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Wednesday, February 06, 2013

American foreign policy interests


BUCHANAN: THE GOP OBSESSION
By: Patrick J. Buchanan
2/5/2013 02:01 AM

If last week’s hearing for Chuck Hagel raised questions about his capacity to be secretary of defense, the show trial conducted by his inquisitors on the tribunal raised questions about the GOP.
Is the Republican Party, as currently constituted, even capable of conducting a foreign policy befitting a world power? Or has it learned nothing and forgotten nothing since George W. Bush went home and the nation rejected John McCain for Barack Obama?
Consider the great foreign issues on the front burner today.
Will the Japan-China clash over islets in the South China Sea, now involving warplanes and warships circling each other, lead to a shooting war that could, because of our security treaty with Japan, drag in the United States?
Is China an economic rival and trade partner? Or is Beijing seeking strategic and military hegemony in East Asia and the Western Pacific? Is engagement or containment of this emerging superpower the way to go?
Is Vladimir Putin’s Russia friend or foe? Has the “reset” failed?
How many troops should we leave in Afghanistan to prevent its receding into the Taliban darkness, as it did when the Red Army departed in 1989?
Is Iraq, where we lost 4,600 soldiers and 35,000 wounded in a misbegotten war to strip that country of WMD it did not have, about to disintegrate into civil, sectarian and ethnic war? After Bashar Assad falls, will Syria fall to Islamists — or fall apart?
Is Egypt’s military chief correct when he said that the violent eruptions after President Mohammed Morsi’s attempted seizure of dictatorial power could imperil the state itself?
Should the presence of al-Qaida in Mali cause the United States to deepen its military involvement in sub-Saharan Africa? Or does the rancid fruit of NATO’s intervention in Libya to save Benghazi, now an Islamist no man’s land for Westerners, argue for staying out?
Before going ahead with a sequester of Pentagon funds, ought we not first review and reduce the treaty commitments our military is required to honor, many dating back over half a century? All these issues were there to be discussed with Hagel.
Yet, according to Jim Lobe of Inter Press Service, who reviewed the transcript of Hagel’s eight hours of testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, there were more mentions of Israel, 178, than of Iraq, Afghanistan, Russia, Palestine and Palestinians, North Korea, Syria, Pakistan, Egypt, China, NATO, Libya, Bahrain, Somalia, al-Qaida, Mali, Jordan, Turkey, Japan and South Korea combined.
In the runup to the Hagel hearings, North Korea tested an intercontinental rocket and indicated a third nuclear bomb test may be imminent. Dictator Kim Jong Un said the “target” of these tests is that “sworn enemy of the Korean people,” the U.S.A.
Yet North Korea was mentioned only 11 times in Hagel’s day-long testimony, while Iran was mentioned 170 times.
But Iran has no missile that can reach the United States, has never tested a nuclear device or bomb, has no nuclear weapons program, according to the unanimous verdict of our 16 intelligence agencies, has never enriched uranium to weapons grade, and has all of its nuclear facilities under constant U.N. surveillance and inspection.
Far from threatening America with nuclear fire like North Korea’s 20-something dictator, the Ayatollah Khamenei has declared a fatwa against Iran’s ever possessing atomic weapons.
This is no brief for a Tehran regime that is no friend of this country. But to suggest Iran cannot be contained as the nuclear-armed Soviet Union of Stalin and China of Mao were contained is absurd.
Whom has Iran attacked in the 33 years since the old ayatollah came back from Paris, while Uncle Sam has attacked or invaded Grenada, Panama, Haiti, Libya twice, Iraq twice, Afghanistan and Serbia?
Query: What is behind this Republican preoccupation, bordering on obsession, with Israel and its nemesis Iran, to the near exclusion of other threats and dangers faced by our country all over a world that is a good bit larger than one small corner of the Middle East? Has Sheldon Adelson replaced Henry Kissinger as the eminence grise of the GOP?
Sen. Lindsey Graham implied it was an outrage to suggest any senator may have been intimidated by an Israeli lobby that has on its wall the scalps of two chairmen of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee: J.W. Fulbright and Charles Percy.
Who is Lindsey kidding?
Did Bibi Netanyahu, after dissing the U.S. president in the Oval Office, receive those 29 standing ovations at a joint session of Congress, thereby breaking Stalin’s all-time record before the Supreme Soviet, because Bibi gave one helluva speech?
In this city, the Israeli lobby is regarded as right up there with the National Rifle Association as a crowd that rewards its friends and punishes its enemies, with this exception: Far more congressmen and senators are willing to stand up to the NRA than to defy AIPAC.
Where there is no vision, the people perish. Where is the vision that Republicans had in the time of Reagan?

9 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Hilarious, if it weren't so damn sad.

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  2. "Did Bibi Netanyahu, after dissing the U.S. president in the Oval Office...."

    Oh, come on Pat.

    Obama went on Letterman rather than meet with Bibi.

    Pat's just another old greasy Jew hating Catholic from way back.

    Always ends his articles by mentioning Reagan too.



    It's Here… Obama's Rudest Moments Caught on Tape | The ...
    www.thegatewaypundit.com/.../its-here-obamas-rudest-moments-cau...
    Mar 11, 2012 – And, keeping Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu waiting while he went and ate was another great moment of Obama arrogance. But this was ...
    In unusual snub, Obama to avoid meeting with Netanyahu | Reuters
    www.reuters.com/.../us-israel-iran-netanyahu-idUSBRE88A10B2012...
    Sep 11, 2012 – Netanyahu has had a strained relationship with Obama, but they have met on all but one of his ... "The world tells Israel, 'Wait, there's still time.
    Obama chooses Letterman over Netanyahu - San Angelo ...
    www.examiner.com/.../obama-chooses-letterman-over-netanyahu-1
    Sep 12, 2012 – Barack Obama is a man with a vision—tunnel vision. He has his ... In a speech, Netanyahu said, “The world tells Israel wait, there's still time. And I say ......
    Netanyahu leaves U.S. disgraced, isolated and weaker - Israel ...
    www.haaretz.com/.../netanyahu-leaves-u-s-disgraced-isolated-and-we...

    Obama Snubbed Netanyahu to Have Dinner with Michelle and the ...
    www.newsrealblog.com/.../obama-snubbed-netanyahu-to-have-dinne...
    Mar 26, 2010 – I'm afraid we'll have to take the possibility that Obama is not merely no ... but keeps the Israeli Prime Minister waiting in the downstairs lobby ...

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  3. Pat's got a point about Reagan though. He was for building the military up, not tearing it down, as Barky wishes to do.

    He was for putting those intermediate range missiles in Germany, and Star Wars, and building up the Navy, and this put the pressure on the Soviet Union. And for tearing down the Berlin Wall. Which no longer exists, or the Soviet Union, either.

    And Reagan didn't have it in for Israel.

    We could do worse these days perhaps.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here's Ron, taking on the Jap, and taking on Nancy too -

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShbUe7xgtwo

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  4. Like it or not, Jerusalem is the center of the universe,

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  5. In the runup to the Hagel hearings, North Korea tested an intercontinental rocket and indicated a third nuclear bomb test may be imminent. Dictator Kim Jong Un said the “target” of these tests is that “sworn enemy of the Korean people,” the U.S.A.


    North Korea has been threatening the USA now for several decades.

    Nothing new here. Nothing to see. Nothing to report.

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  6. More mentions of Israel, 178, than of Iraq, Afghanistan, Russia, Palestine and Palestinians, North Korea, Syria, Pakistan, Egypt, China, NATO, Libya, Bahrain, Somalia, al-Qaida, Mali, Jordan, Turkey, Japan and South Korea combined.


    Maybe because Israel is more important to American interests?

    Read the main stream media. They cover Israel (negatively) 300 to one.

    Fact the facts. Israel is more important.

    ReplyDelete
  7. It only came to light after a blackout on reporting agreed by the media and the Obama administration was broken by two US newspapers.

    The revelation that the US has been operating a secret drone base in Saudi Arabia for the past two years came after a blackout on reporting agreed by American media and the Obama administration was broken by two US newspapers.

    The first pilotless CIA mission flown from the base killed Anwar al-Awlaki, a US-born cleric and senior figure in al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and a deputy in September 2011, reports said.

    Another Predator drone strike killed Awlaki’s 16-year-old son Abdulrahman weeks later, though US officials claimed in the Washington Post that he was not the target of the attack.

    The Washington Post said several US media organisations knew of the drone base but abided by official requests not to disclose its location because of the risk to counter-terrorism cooperation with Saudi Arabia.

    The Post said that when it learned that another news organisation - the New York Times - planned to break the agreement, it decided to publish what it knew.

    Greg Miller and Karen DeYoung of the Post said: “The Washington Post had refrained from disclosing the location at the request of the administration, which cited concern that exposing the facility would undermine operations against an al-Qaeda affiliate regarded as the network’s most potent threat to the United States, as well as potentially damage counterterrorism collaboration with Saudi Arabia.

    “The Post learned Tuesday night that another news organisation was planning to reveal the location of the base, effectively ending an informal arrangement among several news organisations that had been aware of the location for more than a year."

    A Justice Department memo published by NBC News on Tuesday argued that Americans high up in Al-Qaeda could be lawfully killed, even without evidence they are actively plotting an attack.

    President Barack Obama’s decision to nominate John Brennan as CIA director has brought into focus the quasi-official lethal drone programme, which has killed an estimated 3,000 militants and civilians in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen.

    Mr Brennan faces a confirmation hearing in Congress on Thursday that provides critics a rare chance to question the ethics of using drone missiles.

    ReplyDelete