You may only read this site if you've purchased Our Kampf from Amazon or Powell's or me
• • •
"Mike and Jon, Jon and Mike—I've known them both for years, and, clearly, one of them is very funny. As for the other: truly one of the great hangers-on of our time."—Steve Bodow, head writer, The Daily Show

"Who can really judge what's funny? If humor is a subjective medium, then can there be something that is really and truly hilarious? Me. This book."—Daniel Handler, author, Adverbs, and personal representative of Lemony Snicket

"The good news: I thought Our Kampf was consistently hilarious. The bad news: I’m the guy who wrote Monkeybone."—Sam Hamm, screenwriter, Batman, Batman Returns, and Homecoming

March 13, 2008

James Webb and Mark Udall Pushing Bill To Prevent Attack On Iran

Just Foreign Policy:

Gen. William Fallon was, until Tuesday, the commander of U.S. Central Command. Last week, an article in Esquire called him the Bush administration's primary obstacle to an attack on Iran and advocate of serious diplomacy. Now, this military voice of reason on Iran has resigned, under pressure from the White House.

There is new momentum behind legislation introduced by Senator James Webb and Rep. Mark Udall that would prevent the President from attacking Iran without Congressional authorization. Senator Hillary Clinton, in a press release following Gen. Fallon's resignation, urged support for the bill. Just Foreign Policy met personally with Senator John Kerry during the Folly of Attacking Iran Tour, and he reaffirmed his active support.

The Webb/Udall bill would forbid the expenditure of money to attack Iran, which is probably the most powerful tool Congress has. You can tell your senators and representative to support it using Just Foreign Policy's email form here.

—Jonathan Schwarz

Posted at March 13, 2008 11:59 AM

Congress IS in the Bush dugout. Onward to Teheran.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at March 13, 2008 02:55 PM

If people can call for Spitzer to resign because they think he did something wrong, why aren't more people in Congress calling for Bush and Cheney to resign for being so incompetent at their jobs?

Posted by: darrelplant at March 13, 2008 05:09 PM

Well, technically the most powerful tool Congress has is the power to put teeth in existing laws, e.g. amend the War Powers Act to specify that ordering military operations OUTSIDE Congressional authorization is a capital crime. I imagine a fiasco like Iran-Contra would have gone a little differently had the principles known they were risking their own lives.

Posted by: Burai at March 13, 2008 06:09 PM

Sorry, but I'm a bit confused. If Congress passes a bill prohibiting Bush from attacking Iran without Congressional authorization, and Bush vetoes the bill, then does that mean Bush is now authorized to attack Iran?

Or maybe this is another one of those "Gee, looks like we don't have the votes!" exercises that the Dem leadership seems to be so fond of.

Posted by: SteveB at March 13, 2008 07:06 PM

It's only a crime if they get charged with a crime. Since when has FOOLISH (NO danger to them) ever stopped George and Dick? I

Posted by: Mike Meyer at March 13, 2008 10:00 PM

Here's a suggestion to pass on to Nancy, the next time you talk to her: ask her to announce that if Bush attacks Iran, she will institute impeachment proceedings immediately.

A much more effective deterrent than a bill that's never going to become a law.

Posted by: SteveB at March 13, 2008 10:36 PM

ask her to announce that if Bush attacks Iran, she will institute impeachment proceedings immediately.

HA! Like the Democrats would have the cojones to go after Bush while there's a new war ramping up. They don't even have the stones to take him on now after he's lost the "rally round the flag" effect that made people so stupid over these last few years. If Bush decided to start bombing Tehran tomorrow the pantswetters in Congress would block any attempt by any Dem with an actual spine to stop him.

Posted by: NonyNony at March 13, 2008 10:44 PM

NonyNony: CORRECT---Congress must be made to feel more INTIMIDATED by the AMERICAN TAXPAYER then their loyalty to Bush will cover. It's purely a numbers game. (voices,voices,voices)

Posted by: Mike Meyer at March 14, 2008 01:34 AM

I am thinking that all the stuff the dems do is just a dog and pony show. They don't need a bill telling bush he cannot go to war - they are supposed to be the ones to authorize war. And, they are the ones to fund war too - so if they don't want a war, then cut the funding.

And all these attempts to re-criminalize crimes (like torture) and the attempts to de-criminalize crimes (like wiretapping without a warrent) are just sad jokes, right?

If I commit a crime, do I get to ask for the law to be changed instead of being arrested?

when did we abandon the US Constitution, anyway? Was it during Carter's term or Reagan's?

Posted by: Susan - NC at March 14, 2008 01:45 AM

Election year legislation is a hoot! Where's the bill to give everyone Ipods and fruit snacks? That's sure to get the e-mail writing peons in a tizzy.

Posted by: AlanSmithee at March 14, 2008 06:19 AM

"international law"? fools. The reading I do suggests the NIE, while technically correct as far as it goes, has it all wrong. The Iranians are trying to get to the point they can be within easy reach of going going nuke witrhout actually doing so. That's dangerous, and as much of an idiot W is, I would not wish to tie the government's hands on this issue. I just hope they televise the mayhem, I could use some entertainment, aside from my little firecracker and my fascinating job.

Posted by: xyz at March 14, 2008 08:45 AM

Won't work. Bush has consistently asserted that he is not bound by the law. If he wants to attack Iran, he'll just do it and say "na na na na na."

Posted by: cervantes at March 14, 2008 09:39 AM

Does XYZ by any chance stand for the XYZ affaire?

Posted by: graeme at March 14, 2008 11:02 AM

which is probably the most powerful tool Congress has.

you mean apart from Joe Lieberman?

Posted by: almostinfamous at March 14, 2008 01:29 PM

"give everyone Ipods and fruit snacks?"
and item 100 from Peter's Evil Overlord List:
"Finally, to keep my subjects permanently locked in a mindless trance, I will provide each of them with free unlimited Internet access."

Posted by: Monkay at March 14, 2008 02:35 PM

It's not the internet they should hand out - it is free cable for all the stupid-beyond-belief TV shows.... that is what keeps Americans locked in a mindless trance.

Posted by: Susan - NC at March 14, 2008 11:54 PM