Friday, December 02, 2011

Dem Senator Lashes out at Obama's Iran policy: VideoBite

While this video is longer than I usually post, this is stunning. 
Democrat Senator Robert Menendez (NJ) lashes out at Obama's Iran policy


Senate Votes Unanimously to Sanction Iran Central Bank -Siobhan Hughes

The U.S. Senate on Thursday voted 100-0 to adopt economic sanctions against Iran's central bank similar to those announced by the UK to block Iran's entire banking sector from the UK financial system. The vote came in spite of warnings from the Obama administration that the sanctions would alienate allies and drive up oil prices.

Lawmakers say the Obama administration needs to show a greater sense of urgency in the wake of reports from the UN nuclear agency that Iran has been developing technologies needed to produce a nuclear weapon. Lawmakers also point to U.S. allegations that Iran was plotting to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington.
(Dow Jones-Wall Street Journal)

Administration Tries to Water Down Iran Sanctions -Josh Rogin

President Obama's administration is working behind the scenes to water down congressional language that would impose crippling sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran (CBI). The administration sent to Congress this week a list of requested changes to the sanctions language found in the Senate's version of the defense authorization bill, which was passed last week. Those sanctions, which would punish any bank that does business with the CBI, were part of an amendment authored by Sens. Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) that passed over the administration's objections by a vote of 100 to 0.

The administration wants to delay the implementation of sanctions not related to oil purchases from 60 to 180 days, and wants to water down the severity of sanctions measures if and when they are put into effect.
(Foreign Policy)


House-Senate Panel Agrees on New Sanctions on Iran

Leaders of a U.S. House and Senate negotiating panel said they had agreed to compromise legislation imposing new sanctions that target Iran's central bank, despite Obama administration misgivings over the measure. Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.) said the bill was probably "96 percent" the same as legislation that passed the Senate last week. It would penalize foreign financial institutions that do business with Iran's central bank, the main conduit for its oil revenues.


LHwrites said...

This was pretty significant and also a sizable piece for your blog as you point out. However, the problem with this is it is much like Palestinians putting up a piece of crying families talking about how Israel just killed their kids but leaving out that their children were soldiers and the attack was firing back for a missile barrage that came form that area. Menendez said they had just skewered the proposal but it would have been good to see their criticism of it. It is not like the Congress and Senate only hand down good work, or that even a President of the same party should accept everything from them unaltered. That is why there are vetoes and why there is pork--- because while Congress represents the nation as does the President, members of congress sometimes have more provincial motives. I am not saying Menendez is wrong but I will have to look into this before I can say he is right. The Iran problem is tricky because we could just go embargo their oil with an armada...but then the world oil market will be in turmoil, oil will be about $175. a barrel, and then these same Senators that propose this will blame Obama for the economic collapse--the Dems distancing themselves from him and the Repubs pointing fingers. China and Russia have already said they won't support harsh economic or oil sanctions and most of Europe are still not considering them because of this. Unfortunately this is too heated and complicated an issue to hash out just with soundbites. I applaud you and your fine blog for bringing this to the forefront, but it cannot be reasoned out from this.

Bruce said...

The significance, in my view, is that a fellow Dem, is again going after the President publicly on national did several other Dems at the last AIPAC gathering.

Menendez is a moderate Dem with a long history of understanding the MidEast...i wish the President did not require his own party to set him doubt this is a result of real differences in the Dem Party; Obama represents the far left of the Party...but he is their leader.

Clearly Senator Menendez has a stronger understanding of the complexities of international politics. Obama's a greenhorn.