Boehner and Bibi blindside Barack
Boehner and Bibi blindside Barack
There is a heaping helping of poetic justice in Speaker Boehner’s invitation to Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address Congress on Iran sanctions. Just a week ago, the president stood alongside British PM David Cameron as he confessed to lobbying Senators on Iran sanctions, not uttering a peep about any impropriety in a foreign head of government interfering in domestic politics.
Of course, that didn’t stop press secretary Josh Earnest, who will say anything, from protesting:
Press secretary Josh Earnest said Wednesday afternoon that Boehner's invitation is a breach of normal diplomatic protocol. Typically, a nation's leader would contact the White House before planning a visit to the United States, he said. The White House heard about the invite from Boehner's office, not from the Israelis.
Boehner has made it clear that the stakes are high and Congress is not going to remain silent as Obama lets the Armageddon-seeking mullahs get their hands on the nuclear weapons with which to accomplish their long-stated aim of wiping Israel off the map.
"[Obama's] exact message to us was: 'Hold your fire.' He expects us to stand idly by and do nothing while he cuts a bad deal with Iran. Two words: 'Hell no!'" the House speaker said during his weekly press briefing on Wednesday. "We're going to do no such thing."
Speaking of that deal, Obama is offering up more bargaining chips to the Iranians with no strings attached. Josh Kredo writes in the Free Beacon:
The Obama administration on Wednesday paid $490 million in cash assets to Iran and will have released a total of $11.9 billion to the Islamic Republic by the time nuclear talks are scheduled to end in June, according to figures provided by the State Department.
Today’s $490 million release, the third such payment of this amount since Dec. 10, was agreed to by the Obama administration under the parameters of another extension in negotiations over Tehran’s contested nuclear program that was inked in November.
Iran will receive a total of $4.9 billion in unfrozen cash assets via 10 separate payments by the United States through June 22, when talks with Iran are scheduled to end with a final agreement aimed at curbing the country’s nuclear work, according to a State Department official.
Iran received $4.2 billion in similar payments under the 2013 interim agreement with the United States and was then given another $2.8 billion by the Obama administration last year in a bid to keep Iran committed to the talks through November, when negotiators parted ways without reaching an agreement.
Of course, there are dangers involved for Netanyahu, and I expect him to pull his punches, at least in public. While Obama already loathes him, he would want to avoid giving Obama any excuse to take executive action hostile to Israel. One of the most worrisome issues for supporters of Israel is that the former bipartisan consensus on support for the Jewish state has increasingly become partisan, with the GOP solidly backing and the dominant progressive wing of the Democrats becoming openly hostile. In this, as in other issues, the progs are out of touch with the American public. But the Constitution invests the executive with sweeping powers in military and foreign affairs. Isarel only needs to lose one war to cease existing.