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Even though most congressmen spend relatively little time on foreign policy, the most important issue confronting any elected official is that of war or peace. The Iraq War, which was based on lies, killed tens or possibly even hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and nearly 4,500 Americans. By one estimate, it will cost \$5 trillion before all the bills are paid and it had a devastating effect on the economy in general as well as on the national debt. And the results were terrible with Iraq currently dissolving into chaos and a bloodthirsty radical Islamic regime poised to pick up many of the pieces.

The upcoming November midterm congressional elections are a good opportunity to begin to look at candidates in terms of whether they are likely to continue the ugly national predisposition in place since 9/11 to use military force rather than to try to resolve international problems by other means. Here in Virginia my congressman Frank Wolf is retiring and I have been following closely the race to replace him. Wolf certainly had his faults, most notably his jumping on the band wagon in 2009 to derail the nomination of Chas Freeman as head of the National Intelligence Council. Freeman, who has been suspicious of America’s unnecessary wars would have been a breath of fresh air in examining disastrous foreign related policies, but he failed to obtain the seal of approval from the Israel Lobby and Wolf and others pounced. Wolf to his credit did propose and serve on the commission set up by the Iraq Study Group in 2006, which recommended withdrawing US ground troops from Iraq and negotiating with both Syria and Iran. The White House ignored the recommendations.

It would be hyperbolic to suggest that any of the five Republican candidates to succeed Wolf might in any way have been promoting an antiwar or even a non-interventionist agenda, but the winnowing process resulted in the selection of the candidate most strongly promoted by the GOP establishment, Barbara Comstock. Comstock, to give her her due, is probably on balance little better or worse than most other candidates for office. Inevitably a lawyer, relentlessly ambitious and absolutely loyal to her party, she reportedly has a formidable work ethic and has been described as having a “wonderfully devious mind” in connection with her involvement in various investigative committees, most notably in pursuit of the Clintons. Her website pushes all the obligatory GOP buttons, that she is a “common sense” pragmatic conservative, self-made, a working mom, against abortion, pro-gun, in favor of offshore drilling, and anti-Obamacare. It is the conventional resume for a Republican, though it omits that she worked as a Capitol Hill lobbyist, acting inter alia on behalf of the notorious contract security company Blackwater when it was being investigated for killing Iraqi citizens.

Comstock’s website doesn’t tell one much beyond the sound bites. I looked in vain for her views on foreign policy and found only “Protect our national security and protect our defense and national security infrastructure as well as the salaries and retirement of our dedicated military.” Presumably the buzzwords “infrastructure” and “salaries” are intended to send the message that she will not support any cuts in the government programs and jobs that fuel the northern Virginia economy, nor will she support any adjustments in the salaries and perks of active duty and retired military personnel, a substantial percentage of the voters in her district.

On the stump Comstock reportedly has been talking up doing something about Benghazi if she is elected, another Republican wedge issue as it not only discomfits Obama it also brings into the discussion Hillary Clinton, the possible Democratic Party presidential candidate in 2016. I must confess that I am somewhat perplexed by the GOP obsession with Benghazi as, having myself served in a national security role in government, I understand how there is a great deal of confusion as incidents are developing, particularly when information is poor or contradictory and options are hard to define, as was the case in Libya. Be that as it may, it appears that Comstock, like many other Republicans, would like to see the White House and State Department somehow blamed for the deaths of four Americans.

Nevertheless, I am sure Comstock understands that a serious Benghazi investigation would appear unlikely as no one in government has been personally held accountable for anything since 9/11. But agreeing with her in principle, I personally would like to see the White House of George W. Bush held responsible for the unnecessary deaths of nearly 6,800 US military personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan. Somehow I don’t think that Comstock will be heading in that direction.

There are also some other red flags in what Comstock appears to represent, namely that her party loyalty appears to trump all other considerations. One critic asks “Does she believe in any definition of right and wrong outside of partisan politics? Or does she believe that her side is always right, even when they break the law?”which leads one to suspect that her actual interest in national security may be more partisan than real. In 2005 she resigned from a senior position with the Justice Department to head the defense fund for Scooter Libby, a White House aide later convicted of perjury and other crimes over his involvement in the outing of clandestine CIA officer Valerie Plame. Plame was under cover, a felony offense.

Comstock appeared to be heedless of the damage Libby had done in connection with the exposure of Plame to punish her husband for debunking the tale that African uranium may have gone to Iraq to construct a nuclear weapon, which was one of the lies the Bush administration was using to justify war. Comstock has since argued that Libby deserved a fair hearing, but voluntarily taking on the task of raising money for a White House apparatchik who did grave damage to national security suggests that Comstock placed party above country. Valerie Plame’s career was destroyed and the exposure of the costly CIA cover mechanism damaged efforts to find and neutralize nuclear proliferators, a major national strategic interest. Other clandestine CIA officers using the same cover were also placed in jeopardy.

Comstock will also almost certainly be a fan of the seemingly endless war on terror. When she was seeking the GOP nomination her website boasted of the many endorsements she had from national Republican figures, though her honor roll of friends has mysteriously disappeared from the current site. The list included John Bolton, Eric Cantor, Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin. Levin, a talk radio bigot, is a deep political thinker who believes that Jews who support President Obama are “self haters” and “despise their own country.”

All Comstock’s endorsees are hawks and all of them have promoted more wars in the Middle East, notably to include either US “preemptive” military action against Iran or supporting Israel automatically if it chooses to do the same. As Comstock promises to deliver knee jerk jingoism, it is perhaps time for voters in my district and others who are confronted with a similar continuation of the status quo to cast a vote against the party that seems to produce candidates that are addicted to war. Admittedly there are plenty of Democratic hawks, but there is a qualitative difference with the GOP in that war as a substitute for foreign policy is in its DNA. That means in practice that one should hold one’s nose and generally speaking vote for anyone who is not a Republican. Here at home in Virginia there will be a Democrat running who might have more moderate views on US foreign policy and I believe there will also be a libertarian candidate. Or I can always write in “Ron Paul.”

• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Republicans 
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  1. I am sick of the neocons and war hawks who run the Republican party. A lot of these fools want to start a shooting war with Russia, too. What is to be done? It seems like the only way to get these done is to chose the one issue that matters most (immigration, for me), and work for that issue. What’s left over for other important issues, such as our politicians not being a pathologically stupid geopolitical blunderers?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  2. Don Nash says: • Website

    Well said Mr. Giraldi. However, I think there’s not a dime’s bit of difference between any Democrap verses any Republican. Just about 535 members of our US Congress, House and the Imperial Senate, are in open and corrupt treason to the American Constitution and ‘we the people’. Congress is solidly ‘Israel first’ and pro-war second. Rhyme and/or reason hold no sway with the “members” and that is abysmally unacceptable.

  3. Wonder says:

    Are conservative women heartless when it comes to war and killing?

    Have they sold their womanly souls in order to stand with the men? Are they mindlessly getting on a political bandwagon? Except for the likes of Cheney and McCain, are they more blood thirsty then the average conservative male?

    How is it that they can show no sympathy or real concern for the poor Palestinians?

    How can they express admiration for Netanyahu and his chest pounding murder of innocent folks?

    When women take on the bad traits of men, humanity is in trouble.

    • Replies: @Minnesota Mary
    , @Anonymous
  4. Glaivester says: • Website

    I agree with Jewish Conservative Race Realist.

    Vote for anyone but a Democrat (with a half-dozen exceptions, perhaps) as Democratic Immigration Patriots are just about extinct:

  5. jfl says: • Website

    Voting for a republicrat/demoblican is a loser by definition. Anyone associated with either branch of the war party is by definition the problem. Unless and until we absolutely clear the house and senate and white house of republicrat/demoblicans we haven’t a chance of turning things around.

    We have to write in candidates of our own. We have to hold our own primary elections first to discover ordinary, decent people from among ourselves willing to take the job and to do it. We’ll need multiple such primaries to do so, so we’d better start now.

    And we need to involve a solid majority of our friends and neighbors in each of our precincts to do this. Not only will the logistics require it, but many districts are so mobbed up that write-ins are illegal. Or only warparty approved write-ins are counted.

    It’s clear that there will be tremendous opposition to a House/Senate/White House cleaning and the only way we be sure of overcoming it is by having the numbers. There is no way they can disenfranchise a majority of the voters in a Congressional District.

    There will be war if they try.

  6. macilrae says:

    The “winnowing process” that goes on to ensure that the right candidates are put forward from the two main parties; as well as their concerted effort to destroy at all costs any Independent candidate who looks as if he/she is gaining traction; guarantees the status quo and guarantees that the people will never have a real (may I say ‘democratic’?) choice. The system is so rigged that it is impossible for anybody of ‘integrity’ or ‘principle’ – or possibly even real intelligence – to survive the winnowing.

    • Replies: @jfl
  7. conatus says:

    C’mon you are talkin’ Northern Virgina here. Every third house has a retired Colonel or Sargent. It is their bread and butter. If you could get a US Rep who was even slightly non military in Northern Virginia that would be an achievement.
    I was talking to a retired military in NoVa last week and happened to bring up this Wikipedia page:
    List of countries by military expenditures

    Where the US spends 36% of the worlds military spending and fearsome menacing Russia spends five per cent. From the reaction I got it was as if I took a dump on the table. It is a matter of survival to a huge number of constituents in this district and I mean salary survival rather than food and clothing.
    You are better off convincing the middle class in the rest of the American voting districts that they are paying this outrageously disproportionate amount to the US military to maintain safe sea lanes, and a relatively conflict free world so goods can be transported and THEY, THE US MIDDLE CLASS TAX PAYERS, can lose their jobs as the result of safe global commerce.

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
  8. KA says:

    Mr Giraldi
    Asia Times on line is reporting that SCO -
    ( that includes China,Russia and the 5 Stan’s would invite Iran, Pakistan,India and Monglia to join the group. This will definitely put a roadblock to any further sanction let alone military strikes on Iran.
    GOP has become a party of stupid . One wonders if this is coerced sucicide . They have no chance to come power while objecting to every and all kind of social issues . Still they cling to these meaningless ,diversionary ,fruitless arguments . Democrat benefits from the fall out and then does same thing that the GOP would do on foreign and economic policies . If challenged they would answer ” Do you want a misogynist,homophobe,anti immigrant in the office” .

  9. Neutral says:

    So it is the stupid party or the evil party, sometimes not voting is really the best option.

  10. Dave37 says:

    The Republicans seem to be on a self-destruct path though at least the enemies they choose so far, are some pretty nasty people like North Korea, AQ, ISIS, Iraq’s Hussein but both parties seemed to be ruled by educated thinkers that just keep making things worse. Voting for a 3rd party choice seems the only reasonable reaction to me.

  11. rod1963 says:

    Wouldn’t vote for either party. One is stupid(GOP) and the other is just plain evil(Democrats) and worse both are owned by Wall Street and the banks.

  12. jfl says: • Website

    Not voting for ‘either’ party, yeah. Not voting … no. We’ll have to seize control of our country, if we really want control, and repudiating the republicrat/demoblican machine at the polls is essential. It is a delusion … just another empty luxury … to imagine this can go on much longer. Not voting at all is solipsism. When they finally do come for you there will be no one left with whom to cast your lot in ‘solidarity’.

  13. jfl says: • Website

    That’s correct. That’s why we have to actually take control of the election apparatus in ‘our’ country, if we’re serious about wanting control. We did it in 1776 and we can do it again, if we want to.

    I’m not talking some kind of ridiculous armed confrontation with the Armed Forces/Cops of the USA. They’ll kill us all without a second thought. Brains disappear inside uniforms.

    I’m talking about actually organizing on the precinct/district level to turn the machine out and to send one from among ourselves in. This will not be easy, but we can all imagine the steps it will take. It’s a question of putting one foot in front of the other and organizing, of becoming molecules rather than atoms in our precincts and organisms rather than random collections of cells in our districts.

    We all know what needs to be done. We’re all ‘too well off’, too invested in the status quo, or think we are, to actually effect democracy. In fact … it appears we don’t really want democracy. Oligarchy is fine with those who imagine themselves safely among the oligarchs.

  14. KA says:

    By positioning herself as the best lawyer for Israel money can buy,Hillary is not going to be any different than Huckabee or Santorum,or Cheneysque figure from the current younger generation.

  15. Stalin infamously said he didn’t mind elections as long as he got to choose who counts the votes. There is a faux democracy where they don’t subvert democracy after the fact, but choke it in the cradle. They don’t care who counts the votes, because they get to choose who’s allowed to run, in an enforced duopoly that excludes non-donorist supported candidates. I can’t say whether thse are the last days of imperium, or simply its fulfillmnt, but genuine democratic accountability has passed, as it does in all imperiums. With history as a teacher, change of trajectory is highly unlikely in the short term.

  16. fnn says:

    The only non-violent solution I can think of is to change the laws at the state and local level to elect legislatures, boards, etc. by low threshold proportional representation. You know, just like they do in Israel.

    Build up a presence at the state and local level and maybe a genuine dissident movement can build up the momentum to go national before the whole empire collapses.

  17. spider says:

    There are some paths which, when you decide to go down, it is an irreversible decision. With US support of genocide in Gaza America’s stated ideals will forever be viewed as self serving and hypocritical; and it these ideals more so than the military might that have made America grea., and the envy of the world. This power of ideas and ideals has been lost, and military might is all that is left. In the long run it will not be enough. Dwight Eisenhower observed that ” America is not good because it is great, America is great because it is good. America is no longer good.

  18. If you vote at all, write in: None of the above”. Doing anything else is voting for the war party by proxy, because in the long run, Zionist (via AIPAC) control both parties through a combination of bribes and threats.

  19. Jefferson says:

    “Vote for anyone but a Democrat (with a half-dozen exceptions, perhaps) as Democratic Immigration Patriots are just about extinct:”

    Even so-called “moderate middle of the road Democrats” support amnesty and open borders. There is a Democrat named Kirsten Powers who labels herself as a “moderate Democrat”, but on the issue of immigration she is very far to the left just like Ted Kennedy and George Soros.

    The only issue where she takes a right wing view on is abortion.

  20. Pete says:

    From Huey (the Kingfish) Long; the difference between a Democrat and a Republican is; “One skins you from the head to the ankles, and the other from the ankles to the head.” Write-in RON PAUL!

  21. Trying to get a party to part with its major donors or block vote bosses is next to impossible in our system. If we want to turn the GOP into a patriotic party, we have to find a way of organizing the “Patriot Block.” I had some hopes for the Tea Party but they are caught between being a genuine grass roots movement and becoming just another beltway racket.

    It seems to me that the corporate donors, the Israel lobby and a few others are calling the shots in the GOP because each has something to offer. The Tea Party is not organized in such a way asa to get what it wants. It does not control enough money to buy influence, and it does not have enough structure and leadership to formulate a coherent agenda. So unless some people come together to form such a movement/party nothing will change barring an existential crisis.

    The inescapable fact is that you can not succeed at politics if you reject everything about being political. I can see a future for a traditionalist, nationalist party in America. If you could get corporate America on board, you might have a chance. That’s unlikely however, in our globalized industrial state. How this might play with the rise of a strong Libertarian impulse is another, possibly insoluble challenge.

  22. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Jewish Conservative Race Realist

    If anyone thinks that democrats are better, then be my guest and vote for them. They only thing is that they take your vote as a encouragement and start a war with China and war with Russia later.

  23. @conatus

    The other thing that can never apparently be mentioned is just how F*cking useless these military parasites are.

    On 9/11, so we are told, on half a trillion dollars a year they couldn’t defend their own headquarters against twelve dollars worth of box-cutters.


  24. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    RIP Golda Meir and Margaret Thatcher

  25. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Much of this article repeats Democrat talking points surrounding WMDs in Iraq, the ousting of Valerie Plame, and Scooter Libby’s role, all of which can be remedied by consulting the one person who actually went to jail over the matter:

    The rest of it’s fine.

  26. Comstock is also a Feminist. I would vote for the Democrat (or Libertarian) before that horrid woman.

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