Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Another Day, Another Disingenious AEI 'Scholar'

Why, exactly, does the WaPo give op-ed space (and legitimacy) to disingenious nutcases like the AEI's Michael Rubin?
Bush has been a polarizing figure, but most senators realize that partisanship should never trump national security. In early 2007, evidence mounted that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps was planning terrorist activities in Iraq. An August 2007 National Intelligence Estimate found that "Iran has been intensifying aspects of its lethal support for select groups of Iraqi Shia militants" and that "Explosively formed penetrator (EFP) attacks have risen dramatically." The next month, the Senate considered a bipartisan amendment to designate the Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist organization, an important step to aid nonviolent efforts to deny it funds and financing. Biden was one of only 22 senators to vote against it. "I voted against the amendment to designate Iran's Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization because I don't trust this administration," he said. Distrust of the U.S. president is the nature of politics, but skepticism about foreign dictators and their Brown Shirts is the backbone of judgment.
Look, we know what the game was here, Mike. Our military had every bit of authority it needed to respond to terrorists in Iraq. What it didn't have was the authority to hit Iran. The purpose of this designation was to give them Congressional cover if they should choose to do so, but without the public spotlight that a debate over a formal AUMF resolution would have brought with it.

Because either the Revolutionary Guard is an arm of the Iranian government, or it isn't. Presumably it is. If so, then declare Iran itself a terrorist state, not just the Revolutionary Guard, and if you want to bomb-bomb-Iran, have the guts to say so, and push for an AUMF. Don't dump on better men than yourself because they had the guts to say 'no' to such a chickenshit approach. Don't pretend that this was simply about calling a spade a spade, because it damned sure wasn't.


JJ said...

I always thought these two things were directly related: 1) Cagey AEI scholarship about an "American Empire" (can you say Anglophilia? The sun will never set on the American Empire) and 2) a certain statement by a "senior advisor to Bush."

The AEI has really shown itself to be an atrocious institution.

JJ said...

More on AEI.