Friday, February 02, 2007

One Senator Grows A Spine

Naturally, the moment after I post saying "When is Congress going to stand up to this idiot warmonger?" I run across this article in the New York Times which is an interview with new Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV). In it, Rockefeller "sharply criticized the Bush administration's increasingly combative stance toward Iran, saying that White House efforts to portray it as a growing threat are uncomfortably reminiscent of rhetoric about Iraq before the American invasion of 2003." Rockefeller said the White House "was building a case against Tehran even as U.S. intelligence agencies still know little about either Iran's internal dynamics or its intentions in the Middle East."

The Times also quotes the senator as saying, "To be quite honest, I'm a little concerned that it's Iraq again. [...] This whole concept of moving against Iran is bizarre."

Welcome to the Party, Senator. Now let's see how many of your brethren you can bring with you.

Rockefeller said he believed President Bush was getting poor advice from advisers who argue that an uncompromising stance toward the regime in Tehran will serve U.S. interests. "I don't think that policymakers in this administration particularly understand Iran," he said.

The comments of Rockefeller reflect the mounting concerns being voiced by other influential Democrats, including the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, and Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware, about the Bush administration's approach to Iran. The Democrats have warned that the administration is moving toward a confrontation with Iran when the United States has neither the military resources nor the support among U.S. allies and members of Congress to carry out such a move.

As one of only a handful of lawmakers with access to the most classified intelligence about the threat from Tehran, Rockefeller's views carry particular weight. He has also historically been more tempered in his criticism of the White House on national security issues than some of his Democratic colleagues.

Rockefeller was biting in his criticism of how Bush has dealt with the threat of Islamic radicalism since the Sept. 11 attacks, saying he believed that the campaign against international terrorism was "still a mystery" to the president. "I don't think he understands the world," Rockefeller said. "I don't think he's particularly curious about the world. I don't think he reads like he says he does."
I sure hope that Rockefeller and his fellow Democrats aren't going to let Bush start another war. Trouble is, I don't know how they can stop him short of pre-emptive impeachment of both Bush AND his Vice President, and that will NEVER happen.