As China Sells Weapons to Iran and Pakistan, Obama Bows to Beijing

Jim Emerson,

New documents added to WikiLeaks leaked United States embassy cables revealed that China has been selling missiles and parts to Iran, Syria, and Pakistan in violation of its agreement with the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR).

MTCR was formed in 1987 as an informal, voluntary partnership of 34 countries to prevent the export of long-range weapons of mass destruction to hostile nations. China is not a member but has assured the members it will support the group’s policy of missile non-proliferation. China has not been allowed to join the MTCR because of its non-existent export controls. China has not signed nor agreed to the UN’s “Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation.” China always says the right things but has a difficult time honoring its own words.

A September 2009 State Department cable entitled “China’s Ballistic Missile-Related Export Control Record” outlines Chinese missile export transfers to Syria and Iran. As excerpted from the cable….

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Tim Pawlenty: We Need More, Bigger Unconstitutional Wars!

Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

In election years, candidates inevitably promise voters they will do more than their opponents. In practice that usually means increased debt-spending and expanding unconstitutional encroachments on liberty. Now one Republican presidential candidate has doubled-down on the most blatantly illegal action of this presidency, saying Barack Obama has not gone far enough in waging war-by-decree in Libya — and those who want to follow the Constitution are bead-wearing hippies bent on dragging America down in disgrace.

On Tuesday, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty gave what he dubbed a “major” foreign policy speech to the Council on Foreign Relations. In it, Pawlenty pouted, “parts of the Republican Party now seem to be trying to out-bid the Democrats in appealing to isolationist sentiments.”

“America already has one political party devoted to decline, retrenchment, and withdrawal,” he said. “It does not need a second one.”

He fleshed out what he meant in the speech — calling on Obama to “commit America’s strength to removing Ghadafi” and recognize the rebels as Libya’s legitimate government. During a question-and-answer session afterward, TPaw agreed with President Obama that the War Powers Resolution “does not apply” to the war in Libya.

In March, Pawlenty told students at Vanderbilt University that getting Congressional authorization for a war, as required by the Constitution and the resolution, is “a very complex matter and it’s not something that lends itself to an easy answer.” He added, “we need to make sure we don’t tie the executive or the commander in chief’s hands so tightly that he or she can’t respond in an emergency quickly or in a situation that deserves and needs a quick response.” Pawlenty told the CFR on Tuesday he would consult with Congress “as a courtesy and gesture of respect.”

His speech and his attack on his fellow Republicans raises (at least) 15 questions this author would like to ask Gov. Pawlenty:

  1. You have stated the War Powers Resolution does not apply to the war in Libya. However, the administration’s best lawyers disagreed with your assessment. Attorney General Eric Holder reportedly sided with them. The highest legal scholar in the administration to hold to your view is Harold Koh, who advocates “transnationalist jurisprudence,” who once branded the United States a member of the “axis of disobedience,” and who often co-authors articles with members of the Center for Constitutional Rights — a pro-terrorist legal house founded by Marxists. How can a self-identified “conservative” find himself to the Left of Eric Holder? If elected, will you rely on the advice of Koh or others of his ideology?
  2. The Founding Fathers clearly placed the war-making power in the hands of Congress alone — in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution as well as their deliberations before its passage and their practice following its adoption. Since the Constitution has not been amended, what legal precedent do you believe suspended and nullified the Founders’ intentions?
  3. Since you do not believe Congressional authorization is necessary to initiate hostilities, at what point, if any, would you consider Congressional authorization necessary to continue military interventions abroad in which American personnel or weapons were killing or attempting to kill foreign nationals (referred to as “hostilities” in the War Powers Resolution)?

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One View: Obama’s Afghan Withdrawal Will Cost Lives

Note: Reasonable people can differ about the wisdom of our ongoing war in Afghanistan, its proper goals or methods of execution, and which policies will best secure our interests following the death of Osama bin Laden. Conservatives continue to debate these issues. Below, Lisa Curtis offers her view that by ignoring the generals, Obama is threatening the mission and setting America up for more serious consequences to come. Is Obama showing his hatred for the military and playing politics with American lives? – Ed.

Lisa Curtis, Human Events

President Obama’s plan for a hasty withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan risks squandering the hard-won gains made on the battlefield in southern Afghanistan over the last ten months.

U.S. military commanders on the ground in Afghanistan had reportedly requested a slower pace of withdrawal to afford them the opportunity to consolidate recent gains against Taliban insurgents.  President Obama has denied his military commanders flexibility to determine the pace and scope of withdrawal based on conditions on the ground, and instead appears to have based his decision largely around the U.S. domestic political calendar.

The plans for rapidly withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan also risks upending the major achievement of eliminating Osama bin Laden across the border in Pakistan.

Bin Laden’s death and an aggressive drone campaign in Pakistan’s tribal border areas have put al-Qaeda on its back foot.  The Administration deserves credit for accomplishing this crucial objective.

However, it is short-sighted to use bin Laden’s death as justification for hastening the U.S. troop draw down in Afghanistan.  Announcing rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces will likely bolster the morale of the Taliban and encourage them to stick with the fight.

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Cartoon of the Day: This Way to an Exit….

Osamaphrenia: Obama’s Ever-Changing Political Stories about Killing Bin Laden

Doug Book,

Obama's Neverending Story about Osama's death. Will we ever know the truth?

The Regime of Change has outdone itself, for since the May 2nd death of Osama bin Laden; nothing has changed more consistently than the story of the al-Qaeda master’s demise.

We have been told that bin Laden was armed and fired at his attackers, that he despicably used a struggling woman as a shield and that a 40-minute firefight preceded his death.

Then we learned that only bin Laden’s personal courier had a weapon, a woman was wounded only because she flung herself in front of her vile hero, and the SEAL force faced little or no resistance after entering the walled compound.

So, why is there such confusion in what should be a straightforward story of objective, mission, and result?

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