American politics is in a very, very sad state. Heck, the vaunted “democracy,” the corner stone of which was supposed to be “we the people” being engaged in this noble process is something that nobody believes in anymore. Since the coronation of the imperial presidency of King George II and the rise of the neo-conquistadores the new American Empire’s enablers have so warped, usurped and corrupted the process of democracy that even those who claim to strand up for us, holding aloft the beacon of our best hopes and intensions, have been sucked into the Republican political juggernaut and now resemble that corrupt and militaristic beast.
Nowadays on the Democratic Party side are a number of presidential wannabes all vying to “out Bush Bush” sounding tough and stupid in a silly attempt to find political voter appeal among those who feel that Democrats are “soft on the war in terror.” Without even a cursory analysis of the real meaning, origins and benefits of fighting Mr. Bush’s “War on Terror” Democrats have decided that this is what is en vogue these days and have come up with their own versions, a kind of Republican Lite version, to corner the voting market.
There’s the ever-changing Hillary Clinton who voted feet first to allow King George to invade Iraq without thinking of the short and long term consequences of this unprovoked, jingoistic, militaristic war for oil. Then she changed her tune when she declared her candidacy for the American presidency pandering to the voters who became disillusioned and angry over the war and King George’s embellishments by saying that if she knew now what she knew then she would not have voted for it.
Maybe Ms. Clinton should pick up dancing because she sure as hell conveniently dances around the truth. Her other comments about nuking master terrorist Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, “if” the intelligence is credible,” without thinking about the collateral damage that would occur from such an action suggests another flip-flop even as she waxed hostile and belligerent against Iran. Fact is Ms. Clinton is now in complete lock-step with the Republican Administration when it comes to Iran – something that suggests her deep political opportunism and a character flaw that eschews principles and objectivity for political currency.
So that her recent embrace and dance with one of the Senate’s most rabid, right-wing political leaders on the issue of unilaterally declaring the national armed forces of a sovereign nation a terrorist organization and calling on the Bush Administration to bomb Iran into the stone age again demonstrates Ms. Clinton’s spinelessness and lack of perspective. It is the conjunct of the same behavior and politics that led her in 2002 to endorse and support Bush’s war against Iraq.
Indeed, Ms. Clinton cannot explain in any coherent or intelligent way why she supported a resolution, an amendment to the Pentagon funding bill, that was sponsored by Senators Joseph Lieberman, the so-called independent Democrat from Connecticut who failed to win his own party’s nomination in the last election because of his support for the Bush administration’s policy in Iraq, and Jon Kyl, a right-wing Republican from Arizona.
The resolution accuses Iran of waging “a proxy war against the Iraqi state and coalition forces in Iraq,” a charge that has been repeatedly made—but never substantiated—by the White House and some senior US military commanders. In evoking memories of the pre-invasion saber-rattling before the US put “boots on the ground” in Iraq, the present Iranian attacks by King George and Dancing Hillary are the same kinds of re-worded and re-packaged pretexts now being promoted by the Bush administration to justify military action against Iran.
Further, the amendment calls for the Bush Administration to formally designate the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a “foreign terrorist organization” and impose new sanctions against Iran. Such a move—branding a sovereign government’s principal uniformed security force a gang of “terrorists”—has no precedent in international relations or law and provides a phony pretext for an unprovoked war on Iran.
So how could the leading Democratic presidential candidate support and embrace such a rabid, illegal and chauvinistic policy that literally gives the Bush Administration the green light to launch another unprovoked attack on a country that has not attacked it?
The Ever-Changing Hillary appears to have not learned from her past mistakes. When the doo-doo hit the fan over her political lip-lock with Lieberman the Republicrat and John Kyle the rabid right-wing shrill Ms. Clinton quickly back-peddled and said that the resolution was not meant to authorize war but to send a clear message to Iran and create the conditions for diplomacy. Of course, caught in her own web of embellishments Ms. Clinton did not say exactly how she intended to foster this diplomacy when it has been a long-standing American government policy not to talk to terrorists and the current Bush Administration’s ignoring and demonizing of the Iranian government.
Remember, she made the same claim about her vote to authorize Bush to invade Iraq; that it would serve as a spur for diplomatic efforts. At that time she parroted the administration’s false charges about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction and ties to Al Qaeda—charges that she now echoes in her statements and vote on Iran.
In casting her vote for the Lieberman-Kyle resolution, Clinton declared that it was time to “put some teeth into all this talk about dealing with Iran.” By throwing this kind of putrid red meat to the most reactionary and backward sections of the Democratic and Republican Parties Ms. Clinton hopes to persuade them that as United States president she will change nothing in King George’s “War on Terror.” Perhaps her tactics will change but the broad strategy of United States projection and menacing with military force around the globe will continue.
And her vote was by no means an isolated action. Hillary Clinton has staked out a belligerent policy towards Iran over the past several years, attacking the Bush administration from the right for failing to act more aggressively against the country and linking her limited criticism of the US war strategy in Iraq to concern that the quagmire confronting the US military is limiting actions against Iran.
Last February, speaking before the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the largest Israeli lobbying group in the US, Clinton repeated the claim that Iran was orchestrating attacks on US troops in Iraq and declared that Teheran’s “pro-terrorist, anti-American, anti-Israeli rhetoric only underscores the urgency of our response to the threat we face.”
“US policy must be clear and unequivocal,” she continued. “We cannot, we should not, we must not, permit Iran to build or acquire nuclear weapons. And in dealing with this threat as I have said for a very long time, no option can be taken off the table.”