November 21,2012 By Jack Jodell
The defeated Republican Party’s two major remaining neocons, Senators John McCain (AZ) and Lindsay Graham (SC) have recently been involved in a ruthless and cynical attack campaign focused on our current Ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice. These bitterly partisan Old Guard dinosaurs have been using the very competent Ms. Rice as a proxy to attack the newly re-elected President Obama, and it is a disgusting ploy.
Susan Rice, the presumed heir-apparent to outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, has been criticized for remarks she made on various TV news programs immediately following the tragic September 11, 2012 terrorist attack on our Libyan consulate in Benghazi. This attack killed our Libyan Ambassador Chris Stevens and 3 other Americans. As our UN Ambassador, it was right for her to comment, and she did so with a balanced and nuanced statement, taking into account the background as to what may have contributed to the incident. But because she didn’t overwhelmingly and immediately blame it on al Qaeda terrorists, she is being pilloried unmercifully by these mean-spirited neocons. Naturally, the very biased Fox “News” crew has enthusiastically jumped on this bandwagon, as all of these extremists are grabbing at any straw they think will somehow mysteriously link the Obama administration to some sort of sordid Libyan coverup.
That John McCain should be at the center of all of this must surprise nobody. For, ever since his deserved massive electoral defeat by Obama in the 2008 election, he has hated the President and has looked for every opportunity he can to criticize or oppose him. Such pettiness is unbecoming of a U.S. Senator. It also shows how frightfully unbalanced McCain has become over the years. Beginning with his ludicrous “bomb, bomb, bomb – bomb, bomb Iran” quip in early 2008, to his selection of the woefully underqualified Sarah Palin to be his runn9ing mate later that year, to his current pledge to block the appointment of Ms. Rice to be Secretary of State by any means necessary, this man is proving himself to be not only erratic, but dangerously unhinged as well!
McCain has long had great praise for former Bush-era Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, even though THAT Ms. Rice proved herself to be asleep at the wheel when she was National Security Advisor during the devastating 9/11 al Qaeda attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in 2001. This calls to question his credibility as a reliable and viable defense spokesman today.
There is another reason this bitter old man may be objecting so strenuously to the prospect of a Secretary of State Susan Rice. There is reason to believe that the cynical McCain may be attempting to force President Obama to withdraw her name to instead put current Massachusetts Senator John Kerry into contention for the post. Kerry would easily win approval, which would create a vacancy in the Senate which the recently defeated yet popular Republican Scott Brown could possibly win in two more years. The Republicans have been smarting over the defeat of Brown by Elizabeth Warren and this, of course, would bolster the Republican Party’s chances to pick up one additional Senate seat rather effortlessly.
Regardless, John McCain’s nasty attempt to deny Susan Rice her chance of becoming Secretary of State should and must be thwarted. In her current position, she was confirmed by unanimous consent, and with good reason: a brilliant Rhodes Scholar, she served in the Clinton administration nobly in a variety pf international-oriented posts. Her grasp on foreign affairs is unquestionably sound. She, like Hillary Rodham Clinton before her, will prove to be a superb Secretary of State. For McCain and other neocons to deny her would equate to a shameful, unnecessary, unjustified modern-day political lynching!