In 1998, Republicans pushed a bill through Congress called the Iraq Liberation Act, which made it the official policy of the United States to seek regime change in Iraq. The bill was even signed into law by then-President Bill Clinton. It took five years after that for the US invasion of Iraq under the Bush administration. Now, the ‘progressives’ fear that Republicans will employ the same treatment for Iran.
Supporters of the Obama administration’s diplomatic approach say that advocates of an Iran invasion are pursuing the same long-term strategy now.:By putting the issue on the table right now, Iran hawks are hoping to limit the president’s room to maneuver, and make it easier for a future president to launch a military strike. “Iraq didn’t happen in two months,” Rubin told The Upshot, noting that it took five years from the passage of the Iraq Liberation Act in 1998 until the 2003 invasion. “So this is the playbook.”
Indeed, Marc Lynch of Foreign Policy magazine wrote recently that he’s anticipating “some kind of Iran Liberation Act on the horizon” from the GOP Congress.
Duss agreed. “You see them running a very similar game as they ran in the ’90s,” he said. During that period, Republicans and their allies frustrated many of Clinton’s political goals, “then offered [the Iraq Liberation Act] as a way to be bipartisan.”
And last week’s election results give the hawks more leverage. “After the election, they feel the broader Obama agenda has been rejected,” Rubin said. “There’s a feeling they may have Obama a bit more on the ropes.” And that, in turn, may make the president more willing to move toward the GOP on Iran policy, observers say.Â “Graham is saying: If [Obama] wants Republican support and bipartisanship, being tougher on Iran would work,” according to Rubin.
Starting in January, advocates of a tougher line on Iran will have powerful allies in Congress who could help advance that plan. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) [pictured. CiJ], a veteran Iran hawk who has downplayed the effectiveness of sanctions, will take over as chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
I hope the next country we involve ourselves with will allow us to wise up and use less ground troops for occupation and more target bombing. There are ways to run these wars with less American casualties. We need to stop blaming ourselves and protect ourselves from these suicidal cultures. no more occupation thinking. this time we don’t fix what we break.