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Senator who spearheaded letter to Iran got $1 Million from Kristol's 'Energency C'tee for Israel'

 
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2015 09:10 am
Senator who spearheaded letter to Iran got $1 million from Kristol’s ‘Emergency C’tee for Israel’
US Politics Philip Weiss on March 10, 2015 51 Comments
Bill Kristol, at Rightweb Bill Kristol, at Rightweb

The U.S. media have been sadly incurious about the origins of yesterday’s unprecedented Open Letter of 47 Republicans to the Iranian leadership seeking to block the president’s likely deal with Iran. The press has portrayed the letter as the work of Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, a 37-year-old freshman senator so new to the limelight that the New York Times got his name wrong on first impression. But as a Times commenter writes, “Does anyone really believe the ‘freshman senator from Arkansas’ wrote the letter? No.”

The media are all over the unprecedented nature of the letter — which informs Iranian hardliners that Obama’s likely deal with Iran is a “mere executive agreement.” Chris Matthews and Chris Hayes and Michael Steele on MSNBC last night all expressed outrage or surprise. Paul Waldman at the Washington Post calls the letter “stunning” and “appalling.” But apart from a passing reference to neocons from Matthews, no one is looking under the hood.

I don’t know who wrote the letter, but I can tell you whose fingerprints are on it: the only folks who are supporting it publicly, the hard-right Israel lobby. Even as Cotton himself splutters on national television, rightwing lobby groups are the main voices out there defending the letter.

Like Bill Kristol of the Emergency Committee for Israel:

Cotton open letter: “Just so you know, we’re a constitutional democracy. Congress (or next president) has a say.” Dem response: Hysteria.

J Street’s Dylan Williams fingers Bill Kristol for writing the letter:

Who gave @SenTomCotton & others the awful idea for the Iran letter? Seems like Sarah Palin-for-VP-level bad advice doesn’t it @BillKristol ?

There’s a reason for Williams’s suspicion. Kristol’s Emergency Committee for Israel gave Tom Cotton nearly $1 million in his race for the Senate just five months ago, Eli Clifton reported. “Cotton received $960,250 in supportive campaign advertising in the last month.” (Thanks to Kay24 in comments).

Cotton also got $165,000 from Elliott Management Paul Singer’s hedge fund. Singer is the billionaire who is trying to stop Obama’s Iran talks (Clifton’s reporting again). He funds the Israel Project too– Josh Block’s efforts.

Josh Block has been standing up for the letter on Twitter. And the rightwing Israel Project offered support for the letter in an email last night:

Many analysts believe that without congressional approval, if a final deal with Iran is reached, it will not outlast President Barack Obama’s tenure as President of the United States. Without congressional involvement, the Obama administration would strike a deal with Iran through executive action which could signal to the Iranians that the “deal would be with the President alone,” writes Harvard Law School Professor Jack Goldsmith. He continues, “The bottom line, then, is that any deal struck by President Obama with Iran will probably appear to the Iranians to be, at best, short-term and tenuous. And so we can probably expect, at best, only a short-term and tenuous commitment from Iran in return.”
When it comes to the Iran negotiations, the Obama administration says that they only see a role for Congress when it comes to sanctions. If a final agreement is reached, they will eventually look to Congress for the lifting of sanctions. The White House said that Congress has had a role to play when it has drafted and passed the sanctions legislation that President Obama subsequently signed into law. The White House does not believe that an agreement with Iran over its nuclear program would require congressional approval.
The letter has gotten support from David Frum, the former Bush aide who wrote of taking on Saddam Hussein, “It’s victory or Holocaust.” On twitter:

“Time after time, Obama has told Congress to go to hell. Now Congress is telling Obama to go to hell.”

The Republican Jewish Coalition, a pro-Israel group, has also supported the letter.

Josh Block used to work at AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, and is sometimes thought to speak for AIPAC. AIPAC is staying silent, while pushing further sanctions on Iran.

But former AIPAC staffer MJ Rosenberg has explained why he believes AIPAC penned the letter. As he tweeted today:

Nothing happens on Capitol Hill related to Israel unless and until Howard Kohr (AIPAC chief) wants it to happen. Nothing.


- See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/03/israel-fingerprints-republican#sthash.vsbNU3Id.dpuf
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Type: Question • Score: 9 • Views: 7,700 • Replies: 105

 
Frank Apisa
 
  2  
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2015 11:23 am
@korkamann,
Whoever conceived of it...or wrote it, Korkamann...the letter was an insult to the American people...no matter that some of those people will applaud it.

It's done...no taking it back.

I can only hope the Republican Party pays a huge price for this disgusting happening.

InfraBlue
 
  4  
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2015 12:38 pm
@korkamann,
Quote:
Senator who spearheaded letter to Iran got $1 million from Kristol’s ‘Emergency C’tee for Israel’

Ain't democracy wonderful?
korkamann
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2015 04:12 pm
@InfraBlue,
Quote:

Ain't democracy wonderful?


Oh the irony of the situation is uncanny. The artless junior senator of Arkansas did not know the can of worms he would open with the ill-conceived letter, a moronic act, but the senior John McCain certainly should have known better. One can only think McCain is still carrying the grudge for losing the presidency in '08 to Obama. But the entire exertion is treasonous and reminds us there is no level the rightwing Republicans will not stoop to in their animosity against this president, to try and make him fail.

The ill-written letter makes the US look confused and dysfunctional.

It's almost unbelievable that 47 Republicans would write to the Ayatollah in Iran, a US' enemy, to try and undermine US policy by Obama! Wow! the blowback against these 47 has been unrelenting with the rightwing Post calling them "traitors."
0 Replies
 
korkamann
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2015 05:20 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Quote:

I can only hope the Republican Party pays a huge price for this disgusting happening.


They already are paying a price. The 47 Repukes have shot themselves in the foot because they look like bungling incompetents who don't know their as*hole from their mouth. If the situation were not so consequential, it would be rib-tickling funny. What a bunch of jackasses.
0 Replies
 
Olivier5
 
  2  
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2015 05:54 pm
I'm looking forward to Iran's official response. I expect a masterpiece of diplomatic sarcasm... Smile
izzythepush
 
  0  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 03:23 am
@korkamann,
It's corruption pure and simple, and anyone with any modicum of decency would resign forthwith. Unfortunately it seems his supporters don't have a problem with corruption, just affordable healthcare, and civil rights for minorities.
korkamann
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 05:39 am
@Olivier5,
G.O.P. Letter by Republican Senators Is Evidence of ‘Decline,’ Iranian Says
By THOMAS ERDBRINKMARCH 12, 2015

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Thursday in Tehran. He expressed support for Iran’s negotiators.

TEHRAN — Iran’s highest leader issued a sharp response Thursday to a letter to the country’s leadership by Republican lawmakers, deriding it as an indication that Washington is “disintegrating” from within.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, said the letter warning that any nuclear deal could be scrapped by a new president was “a sign of a decline in political ethics and the destruction of the American establishment from within.” The statement was posted on his website.

Ayatollah Khamenei, who will have the final say in Iran over a nuclear deal, characterized the open letter written by 47 Republican senators on Monday as a reflection of Washington’s decadence.

“All countries, according to the international norms, remain faithful to their commitments even after their governments change, but the American senators are officially announcing that at the end of the term of their current government, their commitments will be considered null and void,” Ayatollah Khamenei wrote.

Most surprising perhaps was the fact that Ayatollah Khamenei appeared to continue to support the nuclear talks, despite the Republicans’ threats that they, or a possible Republican president in 2017, would try to undo any deal made.

Ayatollah Khamenei has often expressed doubts about American intentions and sincerity in the negotiations, but on Thursday he supported Iran’s negotiating team, as he has frequently in recent weeks. Speaking to members of the Assembly of Experts, a council that theoretically has the constitutional authority to appoint and dismiss the supreme leader, he called them “good and caring people, who work for the country.”

In Iran, as in the United States, conservatives tend to distrust the other side in the negotiations and are thought to prefer that the whole effort come to nothing. But as long as the supreme leader is voicing support for the talks, criticism from the hard-liners will be muted.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/13/world/middleeast/ayatollah-ali-khamenei-criticizes-republicans-letter-on-iran-nuclear-talks.html?contentCollection=world&action=click&module=NextInCollection&region=Footer&pgtype=article
korkamann
 
  2  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 06:00 am
@izzythepush,
Quote:
It's corruption pure and simple, and anyone with any modicum of decency would resign forthwith. Unfortunately, it seems his supporters don't have a problem with corruption, just affordable healthcare, and civil rights for minorities.


Yes, it is in part corruption, but what is most highlighted is the punitive need to humiliate this president on the world stage, to make him suffer for having the audacity to become president when the US presidency is collectively in the minds of ignoramuses and the troglodytes, not for minorities. It is this deep-seated retaliatory need to abuse president Obama who dared to grasp the brass ring when any white person was believed to be more worthy even if as stupid as GWB or all those climate deniers, or those who believe the earth is only 700 years old and there is no such thing as evolution.
izzythepush
 
  2  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 06:16 am
@korkamann,
It's not working, Western leaders still line up to be photographed with Obama. Nobody, other than Netanyahu, wants to be associated with the far right extremists in the Republican party, it would be political suicide.
Olivier5
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 06:58 am
@korkamann,
I saw this, but it's different. It's a free-flowing commentary from Khameini. What I am talking about is the official response letter. Maybe Iran won't lower herself to the US repukes level and will simply ignore their letter, but I wish they crafted a formal response. That could be loads of fun.
0 Replies
 
revelette2
 
  2  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 07:25 am


Luckily if you click on the link below, you can click the CC icon. Just saying.
0 Replies
 
izzythepush
 
  2  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 10:01 am
Quote:
WASHINGTON -- In the latest display of crumbling Israeli-Palestinian relations, the Palestinian Authority’s Foreign Ministry called for Avigdor Lieberman, Israel's minister of foreign affairs, to be arrested following Lieberman's remarks about decapitating Israeli Arab citizens, who account for roughly 20 percent of Israel’s population.

The PA’s demand is a response to Lieberman's recent declaration that Israeli Arabs who are disloyal to Israel should be beheaded. Speaking at an elections rally on Sunday, Lieberman said: "Those who are against us, there's nothing to be done -- we need to pick up an ax and cut off his head... Otherwise we won't survive here."

Lieberman -- whose job, as described by the Israeli Foreign Ministry website, is to implement Israel’s foreign policy and promote cultural relations -- is no stranger to controversy.

As the founder and leader of the far-right nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party, Lieberman has long advocated for a “peace plan” that would involve paying Israeli Arabs to relocate within the boundaries of a future Palestinian state. That state, in Lieberman’s vision, would be drawn in such a way as to exclude minority Israeli populations in the West Bank and encompass majority Arab populations in Israel, with the goal of creating two ethnically homogenous states.

In January, Lieberman unveiled his party’s new campaign slogan, “Ariel for Israel; Umm el-Fahm for Palestine," referring to the large Israeli settlement in the West Bank and a majority-Arab city in Israel.

“There is no reason for Umm el-Fahm to be a part of Israel,” Lieberman said at the rally on Sunday.

"Citizens of the state of Israel who raise a black flag on Nakba Day -- from my perspective, they can leave, and I'm very happily willing to donate them to Abu Mazen," he said, referring to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

In spite of the PA's demands, Lieberman is unlikely to face prosecution for his incendiary remarks. However, polls suggest that his party will take a hit in Israel's March 17 elections.

Yisrael Beiteinu currently holds the second largest number of seats in the Knesset and is a part of the coalition government led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party. With one week left until elections, Haaretz polls project that Yisrael Beiteinu will fall from 13 parliamentary seats to just five. That would put Lieberman’s party behind the Joint Arab List, the alliance of Arab-majority parties, which is expected to secure 13 seats in the upcoming elections.

On Monday, Joint Arab List candidate Ahmad Tibi compared Lieberman to the Islamic State and demanded a police investigation into his remarks.

Tibi vowed that his party "will remove racists' and fascists' heads only through democratic means -- bringing as many [Knesset] seats as possible and active participation in the election," according to The Jerusalem Post.

"The stronger we are, the weaker the Jewish Islamic State will be," Tibi reportedly said.

Lieberman has already announced that he would not join a government led by Isaac Herzog and Tzipi Livni’s leftist Zionist Union party. The Zionist Union and Likud have been polling as the two leading parties in the past several weeks, with Herzog’s party currently leading Netanyahu’s by one seat in polls.


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/10/avigdor-lieberman-behead-arabs_n_6839820.html
0 Replies
 
korkamann
 
  3  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 12:52 pm
@korkamann,
Quote:
It is this deep-seated retaliatory need to abuse president Obama who dared to grasp the brass ring when any white person was believed to be more worthy even if as stupid as GWB or all those climate deniers, or those who believe the earth is only 700 years old and there is no such thing as evolution.


Let me add a personal commentary to my above statement. PM Netanyahu must not be allowed to walk away freely without closer assessment, after all, it was his visit I believe that inspired the sending of said letter.

When the PM came to the US to address the US congress he did so without following diplomatic protocol, that is, consulting the President of the US....that was a wrong move! It's not that the Israeli PM is paranoid (I think he's perfectly rational), but he is in the process of running for reelection and he sought to use the US congress as a utility in one of his ads to influence the Israeli voters. It was the Jewish-American groups via of Bill Kristol who paid $1 million dollars to Tom Cotton, freshman senator from Arkansas, along with 46 more Repukes, to send the treasonous letter to the Ayatollah during the US and its allies time of sensitive negotiations with Iran.

Netanyahu seemingly does not understand what he has done, or does he and just doesn't care? Surely the Israeli PM did not count on this horrendous blowback which might have ripple effects back in Israel. The US must first try to be successful in these talks with Iran and not put Israel's political concerns before that of America. If America is on track and prosperous in these talks then it's in a better position to protect its client state, Israel. But that's not what bothers Bibi Netanyahu. He's politically exercising and seeking to remain in power by using Israel's powerful influence over the US congress to thwart any progress President Obama might achieve along with his European allies. He is trying to keep the Israeli people in a state of fear and saying he alone is the only one who will keep them safe. Netanyahu realizes Israel cannot take on Iran alone; it would need the powerful military capability of the US to do so; therefore, Israel would want the US to go to war with Iran. That is a No-No! The American people are simply tired of war.
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 08:43 pm
@korkamann,
No no Korkamann. 10,000 years old. Ask any bible thumper and they can prove with their bible.
glitterbag
 
  2  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2015 09:35 pm
@korkamann,
Don't underestimate Bibi, he knew exactly what he was doing. His concerns are not about the US, he believes US protection will always be intact. However, he participated in a stunt aimed at weakening the stature of the US. What I don't understand, is if the Republicans hope to regain the White House, why would they sabotage the appearance of unity and then inherit the tarnished label of former leader of the free world. The rest of the World's countries have been around much longer than the US, the senators who signed that letter to Iran apparently do not understand what their role is in Congress. Frankly, it's mutinous, Foreign Ministers represent their country's interest when dealing with the US. The US is represented by the State Department. Does anyone really expect the foreign ministers to visit each and every member of Congress, or stand before an investigative committee of the house or senate? These elected representatives are behaving like war lords. I'm deeply offended that the people who are sitting in Congress think it's ok to make up the rules on the fly.

Everybody complains about 'inside the beltway' or the Washington culture, So maybe it's time for all fifty states to start sending honest brokers to our seat of Government. Take some responsibility and get off your asses and actually vote. We need to put a stop to these opportunists playing to the lowest common denominator.
Moment-in-Time
 
  2  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2015 09:56 am
@glitterbag,
Quote:

Don't underestimate Bibi, he knew exactly what he was doing.


I do not underestimate Bibi not even a wee bit.

[/quote]His concerns are not about the US, he believes US protection will always be intact. However, he participated in a stunt aimed at weakening the stature of the US.[/quote]

Tis true, Israel does appear to take America for granted and as long as AIPAC continue to fund these politicians they will be puppets for Israel. We see US' values displayed on the national and international stage. This is one of the reasons Muslims hate Americans so....because of the double standard of justice.

However, Glitter, this is where you and I differ. Yes, to a small degree, Netanyahu’s actions did vitiate the US image but deliberately damaging America in itself was not his direct goal. There is a great deal of tension between PM Bibi and President Obama and the two of them simply do not like each other. Bibi is unable to manipulate Obama the way he possibly could have done with Mitt Romney and the Republicans whom AIPAC money controls. Netanyahu’s objective was twofold....he wanted to disgrace and spitefully humiliate President Obama for not listening to him on Iran and he was using the US congress as a backdrop feature in his campaign ads back in Israel. Bibi wanted the mental picture of the US congress applauding him repeatedly shown to the Israeli public to enhance his image as the right man for the job!

Quote:

What I don't understand, is if the Republicans hope to regain the White House, why would they sabotage the appearance of unity and then inherit the tarnished label of former leader of the free world.


You don't quite get it do you, glitter? The right-wing Repukes wish to NULLIFY Obama's presidency. One way to do this is to try and make him fail on the international stage by stubbornly obstructing him at every term and trying to interfere with the sensitive talks between Iran, the US and our European allies, including Russia. The president of the US possess executive privileges which belong to the president of the US exclusively. The Repukes are claiming the President has to discuss this privilege with them before employing said powers. Whenever Obama chooses to use them, the right-wingers contend he's acting like a Monarch or emperor. The Repukes have refused to put a jobs' bill on the table for infrastructure repairs, or any other kind of jobs bill that would help reduce unemployment among the American people; they are willing to hurt the American citizen just to spite this president. I have encountered picayune minds before but never so many collectively; I find the Republicans actions so objectionable and offensive that one is reminded of highly venomous deadly reptiles at an early stage of development - handle them at your own peril. The Tea Party which has consumed the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, and seemingly the majority leader of the senate, Mitch McConnell, is so unspeakably evil that I cannot think of anything humane to say about that group except it now seem to have conquered the entire Establishment Republican Party and this is destructive to our government. Remember last year when these "whacko-birds" shut down the government because Obama refused to rescind the law of the land, the ACA?

Quote:
The rest of the World's countries have been around much longer than the US, the senators who signed that letter to Iran apparently do not understand what their role is in Congress. Frankly, it's mutinous, Foreign Ministers represent their country's interest when dealing with the US. The US is represented by the State Department. Does anyone really expect the foreign ministers to visit each and every member of Congress, or stand before an investigative committee of the house or senate?


The 47 repukes who signed the letter committed a treasonous act!

Quote:
These elected representatives are behaving like war lords. I'm deeply offended that the people who are sitting in Congress think it's ok to make up the rules on the fly.


They are acting like a bunch of venomous as*Holes, with spitefulness coursing through their veins. Today's GOP represent the dark side of humanity. They come across as the kind of people who lynched black men in the 50s for fun on a Saturday afternoon picnic.

Quote:
Take some responsibility and get off your asses and actually vote. We need to put a stop to these opportunists playing to the lowest common denominator.


I certainly could not agree more. One day, people will begin to comprehend how extremely important mid-term elections are and how desperately each vote is needed if there is to be a transformation toward decent governmental governing. I don't want to wait until the Latinos, the fastest growing minority demographic take over within a couple of decades; I would like to see these fu*kers taken out beginning in November 2015.
revelette2
 
  3  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2015 10:18 am
@Moment-in-Time,
Quote:
You don't quite get it do you, glitter? The right-wing Repukes wish to NULLIFY Obama's presidency


Was my thought exactly, they could care less about the office of the President of the United States as long as they delegitimized this president any and every chance they get, there is no low too low they will go to do it either. I agree entirely with every sentiment you expressed in this post.
Frank Apisa
 
  3  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2015 11:26 am
The disgusting riffraff that has become the Republican Party should hang its head in shame. But it does not know shame.

I only hope the American public realizes what trash resides in that party...and gives them the electoral trashing they deserve.
0 Replies
 
Moment-in-Time
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2015 12:00 pm
@revelette2,

Quote:
Was my thought exactly, they could care less about the office of the President of the United States as long as they delegitimized this president any and every chance they get, there is no low too low they will go to do it either. I agree entirely with every sentiment you expressed in this post.


Why thank you, Rev. Coming from someone like you so above board, honest and direct, I feel complimented.
0 Replies
 
 

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