary opposition here, because, yes, it is possible for the Democrats to be both mendacious and stupid.

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