Sunday, July 5, 2009

Biden Relays an Obamal Bull on Foreign Policy

In the flea circus of Sunday morning blab sessions among politicians, pundits and 'experts', Vice President Joseph Biden dropped a clanger. Asked by George Stephanopoulos about a possible Israeli attack on Iran, he said, "Israel can determine for itself - it's a sovereign nation - what's in their interest and what they decide to do relative to Iran and anyone else." (For example, Lebanon and the Occupied Territories of Palestine.) Biden said further that the US cannot "dictate to another sovereign nation what they can and cannot do."

This directly contravenes the express American position with respect to North Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and of course, Iran. It's a position we all know the US takes; thus, according to the BBC, "White House spokesman Tommy Vietor said Mr Biden was not signalling any change of approach on Iran or Israel."

Some nations, we know, are more equal than others. Israel is the first among equals in timid, sheepish, money-grubbing Washington. So Israel has blanket immunity. Other friends do not. Britain's sovereignty does not give it the right to investigate American war crimes. The US threatened to withhold key intelligence info, purportedly vital to British security, if Britain did not quash any investigations into torture and other crimes at Guantanamo and elsewhere. Spain is certainly under similar or greater pressure.

While this does not mark a major shift in American policy, it does serve as declarative punctuation in the US position on Iran. It marks the official cessation of any US government concern or support for pro-democracy activists in Iran. Iran must be popularly demonized to lay the foundation for American acquiescence in a new round of Israeli war crimes.

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