Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Lots O' Good Stuff In The Paper Of Record Today

It's so nice when the spirit of bi-partisanship reigns in the nation's capital. Particularly since the Iran deal is likely to go through anyway. Let's hope.

On Tuesday, senators succeeded in getting the White House to back down on its threat to veto a bill requiring congressional review of an Iran deal. They did it the way that most Americans want them to, by working out a compromise that was acceptable to both political parties and to the president.

More on supporting terrorism in the second link. Not the cock sauce one. 

(T)he bill was made more palatable by shortening the review period and by removing a requirement that the White House periodically certify that Iran is not supporting terrorism (though the administration must regularly certify to Congress that Iran is living up to the terms of an agreement).

I find cock sauce makes everything more palatable. I'll send a case to the House Republicans. And a bottle of bubbly to Senator Cardin who has replaced Senator Dino Menendez.

A key Democrat who’s more White House-friendly. That would be the new ranking member on the Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Benjamin Cardin of Maryland. He stepped into the position after Senator Menendez was indicted April 1 in connection with an alleged bribery scheme.

Menendez has been at odds with the White House over Iran negotiations and Cuba policy. Senator Cardin, by contrast, supports Mr. Obama’s Cuba policy and was not an original co-sponsor of the Corker-Menendez bill.

Here's the promised second link to a story on the GOP's actual agenda. Hint: they don't really care about women and gays in Iran. 

So why, with the prospect of a final deal (which still may not be reached) on the horizon, are so many inclined to shift the goal posts on Iran? It may be because, while fear of Iran's nuclear program is real, it's not the only agenda. Just as important for many players is to contain and weaken the Islamic Republic that has held power since 1979. And if sanctions are lifted, Iran has vast oil reserves, a large population, and a history of cross-border commerce that make it likely to become a stronger regional power. 

Shifting goal posts on this matter are nothing new, nor is the conflation with a desire for regime change with sanctions over the nuclear program. In March 2012 Netanyahu said sanctions weren't having an effect on Iran's nuclear program and complained "the regime strengthened its grip in recent elections, despite the sanctions." Now he says the sanctions have "proven effective" and should remain in place.

Bibi is a terrible flip-flopper. He's really just worried that we will leave him for the Iranians. We are a fickle people. 

The third link is to a good news story made even better by the sadness it seems to cause among the wingnutsia. 

There was no surprise in President Obama’s announcement Tuesday that he will remove Cuba from the US list of state sponsors of terrorism.

Mr. Obama’s decision in December to seek a full normalization of relations with Cuba virtually guaranteed that he would move to rescind a designation that places a number of financial and diplomatic restrictions on US interaction with Cuba.

Biggest sad, maybe, goes to Senator Rubio who is rumored to be a foreign policy whiz kid.

Certainly a lively discussion will ensue, with Sen. Marco Rubio, a Republican presidential candidate, promising to move against Cuba's removal. 

I'm sure he can find a reason to leave a country which is not sponsoring terror on the list of state sponsors of terror. It's what Lewis Carroll would have written if he wrote about the US Congress. 

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