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If We’re Not There, Start Without US

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Joe Biden and Dick Cheney by blackenterprisedotcom.

By David Glenn Cox

It is well-documented that Joe Biden has been known to speak out of
turn. Of course the flip side of such a reputation is the ability to
say things meant in earnest and then to simply laugh them off. On
Sunday the Vice President told George Stephanopoulos that Israel has a
sovereign right to decide how to deal with Iran's nuclear ambitions
whether the United States agrees or not.

His statements are
beyond absurd, more worthy of a Dick Cheney or of Genghis Kahn. The
Vice President of the United States is again preaching Bush’s
preemptive war doctrine, based yet again on dodgy evidence. The United
States is a founding member of the United Nations and preaches to other
nations about international law. Article two of the United Nations
Charter states:

“The Organization is based on the principle of
the sovereign equality of all its Members. All Members, in order to
ensure to all of them the rights and benefits resulting from
membership, shall fulfill in good faith the obligations assumed by them
in accordance with the present Charter. All Members shall settle their
international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that
international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered. All
Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat
or use of force against the territorial integrity or political
independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the
Purposes of the United Nations.”

This leaves the administration
with a problem because no one has corrected the Vice President’s
statements. The government of the United States is in open breach of
the founding principle of the United Nations Charter once again. The
Obama administration inherited the Bush administration's wars of
aggrandizement. President Obama went to Cairo, Egypt to speak to the
Arab public to offer a change and a new beginning. This makes Biden’s
comments even more troubling. Was the President lying when he spoke in
Cairo? Was Biden expressing the administration's true feelings about
the region? The Arab public will not wait to find out and Obama will
not get a second chance to prove his good intentions.

Obama professes a desire for a new beginning, Israel continues to
expand settlements. Obama then tells the Arab audience that the United
States won’t tolerate that expansion, as predator drones kill over six
hundred Pakistani civilians. Six years into war and large segments of
Baghdad and Kabul have only limited electricity and water, while
billion-dollar American embassies rise into their skylines. We ignore
the occupation of Gaza; we ignore the arrests of humanitarian
activists, as the Vice President preaches that the United States has no
right to correct Israel.

First, Iran is a member in good
standing in the United Nations and is entitled to the full protection
of the UN. Secondly, Iran is a signator of the nuclear
non-proliferation treaty. They have every legal right to pursue the
peaceful use of nuclear power whether Israel likes it or not. Thirdly,
Iran is surrounded by nuclear neighbors, one of which has made repeated
threats of pre-emptive attacks against their nation. This nation has
gone so far as to stage and publicly announce plans for mock attacks
with it’s airforce against Iran. That nation is Israel, a nation that
operates its own illegal nuclear weapons program. The pot calling the
kettle black indeed!

Yet no one has threatened to bomb Israel’s
nuclear sites despite Israel’s threatened attacks on her neighbors. No
one calls for inspections of Israel’s nuclear sites or its weapons
labs. Iran is arguably working inside international treaties while the
claims that are made against her come mainly from a nation that has
never signed the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, a nation that has no
legal right to nuclear power and is demonstrably acting outside of the
existing nuclear conventions.

The Vice President continued,
"We cannot dictate to another sovereign nation what they can and cannot
do when they make a determination, if they make a determination, that
they're existentially threatened."

Following the Vice
President’s logic, Germany had every right to attack Poland in 1939;
The North Koreans had every right to invade South Korea. It is childish
baby talk. Saddam claimed that Kuwait was driving down the price of oil
to force Iraq to default on international loans, and under the new
Biden doctrine Saddam did the right thing by invading Kuwait. We send
the nation of Israel $3,000,000,000 each year in military assistance.
In each and every one of those contracts is the provision that the
weapons cannot be used in any way that is unacceptable to the United
States government.

Several years ago, due to US sanctions, Hugo
Chavez decided to sell his country's fleet of American-built warplanes.
The US State Department quickly emerged out of the recesses of their
office waving contracts at the Venezuelans that they could not sell or
give away those planes without specific US approval. Nor could they
dismantle or sell parts from the aircraft, nor are they allowed to
share technology found inside the aircraft. The Biden doctrine says
different; if Chavez claimed an existential threat, Chavez is free to
sell those airplanes to China for a truckload of gumballs.

could the US do then? Go to the UN and complain? We voted for change;
we voted for that change because as a nation we were sick of arbitrary
action with only a pretense of legality. The Vice President’s
uncontested statement is a full promotion, acceptance and furthering of
the Bush doctrine. But what if Iran feels existentially threatened? Is
she free to use pre-emptive war to solve her problems? Are all nations
now free to use war to solve foreign policy problems, or is it just the
United States and Israel?

This nation helped to found the United
Nations and hosts its headquarters in New York. But when responding to
questions of international peace the Vice President doesn’t even
mention its name.

“If the United Nations once admits that
international disputes can be settled by using force, then we will have
destroyed the foundation of the organization and our best hope of
establishing a world order.” (Dwight Eisenhower)

Let me be
clear, I’m not pro-Iran or anti-Israel; I’m pro-peace and anti-war. I’m
pro law and anti unitary preemptive action. I don’t care about
religions or historical claims; the law is the law and you can’t just
bend it for your friends and double it on your enemies. Otherwise you
cease to be a leader and you become just a thug. Statements such as
those made by the Vice President and not repudiated by the
administration are saying, in effect: If we’re not there when you’re
ready, just go ahead and start without us. That’s not change, and
that’s not legal, and that’s not a responsible statement for a world
leader to make. It's just more Bush thuggery.

“The heroes of
the world community are not those who withdraw when difficulties ensue,
not those who can envision neither the prospect of success nor the
consequence of failure -- but those who stand the heat of battle, the
fight for world peace through the United Nations.” (Hubert H. Humphrey)

(photo from blackenterprisedotcom)