At least someone likes the nomination of Chuck Hagel for defense secretary. “Over the years, Mr. Hagel has developed an ongoing relationship with the American-Iranian Council, a precursor to the National Iranian American Council. Both groups oppose U.S. sanctions on Iran, support Iranian trade with U.S. businesses and promote unconditional U.S. negotiations with the Iranian regime over its nuclear program.” And strangely Hagel didn’t disclose to the Senate a speech he gave to the group in 2007. I wonder what is in that speech and if there is a video.
At least we know they aren’t “moderates.” “The progressive Western media is thus discovering that Morsi & Co. are not so ‘moderate’ after all. It is nice to see some reality creep into the ‘Arab Spring’ narrative. But we really should stop being unrealistic about the Egyptian military. The armed forces did not step in to stop the Brotherhood while still under the command of Mubarak’s generals. Why would they step in now when they are under the command of Islamist generals chosen by the Brotherhood.”
At least someone is concerned about Venezuela. Unfortunately, none in the administration. The Anti-Defamation League: “We are deeply troubled by a recent news report alleging that the Venezuelan Intelligence Service (SEBIN) is spying on the Venezuelan Jewish community. Venezuela under the regime of Hugo Chavez has a history of harassing the Jewish community in that country. It is chilling to read reports that the SEBIN received instructions to carry out clandestine surveillance operations against members of the Jewish community . . . .For more than a decade, elements of the Venezuelan government-run media and the so-called ‘alternative’ media operated by Chavez government supporters have regularly engaged in spreading anti-Jewish conspiracy theories and promoting anti-Semitic stereotypes.”
At least the right-wing anti-immigrant crowd won’t have Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on its side: ‘You can’t have open borders in a welfare state. We’ve got a pretty significant welfare state, so it’s not just about normalizing the 11 or 12 million here, it’s whether or not while you’re doing that another 11 or 12 million come in, and I think that will bankrupt the country,’ Paul said. ‘So I am concerned, but I’m also open-minded enough to say that it is an issue that we do need to evolve on.’ ”
At least we know they are shameless. White House officials who insisted on the sequester blame the sequester on the Republicans. “White House Blames GDP Drop On Republicans.”
At least Republicans can point to the states for examples of successful conservative governance. “Gov. Robert F. McDonnell’s transportation plan cleared its first hurdle Wednesday. The [Virginia] House Finance Committee approved the measure by a 13 to 8 vote — including votes from two Democrats after only an hourlong debate. Lawmakers amended the proposal to exempt natural gas vehicles from paying the alternative fuel vehicle fee and give a refund to people using diesel-powered vehicles for personal use.”
At least one Western democracy will use force against Syria. “The early-morning Israeli strike took place inside Syria and targeted a convoy carrying a shipment of Russian-made SA-17 missiles, according to a Western official briefed on the strike.”