Fallows weighs in. Read it. This truly is a critical moment for the US after 9/11. It’s one reason we elected Obama twice. And yet his own party is now trying to sabotage it, when the possibility of a breakthrough – agreed to by all the major powers – is real and as yet not fully tested. Money quote:
Republicans led by Mitch McConnell are pushing for a sanctions bill that is universally recognized (except by its sponsors) as a poison-pill for the current negotiations. Fine; opposing the administration is the GOP’s default position.
But a striking number of Democrats have joined them, for no evident reason other than AIPAC’s whole-hearted, priority-one support for the sanctions bill. The screen clip below is from AIPAC’s site, and here is some political reporting on AIPAC’s role in the sanctions push: NYT, Politico, JTA, Jerusalem Post-JTA, and our own National Journal here and here. Also see Greg Sargent in the Washington Post.
Fallows has a quote from the AIPAC website, the main lobbying group for war. It’s worth reading as well. Fournier, no Obama fan, also gives a great money quote here:
Obama dithered and stumbled on Syria, but his instincts were right: Avoid bloodshed if at all possible. He is acting prudently on Iran. He is the commander in chief, and you’d expect fellow Democrats to give him the benefit of the doubt. Is the Democratic opposition to Obama based on the merits or born of political calculation? If it’s the former, wayward Democrats had better be right, because the stakes are high. If it’s the latter, shame on them and their “antiwar” party.
Amen. None of these Democratic Senators are prepared to give the president the lee-way to try to avoid another disastrous and unwinnable war in the Middle East. Their sanctions bill would kill the only alternative to the war AIPAC wants. Democrats in New York and New Jersey should let Schumer and Menendez and Booker know that sabotaging their own president and the only potential for peace is inexcusable. That goes for Michael Bennet’s inexplicable betrayal as well.
(Photo: U.S. President Barack Obama walks with Sen. Michael Bennet toward Marine One to depart the White House November 6, 2013 in Washington, DC. By Mark Wilson/Getty Images.)