Senate Democrats Vote for War With Iran

That’s right. Senate – Democrats – Voted – For – War – With – Iran!

On Wednesday, the Senate voted 97-0 for an amendment written by Joe Bomb Iran Lieberman, whose position on Iran is identical to Dick Cheney’s.

The amendment repeats the flimsy charges made by the Cheney administration earlier this year that the Iranian government is arming Iraq’s Shia militias with explosively-formed projectile explosives that have killed almost 200 American troops and that Shia Iran is giving a safe haven to Sunni extremist Al-Qaeda (even though AQ is blowing up Iraqi Shias left and right). These are the same charges that the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Statt, Peter Pace, distanced himself from, claiming that the evidence did not support the contention that Iran’s government either supplied or was complicit in the supply of these weapons to militias in Iraq. (Pace’s will not be renominated for the position, by the way.)

The amendment states that “the murder of members of the United States Armed Forces by a foreign government or its agents is an intolerable act against the United States,” and demands the government of Iran “take immediate action” to end all forms of support it is providing to Iraqi militias. It also mandates a regular report on Iran’s anti-US activity in Iraq .

Senior Democrat Carl Levin successfully inserted a small change to Lieberman’s text stating that, “Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize or otherwise speak to the use of Armed Forces against Iran.” If you’re thinking, “phew! That’ll stop a war on Iran!” think again. The Iraq Liberation Act passed by Congress in 1998 and signed by Bill Clinton had the same text. And we all know the story of how that text stopped the invasion of Iraq .

Charging Iran with killing US troops has nothing to do with the facts. It’s about beating the war drums and trying to convince Americans that in order to “protect our troops” the US must bomb Iran.

The unanimity of the vote is alarming. Hillary and Obama voted for it. Only three sat out on the vote, including Senator Vitt who can’t be bothered to Iran-bash in the middle of his Religious Right-family-values-meets-hookers-and-diapers political meltdown.

During the Vietnam war, it was obvious that the Vietnamese were killing American soldiers with bullets and bombs with “from Russia with love” or “made in China” written all over them. These weapons were delivered by the boatload by Chinese and Russian ships sent their by their respective governments. Yet no one in Congress declared that this was “murder” by “foreign governments and their agents” and even Nixon, rabid anti-Communist that he was, never threatened Russia or China if they failed to “take immediate action” to halt these shipments.

Then again, those governments had armies and nukes powerful enough to do real damage if the US was stupid enough to attack them. These days, the US picks fights with tin pot dictators of impoverished Third World nations (Noriega, Hussein, Milosevic, the Taliban, Kim Jong-Il, Ahmadinejad) while screaming they are “the next Hitler.”

If the war on Iraq was a cakewalk, an attack on Iran would be. It’s got a bigger population, a bigger economy, a fairly strong military, and they’ve probably studied how Hezbollah fought the Israelis to a stalemate last year. The US Navy is so cramped for room to manuever its 130 or so ships in the Persian Gulf that they regularly radio the Iranian navy to notify them about impending ship movements, imagine how it will be once that third aircraft carrier arrives and if Iran fires thousands of missiles at these ships to overwhelm their hi-tech defenses. Plus, Iraq’s Shia won’t take kindly to the mass slaughter of their brethren next door by the same nation that refuses to leave Iraq and funds Israel’s slow motion genocide of the Palestinians.

Make no mistake. The US is on a collision course with Iran. Both Democrats and Republicans are hell-bent on rolling back Iran’s growing power and influence on the region, even if it means a war that will cost thousands or tens of thousands of lives. The vote on Wednesday is just more proof of that.

Pham Binh is an activist and recent graduate of Hunter College in NYC. His articles have been published at Znet, Asia Times Online, Dissident Voice, and Monthly Review Online. He can be reached at: Read other articles by Pham, or visit Pham's website.

9 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. Max Shields said on July 15th, 2007 at 10:37am #

    We need a third party – progressive social democratic party or green, but we need to get an alternative in front of people or this is just a worthless cause of empire collapse.

    A collapse may be precipitice but, like war, there are unintended consequences. The positive consequence could be to take this terrorist state out of business.

    Since the CIA have been unleashed starting in 2001 to do whatever it takes, you can bet that the US has already begun the “intervention”. Next will come the missiles. And while the news of North Korea’s first step to “dismantle” their “arsenal” is front page news – WHERE IS THIS SENATE VOTE?

  2. Feral Grognard said on July 15th, 2007 at 12:09pm #

    Laughing uncontrollably at this pathetic distort of history and reality in another “me-ocractic” dream losing.

    You just cannot fix stupid and this, for what ever it is supposed to convey, is the unquestionable evidence of that universal axiom.

  3. Deadbeat said on July 15th, 2007 at 12:39pm #

    Take a look at what happened to the Greens. In 2004 you had the Green infiltrated by “Demo-Greens” that did whatever they could to weaken the ticket. Once such hypocrite was Medea Benjamin and all of those “foundation” whores who put up a facade of progressiveness when in reality are reactionary functionaries.

    With many American not very politically astute it will be very easy for these functionaries to disrupt any 3rd party. And with the adherence to ZIONISM on the left you can easily see how the peace and anti-war movement got weaken to the point that it is virtually non-existent.

    In order for a third party to really become strong you’ll have to confront racism and especially Zionism on the left in order to wake up the American people.

  4. lockie said on July 15th, 2007 at 9:53pm #

    well it seems to me iran is medeling in all the mid east . for what complete dominatoin . so it can dictate to the whole wold . an bring islamic values acros the globe . wake up west take them out before they take us

  5. Hue Longer said on July 16th, 2007 at 1:22am #


  6. Hue Longer said on July 16th, 2007 at 1:23am #

    that is, the comment board, Pham…another good article

  7. SToned Genious said on July 16th, 2007 at 5:42pm #

    dont contact the cia because of my post. its usless they probably already have seen it in fort mead(nsa) ….the cia is a couple of miles from my house (langly). so if you send them spooks i will end up insulting their inteligence and yours allll over again. (they probably already know me and dont give a fuck and are embarrassed about the facts i pull out anyway)
    so please dont waste your time
    i have no connections to any associations, or think tanks, or cells, or religious affiliations. (im taoist)
    so fuck your snitching bitch ass.

    pussy i own you.
    : )
    just pray i dont make my own media company. (which i am) 😛
    ( just on final cut pro, protools, combustion, and flash)
    (mother fucker)

  8. Hue Longer said on July 17th, 2007 at 5:17am #

    I’d love to force Christopher Hitchins to co-author a book with SToned Genious

  9. Mike McNiven said on August 30th, 2007 at 12:49am #

    Please see an Iranian scholar’s view who lives in exile and –based on his own words– cares about Peace and Social Justice in his homeland: