“The People Are Sovereign”

“In the United States of America, the people are sovereign,” Senator Russ Feingold says in the video below. The Senator also announces that he will introduce a bill to end all financing for the deployment of American military forces in Iraq after six months.

Even Republican Senator Arlen Specter said that the President cannot ignore the objections of Congress before he sends an additional 21,000 troops to Iraq. Of course, you know that Specter will cave, but that’s what he said today.

Meanwhile, the Bushies seem determined to edge ever closer to war with Iran. Simon Tisdall writes in tomorrow’s Guardian:

US officials in Baghdad and Washington are expected to unveil a secret intelligence “dossier” this week detailing evidence of Iran’s alleged complicity in attacks on American troops in Iraq. The move, uncomfortably echoing Downing Street’s dossier debacle in the run-up to the 2003 Iraq invasion, is one more sign that the Bush administration is building a case for war. …

… State department spokesman Sean McCormack claimed this week the administration has a body of evidence implicating Iran in sectarian attacks against Iraq’s Sunni minority. “There is a high degree of confidence in the information that we already have and we are constantly accumulating more,” he told the New York Times.

Why is this sounding familiar?

… as was also the case in the days before Saddam Hussein fell, powerful external forces, ranging from exiled Iranian opposition groups to leading Israeli politicians, appear intent on stoking the fire – and winding up the White House. … The Bush administration, an American commentator suggested, is “once again spoiling for a fight”.

At the Left Coaster, Sam Gardiner writes,

The President said he’s not going to attack Iran. If that’s true, I am left wondering why the outrage effort. Why has the White House created an interagency working group whose mission is to build outrage in the world about Iran? The whole effort is so much in the pattern of message preparation for Gulf II that I am left concerned.

Well, yes. You’d have to be blind not to see it.

If you missed Keith Olbermann’s special comments tonight — see Crooks and Liars.

13 thoughts on ““The People Are Sovereign”

  1. First off, I got my Pelosi “07” t-shirt today. The first person that saw it was one of my conservative friends and it dam near made him puke. Mission Accomplished!

    Number two: instead of all the anti-war politicians trying to out do each other with one non-binding or almost binding resolution how’s this for an idea? I believe that most reasonable people asked for a timeline (out of this war) a couple of years ago. Bu$hco said a timeline would only send the wrong message to the enemy. Ok. Send the timeline (message) to GW bush. You have one year to fix the mess, one year to end the suffering, one year to save your ass. If the day 1-31-08 comes around and you have not sufficiently quelled the situation in Iraq, and begun to transfer to a U.N. rebuilding mission than we the American taxpayers will start to defund your lost war, we will start to bring home the troops that you sent on a loser. We the undersigned will have only one choice, the managers of this war have had many, now is the time for an end. Don’t blame us, we only waste money until it’s gone! We only believe in lost leaders until we find something else. And we will find something else!

    Isn’t funny that conservatives are so reluctant to spend money on American citizens (in the form of health care, higher education, urban renewal, alternative energy), hey how about building this nation for a change? Answer: Sorry we only have enough for Iraq.

    The American Taxpayer.

  2. idea from versen’s noggin: how about the senate request from prez and pentagon an estimate of how much it will cost to pull the troops out? Will Junior put on airs and refuse to allow the pentagon to give such an estimate?

  3. Sam Gardiner’s mention of the outrage effort was on my mind tonight when after Olbermann Joe Scarborough started with the “breaking news” that unnamed Pentagon sources were suggesting Iranian involvement with the recent Karbala incident, based on no clear reasoning given in the MSNBC report other than, well, maybe they could have been.

  4. I would like to see the press tomorrow ask hard questions at any briefing about this “so-called” evidence. I would like them to be relentless in their questioning (kind of like they were about a certain blue-stained dress). But, I suppose that is too much to ask of the stenographers of the NYT and TWP.

  5. Now Bush is trying to blame Iran for the attack in Najaf that supposedly killed 5 U.S. soldiers.
    Gulf of Tonkin anyone?
    I’m starting to think the whole episode is made up.

  6. Here’s something from yesterday’s Glenn Greenwald, Unclaimed Territory:

    *”There is no reason for the United States of America to remain in ……….. The American people want them home, I believe the majority of Congress wants them home, ……………. The criteria should be to bring them home as rapidly and safely as possible, an evolution which I think could be completed in a matter of weeks.

    Our continued military presence in …….. allows another situation to arise which could then lead to the wounding, killing or capture of American fighting men and women. We should do all in our power to avoid that.

    I listened carefully to the President’s remarks at a news conference that he held earlier today. I heard nothing in his discussion of the issue that would persuade me that further U.S. military involvement in the area is necessary. In fact, his remarks have persuaded me more profoundly that we should leave and leave soon.

    Dates certain, Mr. President, are not the criteria here. What is the criteria and what should be the criteria is our immediate, orderly withdrawal from……….. And if we do not do that and other Americans die, other Americans are wounded, other Americans are captured because we stay too long–longer than necessary–then I would say that the responsibilities for that lie with the Congress of the United States who did not exercise their authority under the Constitution of the United States and mandate that they be brought home quickly and safely as possible. . . .

    I know that this debate is going to go on this afternoon and I have a lot more to say, but the argument that somehow the United States would suffer a loss to our prestige and our viability, as far as the No. 1 superpower in the world, I think is baloney.

    I can tell you what will erode our prestige. I can tell you what will hurt our viability as the world’s superpower, and that is if we enmesh ourselves in a drawn-out situation which entails the loss of American lives, more debacles…………”

    *Words of Senator John McCain, October 19, 1993 speaking of the role of Congressional power to President Clinton regarding the war in Somalia [a war started by Bush 41].

    Glenn has a great roundup of other Republicans speaking of Congress’ power about war decisions.

  7. The problem with the whole Iran thing is that Iran almost certainly IS helping to stir the pot in Iraq … they’re probably supplying arms, training, and experts. When you look at their national interests, from their point of view ya know, they’d be pretty stupid NOT to be doing that kind of stuff.

    So, if the president wants a war, he’ll probably be able to find real, verifiable evidence to back him up this time.

    The issue, of course, is NOT whether or not Iran is involved … they are … the issue is what we should DO about that. War with Iran is the very worst, the very stupidest option that exists.

    But, it’s easy and W understands it, so that may be where we’re headed.



  8. A think-tank commenter on NPR this morning made it quite clear that the administration is using Iran as a distraction. So now we have the Boy-Who-Cried-Wolf scenario, wherein any real dangers posed by Iran cannot be taken seriously, since we all know Bush is a liar in desperate need of said distraction. His ass could be on fire right in front of my eyes, and I would not believe him.

    I keep wondering what life is like in the alternate timestream, where Al Gore was sworn in as president in January 2001. Would al Qaeda be just a fading memory, a shudder and a few tears, followed by a sigh of relief? Would Iran be isolated by a mostly-United Nations? (Except for Russia. Would Putin take the place of Bush as the planet’s most dangerous leader?)

  9. #11, joanr16, last year Al Gore opened “Saturday Night Live” with an address from the Oval Office, as if he did in fact assume the Presidency from the 2000 election. It was both funny and extremely sad at the same time.

    See it here. And weep.

  10. There’s a morsel of truth to allegations that Iran is involved in the conflict in Iraq. It might even be true that 5 GIs were abducted and murdered from a military compound in Iraq as reprisal for the abduction – I mean arrest – of 5 Iranians from a diplomatic facility Iran had in Iraq.

    Bush has been reacting like a jealous rival as Iran and Iraq establish diplomatic and economic ties. The spotlight Bush wants to shine is on paramilitary support from Shiites in Iran, to radicals in Iraq. The actual problem is the money and humanitarian aid Iran is willing to send. And Baghdad is more comfortable with Tehran than they are with Washington. Bush is becoming a lame duck in Iraq, replaced by an arch-enemey in the axis of evil.

    Unfortunately, the decision is not his to make. Iraq will decide who will be their friends and allies. The PM in Iraq is trying to survive; to do that he needs military protection. The US is providing that now, but he is aware it could be gone soon. The PM knows that Bush may scapegoat him, and promote a new slate of officers in Iraq, as if the PM of Iraq was part of the Bush administration, obliged to resign on the whim of the American president. So to survive individually, and as a government, it might be a good idea to have the Iranian army available to protect the government in the green zone.

    If those are actually the dynamics in play, Bush is desparate to force Iran and Iraq apart. If he can’t do that, his influence in Baghdad will fade to nothing, and the cry from Congress for the US to leave Iraq, won’t compare to the demand from Iraq that we get our troops out.

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