Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam.
“I think it's a bad deal and I've said so for several weeks now. I think we need to put country ahead of party,” Senator Jim Webb said. "It troubles me when I see all this debate about whether this is disloyalty to the president or the Democratic Party.”
Webb is a Democrat and he joins a number of other Democrats in criticizing a bad deal that even Obama admitted will allow Iran to get nuclear weapons after a number of years.
Obama and his cronies have pursued an extraordinary campaign of vilification against Republicans and Democrats who dared to question the deal that will allow Iran to upgrade its nuclear program and obtain ICBM missiles, that will fund its terrorist activities around the world and even lift sanctions on terrorists like Anis Naccache, who engaged in nuclear proliferation, over European protests.
The apocalyptic rhetoric out of the White House is meant to shut down the debate. Threats of war and accusations of treason are not the language of an administration that is confident in its own arguments.
Democrats and Republicans have been accused of treason, of warmongering and of making common cause with Iranian leaders who chant “Death to America” by this administration and its allies. These accusations are hysterical, unhinged and contradict themselves. If you take them literally, Obama and his allies are accusing critics of both wanting war with America’s enemies and collaborating with them.
Elected officials who don’t want money going to terrorists are traitors. Anyone who doesn’t want to escalate the conflict in the region by enabling Iran’s arms buildup is a warmonger. And those who think that Obama’s deal with a regime that chants “Death to America” is flawed are aligned with the enemy.
There’s so much abuse coming out of the White House that its officials can’t even coordinate a coherent smear campaign that makes any kind of sense. Senator Schumer is being tarred as a chickenhawk traitor who voted for the Iraq War and secretly works for Israel, but Senator Webb is a Vietnam veteran who was wounded in the war and whose son served in Iraq, but who opposed the Iraq War.
Is he also a chickenhawk traitor or is Obama Inc. going to assemble a different smear for every dissenting Democrat? If so it had better get started because the majority of the country opposes it.
Only 52 percent of Democrats support the deal. Are all the rest traitors too? Is the Democratic Party going to have purge most of its own treasonous base and only retain those fully loyal to Obama?
It is not treason to disagree with Obama. It is not treason for the Senate to assert its rightful powers under the Constitution. It is certainly not treason for the Senate to stand with the majority of Americans who oppose an agreement that will allow a terrorist state to control a deadly nuclear program.
America is not a monarchy. Dissent is not treason. It can be the highest form of patriotism. And if being pro-Israel is treason, then how are we to describe Biden and Kerry’s ties to the Iran Lobby?
We have seen this before. This is an administration that fights ruthlessly against any changes to deeply flawed plans even when they undermine the success of the policy they are meant to implement. That’s what happened with ObamaCare and the administration was forced to illegally tinker with it to try and make it work. It would apparently like to do that with the Iran deal, which is one more reason to distrust all the empty assurances. The deal that the Senate will vote on is not the deal that we will get.
Democrats face a choice between following Senator Webb’s sensible advice and putting country first or putting Obama first.
And that’s what this is really about.
Obama has hoarded unprecedented amounts of authority leading to constant power struggles with Congress, the Supreme Court and even within the White House. Obama is currently quarreling with his own Secretary of Defense and would like Congress to authorize him to free Gitmo terrorists without the approval of his own appointee. Is Obama’s own Secretary of Defense also a traitor?
Every former Secretary of Defense has been critical of Obama’s policies.
Obama fired Chuck Hagel for exactly the reason he is now feuding with his current Secretary of Defense. Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said that the “the only military matter, apart from leaks, about which I ever sensed deep passion on his part was 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.’”
Former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta blamed Obama for the rise of ISIS. “The White House was so eager to rid itself of Iraq that it was willing to withdraw rather than lock in arrangements that would preserve our influence and interests,” he wrote.
Was every man who served as Secretary of Defense under Obama a worthless traitor or was he the problem all along? Has putting Obama’s ego ahead of country been bad for our influence and interests?
Senate Democrats are on the cusp of a post-Obama era. They will be held accountable for what they do now, then. Five or ten years from now, no one will remember the angry threats from MoveOn, but they will remember that Senate Democrats put the ego of a lame duck politician ahead of their country.
When Iran tests its first nuclear bomb, Obama will be giving paid speeches and the cameras will be on them. They will be asked why they allowed this to happen. The blame for it will fall on them.
As the White House and its allies hurl accusations of treason at anyone who points out the flaws of the Iran nuclear sellout, Democrats must decide whether they are loyal to America or to Obama.
Do they put country first or party first?
Webb, Schumer and Menendez have set a fine example for other Senate Democrats by pointing out the flaws of the deal and how it needs to be improved. All of them have far more policy experience than Obama or his staffers, many of whom were jumped up from driving buses or writing speeches, to taking on the foreign policy of a nation. Are these men committing treason by speaking out against the deal?
Are they traitors? Or are those who put Obama and the Democratic Party ahead of the country betraying their duty? Did the majority of voters, who oppose the deal, elect them to rigidly follow the leader or to use their minds and experiences to represent their interests and look out for them?
We are not a nation of parties. We are a nation of people.
Republicans or Democrats, we know that when Iran’s leaders chant, “Death to America”, they mean it. We remember the Iran Hostage Crisis. We remember the bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut.
We know that a deal that gives the regime responsible for these atrocities a zero breakout time to a nuclear bomb is a bad deal for America. And supporting a bad deal just because it’s Obama’s bad deal is a betrayal of our national security, a betrayal of our soldiers in harm’s way and a betrayal of our future.
It’s time for Senate Democrats to stop fearing accusations of disloyalty to Obama and put loyalty to their country first.