Forgive my passion about this, but I find what happened in the United States Congress this morning to be incredible. Yes, I believe it was “so extraordinary as to seem impossible.” The political leader of a foreign country (yes, an ally) stood before the Joint Congress of the United States of America and derided the President of the United States and his administration.
He was there at the invitation of the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, who had gone behind the back of the President of the United States to invite the Prime Minister of Israel to speak against the policy of the President and his advisers. He said they were “wrong” and that their spoken policy on detente with Iran was “wrong.” He spent forty minutes deriding the policy of the President…and received applause from members of Congress.
My incredulity is not with what he had to say. We’ve all heard it before. I find it incredulous that such an event took place, and that leading members of Congress are proud of it. It is not the way we deal with disagreements in Congress.
Shame on those who applauded this spectacle. The President and his administration are perfectly clear about Mr. Netanyahu’s position and have spoken about it numerous times. People in the Congress who disagree with the President on this matter have spoken about it numerous times. The media have presented both positions clearly and forcefully. There is no confusion about the differences of opinion or the consequences of either action.
In due time the proposed accord with Iran would be presented to Congress for its approval or disapproval. That is where the Congress comes into play. But to have invited Mr. Netanyahu to speak before a Joint Session of Congress on this topic, a revered and intentionally occasional honor, and to do it without the consent of the President is blatently political…even for Mr. Netanyahu, whose election day is just two weeks away. Who is in whose pocket?
I find it incredible. It is one more proof that the Congress of the United States is a joke, having strayed far from the standards of this nation in many ways. This event was less about international relations than it was a sign of the disrespect some Members of Congress have for the President. I am inclined to agree with those who say that the President’s bi-racial character has something to do with it.
Photo Credit: Jim Lobe