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July 27, 2016 / 21 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘John McCain’

Sheldon Adelson Endorses Trump, Says He’s ‘Good for Israel’

Friday, May 6th, 2016

Casino magnate and unabashed patron of Bibi Netanyahu Sheldon Adelson said he supports Donald Trump in his quest for the highest office in the land, on the same day, Thursday, when Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan said he does not endorse the presumptive Republican nominee. Adelson told reporters he had spoken to Trump recently, and he thinks that the candidate “will be good for Israel.”

Adelson, who invested at least $100 million in the 2012 election, starting ahead of the primaries (he backed Newt Gingrich), told the NY Times, “Yes, I’m a Republican, he’s a Republican. He’s our nominee. Whoever the nominee would turn out to be, any one of the 17 — he was one of the 17. He won fair and square.”

Speaker Ryan, the most powerful Republican in Congress, told CNN on Thursday, “I’m just not ready to do that at this point. I’m not there right now. And I hope to, and I want to, but I think what is required is that we unify this party.”

Ryan, who is thought by many to be positioning himself for a 2020 run for the White House, also told CNN, “For us to be a successful party, to climb that final hill and win the presidency, we will need a standard-bearer that can unify all Republicans, all conservatives, all wings of our party, and then go to the country with an appealing agenda that can be appealing to independents and disaffected Democrats. And we have work to do one this front, and I think our nominee has to lead in that effort.”

Apparently, as far as Ryan believes, Trump is not that proto-messianic figure.

For his part, Trump said he was “not ready” to support Ryan’s agenda in Congress, which could be a joke or a serious problem, depending on the candidate’s mood.

Both living Republican former presidents, George Bush and George W Bush, said they would not support Trump. There’s a lot of bad blood between the Bushes and Trump, who tortured son and brother Jeb Bush in debate after debate, calling him the “low energy guy.” Former Gov. Mitt Mr Romney and Senator John McCain, the two previous Republican presidential nominees, have stated they would stay away from the convention in Cleveland come July.

Sheldon Adelson’s effort to support Trump is intriguing in light of the fact that the Republican Jewish Coalition, which gets much of its funding from the Jewish billionaire, has announced that its mission this summer would be not so much supporting the top candidate but instead to save Republican hides in election races that could tip Democrat because of Trump’s negative coattails.

JNi.Media

‘Get Over It, Mr. President,’ Says U.S. Senator – Full Transcript

Monday, March 23rd, 2015

A high-ranking U.S. Senator called out President Barack Obama on national television Sunday for holding an endless personal grudge against Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. Senator John McCain (R-AZ), Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, appeared Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union program.

McCain told CNN newswoman Gloria Borger that he is concerned the president’s personal issues with Israel’s prime minister are adversely affecting America’s interests in the foreign policy and national security arenas.

This is how the conversation went:


 
CNN: Senator, are we in a dangerous split here in relations between the United States and Israel?

McCAIN: “Well, I think that’s up to the president of the United States. But there was a free and fair democratic election – the only nation in the region that will have such a thing.

“The president should get over it. Get over your temper tantrum, Mr. President. It’s time that we work together with our Israeli friends and try to stem this tide of ISIS and Iranian movement throughout the region which is threatening the very fabric of the region.

“The least of your problems is what Bibi Netanyahu said during an election campaign. If every politician were held to everything they say in a political campaign obviously that would be a topic of long discussion.

“The point is, the “JV”* as the president described them, are just moving over into Yemen. We see this horrible situation in Libya, we see ISIS (Daesh, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria terror organization) everywhere in the world.

“We see the Iranians now backing the Shia militias in Tikrit, where they’re going to massacre a number of Sunnis, and the guy in charge (there) is a guy named Sulimeini, who … moved thousands of copper-tipped IEDs (improvised explosive devices) into Iraq and killed hundreds of American soldiers and Marines… And (meanwhile) the President of the United States is praising the mullahs and their behavior in the region.

“This is one of the more Orwellian situations I have ever observed,” McCain said, obviously perplexed. Nearly an identical comment was made by another member of Congress just a day or two earlier to describe the president’s inexplicable behavior as well.

CNN: Why is it considered a “temper tantrum” by the president, if Netanyahu rejects the very basis in his campaign rhetoric for decades of US policy heading towards some kind of a peace process? Should the president just pay no attention to that?

McCAIN: “I think the President shouldn’t like it — but thousands are being slaughtered by ISIS. The Iranians have now taken over the major capitals Lebanon, Syria, Beirut and Baghdad. It pales in significance to the situation which continues to erode in the Middle East – and it puts America at risk.

“Look. Bibi’s “rhetoric” concerning an election campaign pales in comparison as to the threat — the direct threat to the United States of America — of ISIS. This is … the President has his priorities so screwed up, that it’s unbelievable.

CNN: He’s also considering signing a UN resolution calling for a Palestinian state. What would be your reaction if he does that and should he even be considering that?

McCAIN: Of course he shouldn’t be considering it. And second of all, if he does that, and it would be approved by the UN, then the United States Congress would have to examine our funding for the United Nations.

“It would be … ah, it would be a violation because the president’s anger over a statement by Bibi, by the prime minister of Israel, it would be, contradict, American policy for the last 10 presidents of the United States.

U.S. Representative Steve Israel of New York, a Democrat, also appeared on the same program. He urged everyone to “drop the drama” and focus on the priorities. “What counts is, are we providing Israel with the critical security equipment technology that they need? And on that, we are,” the Congressman said.

* (Ed note: For the uninitiated, “JV” refers to “junior varsity” and usually is a reference to a high school or B-track college team. Obama’s first such reference was made during and interview for a profile published on Jan. 27, 2014 by The New Yorker Magazine, written by editor David Remnick. Obama referred during the 2012 campaign to the killing of Osama Bin Laden at the time. In Remnick’s words: Obama “also said that Al Qaeda had been ‘decimated.’ I pointed out that the flag of Al Qaeda is now flying in Fallujah, in Iraq, and among various rebel factions in Syria; Al Qaeda has asserted a presence in parts of Africa, too.” Obama responded: “The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant.” Remnick’s was referring in that interview to the conquering of Fallujah on Jan. 3, 2014 by ISIS – which at the time was still referred to as an Al Qaeda-linked offshoot. It was only a day later that Al Jazeera clarified the distinction between the two.)

Hana Levi Julian

McCain – “Get Over Your Temper Tantrum, Mr. President”

Sunday, March 22nd, 2015

In a strongly worded interview on Sundays’s CNN’s “State of the Union“, Senator John McCain said that President Obama should “get over his temper tantrum” following Netanyahu’s victory.

McCain said, “The President has his priorities so screwed up that it’s unbelievable.”

McCain made it clear that if President Obama didn’t use his veto at the UN against a resolution for a Palestinian State, then Congress would reexamine its funding of the UN in response.

McCain discussed the real regional problems, such as ISIS and Iran, and said the President’s personal issues with Netanyahu are getting in the way of important policy issues.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Jordan Bombs ISIS in Syria and Asks US for More Weapons

Thursday, February 5th, 2015

Jordan renewed bombing of suspected Islamic State (ISIS) sites in Syria Thursday, two days after the terrorist organization burned alive a captured Jordanian pilot alive.

King Abdullah has asked the Obama administration for more weapons earlier this week before rushing back to Jordan after the barbaric murder.

He spoke with several U.S. Congressmen in Washington and asked them to break the red tape slowing up delivery of weapons, specifically “more sophisticated air-to-ground weaponry, ground-to-ground weaponry, weapons like anti-tank [and] spare parts,” according to Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) Chairman Sen. John McCain.

He added that committee members from both the Republican Democratic parties agreed to sign a letter to President Barack Obama to fast-track deliveries.

“If the administration doesn’t act right away in response to this letter, which every member is going to sign on this committee, we will then introduce legislation direct to the floor,” according to McCain.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Harriet Sherwood Completely Mischaracterizes Iran Sanctions Bill

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

A March 2nd Guardian report by Harriet Sherwood and Dan Roberts (Binyamin Netanyahu visit will test strains in US-Israel relationship) included the following claim regarding efforts in the US Senate to pass a new Iran sanctions bill:

…the failure of an Aipac-supported effort to pass legislation blocking Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran has led to a reassessment of the fabled ability of its lobbyists to wield a veto over US policy when it comes to matters of Israeli security.

This is a complete mischaracterization of a bill (S.1881 – Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act of 2013) which, by all accounts, is designed to put more pressure on Iran so that they’ll comply with any nuclear agreement that is reached with the six world powers.

The bill (sponsored by Senator Robert Menendez, along with 58 co-sponsors) has been accurately described by multiple media sources:

Washington Post

The measure introduced Thursday, if approved, would impose harsh new sanctions on Iran’s petroleum industry while also threatening U.S. allies and partners with financial restrictions unless they sharply curtail trade with Iran. The sanctions would go into effect if Iran violated the terms of the temporary accord reached last month or if it failed to reach a permanent agreement with world powers in a timely manner.

New York Times

A bipartisan group of senators, defying the White House, introduced a bill on Thursday to impose new sanctions on Iran if it failed to conclude a nuclear agreement, or stick to the terms of its interim deal, with the United States and other major powers.

The bill would seek to drive Iran’s oil exports down to zero and penalize its engineering, mining and construction industries. But the sanctions would not take effect before the six-month term of the interim deal expires, and they could be deferred for up to another six months, at Mr. Obama’s request, if the talks looked promising.

ABC News:

A bipartisan group of 26 senators introduced new legislation today proposing potential sanctions against Iran if the country fails to uphold the P5+1 agreement made last month or if it fails to reach a final agreement to terminate its nuclear weapons program.

The Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act, co-sponsored by Sens. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., and Mark Kirk, R-Ill., which calls for additional reductions in purchases of Iranian petroleum and creates more penalties for parts of the Iranian economy, including engineering, mining and construction.

The bill also provides the administration with up to one year from implementation of the agreement to try to reach a diplomatic solution that would completely end Iran’s nuclear weapons program.

Business Insider

The legislation proposes sanctions in the event that Iran breaches the terms of the interim agreement reached last month in Geneva — or if world powers fail to come to a comprehensive agreement regarding Iran’s nuclear energy program.

Politico:

The sanctions legislation would impose conditional economic penalties on Iran if the country fails to follow through on an interim deal or pulls out of ongoing global negotiations to permanently curtail its nuclear ambitions in return for some sanctions relief.

CNN

Bipartisan legislation was introduced in the U.S. Senate on Thursday that would authorize new economic sanctions on Iran if it breaches an interim agreement to limit its nuclear program or fails to strike a final accord terminating those ambitions.

Clearly, the bill would increase sanctions against Iran only in the event negotiations with the six world powers (P5+1) fail to produce an agreement, or if Iran fails to abide by an agreement.  So, the claim made by Sherwood and Roberts that the bill would “block Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran” is untrue.

Adam Levick

Obama Wants Congress to Delay Action on Syria

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

President Obama asked Congress to delay a vote on whether to strike Syria while he consults with Russia over a deal that would end Syria’s chemical weapons program.

“I have therefore asked the leaders of Congress to postpone a vote to authorize the use of force while we pursue this diplomatic path,” Obama said in a national address Wednesday night.

The Russian option, which emerged over the last two days, would transfer Syrian chemical weapons to international control for destruction. Syrian officials have said they will consider it.

A number of pro-Israel groups have in recent days heeded the White House call to urge Congress to endorse a strike, although it seemed an uphill battle, considering the lack of popular support for such a strike and resistance among a majority of lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives.

These groups and the White House have emphasized the Israel is not the preeminent factor in considering such a strike, and although Obama cited in his speech a threat to U.S. allies, including Israel, should Syrian’s Assad regime become more promiscuous in the use of chemical weapons, he also said that Israel should not fear retaliation in case of a U.S. strike.

“Neither Assad nor his allies have any interest in escalation that would lead to his demise, and our ally, Israel, can defend itself with overwhelming force, as well as the unshakable support of the United States of America,” he said.

In making the moral case for a strike should such a deal fall through, Obama cited the horrors of the 20th century, including the Holocaust, noting that these were premises for international bans on the use of chemical weapons.

“In World War I, American GIs were among the many thousands killed by deadly gas in the trenches of Europe,” he said. “In World War II, the Nazis used gas to inflict the horror of the Holocaust.”

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), a foreign policy leader among Republicans, criticized Obama’s plan to entertain the Russian offer for lacking particulars, but did not dismiss it out of hand.

“Such a plan would require the United States, together with our friends and allies, to immediately introduce a tough U.N. Security Council Resolution that lays out what steps Syria would have to take to give up its chemical weapons, including making a full and accurate declaration of all of its chemical weapons and granting international monitors unfettered access to all sites in Syria that possess these weapons,” McCain said.

JTA

A Coup by Any Other Name Allows US Aid to Continue

Monday, July 8th, 2013

The fact that the White House has decided to continue providing aid to Egypt, despite what has taken place in that country over the past week, is big, big news.

The White House Spokesperson, Jay Carney, with his frequent invocation of the delay weapon known as calling a sticky situation “complicated,” made clear to reporters that the administration will take its time reviewing the matter before making any  final decision on U.S. aid to post-Morsi Egypt.

“I think it would not be in the best interest of the United States to immediately change our assistance programs,” Carney said.

Why is this big news?

Because the overthrow of the Egyptian regime headed by former President Mohamed Morsi is, technically speaking, a coup.  What happened was a coup backed and initiated by mass support for Morsi’s overthrow – technically called a “democratic coup,” but a coup is the correct term, nonetheless.

That matters, because the United States is forbidden, by law, to provide aid to governments which assume power through a coup.

And there are those who immediately pointed out the dangers of supporting any government which takes power as the result of a coup.  Most famously, perhaps, was Senator John McCain (R-AZ).

“Reluctantly, I believe that we have to suspend aid until such time as there is a new constitution and a free and fair election,” McCain said on CBS’s “Face The Nation.”

Other U.S. politicians in leadership positions refused to join McCain in his call to suspend aid, some by refusing to call the ouster of Morsi a “coup,” while others simply refused to address the pertinent legal issue and instead preferred to focus – understandably, if not responsibly – on what would most promote U.S. interests in Egypt: stability.

Egypt’s Ambassador to the U.S., Mohamed Tawfik, consistently insists that the ouster of Morsi – his own boss until just days ago – does not amount to a coup.

In a National Public Radio interview with Tawfik from July 5, the interviewer attempts to corner the ambassador, forcing him to admit that Morsi’s overthrow was a military coup that renders whatever comes next as illegitimate, Tawfik is resolute.  The interviewer paints the Muslim Brotherhood as if it were a benign political organization which has now been thwarted after dutifully following all the rules.

SIEGEL: Ambassador Tawfik, your country, Egypt, has this problem, which is how to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood, a very old and powerful institution in Egyptian life. And one reading of what’s happened this week is, if you’re an active member of the brotherhood, is, well, so much for electoral politics. You can win the presidency. You can win the parliament. You can win a referendum on the constitution that your guys drafted, and it’ll all be negated. Take other means of trying to advance your cause, not elections. Try to subvert the state instead, the way perhaps you used to do.

TAWFIK: That would be a completely wrong way to proceed. What we want to do now is we want to correct the mistakes made by President Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. We want an inclusive process. We want everybody to be included. We want every single Egyptian, including Muslim Brotherhood members, to feel that they own the country. Everybody should enjoy their rights.

We cannot accept to have a situation in which the whole country is run for the interests of a particular group. This was the case with Mubarak, and this – again, unfortunately, Morsi repeated the same mistake. We have to stop making that mistake. This is the time for true democracy. The people of Egypt will accept nothing less.

So the US government is in a bit of a pickle.  Does it withhold support from a leadership backed by the masses of the Egyptian people? And does it do so despite pledging enormous support to Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood government as it giddily dispensed with freedoms and commitments of fairness and diversity so fast that millions took to the streets to boot them out?

Another significant factor the U.S. has to consider, is that the Egyptian economy is so far past being called a train wreck, there are no longer even any railroad ties with which people can make fires to warm themselves.  The only powerhouse industry in Egypt used to be tourism, and the past few years of relentless violence has crippled that industry.  Unless the US provides essential aid, what had been the most stable Arab country, the anchor of the Arab world, may disintegrate into, well, what so much of the rest of the non-oil-rich Arab world looks like.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/a-coup-by-any-other-name-allows-us-aid-to-continue/2013/07/08/

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