Friday, November 7, 2008

2 articles on Obama

Obama advisers discuss preparations for war on Iran

thought he was going to dismember homeland security? think
By Justin Raimondo

** Getting down to bizness with Obama **
November 7, 2008

When I hear talk of a "honeymoon" for the President-elect -- to last as
long as six months, by some accounts -- I think: "Fine. You lay off, and
I'll do the same." But oh no, it doesn't work that way. Obama has
already started in on us, and he hasn't even taken the oath of office yet.
I'm talking about his appointments, starting with Rahm Emanuel as his
chief of staff.

Hey, I thought we were gong to be treated to a bipartisan approach by the
Obama administration, that he was going to "reach across the aisle" --
what happened to that? Señor Emanuel is known as a street-fightin'
Democrat, and that's understating it. A *Rolling Stone* profile of
Emanuel had this to say: "There's the story of how, the night after
Clinton was elected, Emanuel was so angry at the president's enemies that
he stood up at a celebratory dinner with colleagues from the campaign,
grabbed a steak knife and began rattling off a list of betrayers, shouting
'Dead! . . . Dead! . . . Dead!' and plunging the knife into the table
after every name. 'When he was done, the table looked like a lunar
landscape,' one campaign veteran recalls. 'It was like something out of
The Godfather.'"

He's mean, he's ultra-partisan, and he's a fully-paid up member in good
standing of the War Party: during the Democratic primaries in 2006, when
Emanuel headed up the Dems' congressional operation, he backed pro-war
candidates over antiwar Democrats every time. As Bill Safire put it on
"Meet the Press" just before Tim Russert died: "What about Rahm Emanuel
[for Vice President], the most powerful voice in the House of
Representatives that agrees with Hillary Clinton on foreign affairs? He's
a hawk. And although he's a rootin' tootin' liberal on domestic affairs,
he is a hawk on foreign affairs. I was at the -- a roast for him for
Epilepsy Association, and Hillary Clinton was there, and I said, quite
frankly, here you have the hawkish side of the Democratic Party. If they
get together, the bumper sticker will read 'Invade and bomb with Hillary
and Rahm.'"

When the House Democratic majority passed a military appropriations bill
slated for Iraq, a clause that would have prohibited an attack on Iran
without a vote in Congress was deleted at the instigation of Emanuel and
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. When Rep. John Murtha presaged the popular
rebellion against the Iraq war by coming out against it in no uncertain
terms, Emanuel urged Pelosi to refrain from endorsing his call for
withdrawal, arguing that it would hurt the Democrats politically.

With the smiling face of Don Obama serving as a front for the
knife-wielding Emanuel and his "legendary intensity" -- as *Rolling Stone*
writer Joshua Green puts it -- one has to wonder: what (or who) else does
the Prez-elect have in store for us?

The answer is: Jane Harman -- as head of the CIA! (If she doesn't get
it, not to worry: she's also up for head of Homeland Security -- and if
she doesn't get that, she's on the short list for National Intelligence

Will somebody go see if Glenn Greenwald is okay? I fear he may have done
something drastic, especially after all that gushing he's done over the
Dear Leader.

Harman has always taken the side of the Bushies when it comes to
eavesdropping: during Gen. Michael Hayden's confirmation hearings for CIA
director, she was against making government eavesdropping an issue. When
the *New York Times* revealed the illegal eavesdropping program authorized
by Bush, she was outraged -- at the *Times*, which she strongly hinted
ought to be prosecuted. She was pro-war, and did her part in spreading
the "bad intel" she now claims to have been fooled by -- declaring not
only that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, but also
purveying the rather far-out notion that al-Qaeda had taken up residence
there prior to the U.S. invasion.

Harman's ambition is matched only by her recklessness: she came up
against the FBI, in 2006, when she was investigated for going a little too
far in her aggressive campaign to retain her seat as head of the House
Intelligence Committee. Apparently she had AIPAC officials and major
Democratic donors personally lobby Pelosi, in return for the promise that
she, Harman, would intercede on behalf of Steve Rosen and Keith Weissman,
two top AIPAC officials currently being prosecuted for stealing U.S. top
secret intelligence and passing it on to Israeli officials. Law
enforcement officials aver hard evidence for this quid pro quo was never
uncovered. I'm hoping, however, that some Republican back-bencher has the
balls to bring it up at her confirmation hearing. Perhaps they could call
Pelosi as a witness.

Combined with the foreign policy views of Dennis Ross, Obama's senior
advisor for Middle East affairs -- who is reportedly up for the National
Security Advisor slot -- what seems to be shaping up is a perfect trifecta
of trouble on the horizon. The old adage that presidents rarely govern in
synch with the way they campaign applies here, and in spades. Change?
Not in the foreign policy realm, buster. Indeed, if any change is
involved, it may well be for the worse.

By the time Obama is through making his appointments, all those Hollywood
liberals over at the HuffPuffPost will be huffing and puffing with
outrage: and, in true Hollywood style, they'll be screaming: "Forget the
honeymoon -- I want a divorce!"

But it will be too late for that. The Big O marches on, with all sorts of
plans for our future, including perhaps "national service," and -- for
sure -- a significant ratcheting-up of the war in Afghanistan. In the
meantime, Iran continues to loom large as an issue.

Just as Obama was claiming his victory, the Iranians were warning us to
stay away from their airspace -- there have apparently been a number of
close calls recently. Also, the Russians announced they were putting
missiles near their border with Poland, to counter the sophisticated
anti-missile "defense" systems put in place by the U.S. and its Eastern
European ally. Adding insult to injury, the official explanation for the
U.S. deployment is that the anti-missile system is there to guard against
an Iranian attack. Whether the Obama-ites buy into this sort of malarkey
or not isn't clear. What is all too obvious, however, is that President
Obama will continue the West's war of words -- and "soft power" -- against
the Russians, a prospect that bodes ill for the cause of peace.

So, you thought you were turning over a whole new leaf for the country
when you marked your ballot for the Dear Leader -- didn't you? Well,
surprise -- surprise!"


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