Did McCarthy‘s Visit to Israel Doom the Debt Ceiling
Submitted by Renee Parsons
Call me crazy; but sometime during Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s recent trip to Israel, a different Speaker emerged – perhaps it was the appearance of a Speaker who had been predicted to betray his Republican caucus or prove his allegiance to the elite globalist neocon crowd without a backward glance.
Or perhaps it had more to do with the energy in Israel; McCarthy went to Israel on top of the world; obviously impressed as hell with his position and his relationship with the Israelis never recognizing how easily they exploit him.
It was no surprise when McCarthy, who is Constitutionally third in line for the Presidency, announced a trip to Israel, having visited that country often over the years. He frequently accompanied newly elected House Members to that middle east country which has been fleecing US taxpayers since after WW II and, more importantly, have played an integral role, if not central component to US foreign policy – which raises the question why newly Electeds are expected to make pilgrimages to Israel, other than to inculcate them with an expected level of sustenance, with AIPAC picking up the tab.
Previously, McCarthy had been successfully holding his thin Republican margin intact, adopting a “No blank check“ for Ukraine had become a sort of mantra after Republicans won the House in 2022, his official position until his visit to Israel.
Now, gung ho, McCarthy’s speech before the Knesset revealed an off-centered grasp with a loss of perspective on reality; as if there is no accountability for one’s actions; immunity from public shaming and oblivious to Israel’s decades of war against a defenseless people, theft of their homes and abuse of their children, and especially Israel’s benefit from the US as obedient toadies.
That role is about to dramatically shift as the increasing influence of the BRICS nations adding new member states in late August with Iran and Saudi Arabia (among others) expected to join. The new BRICS makeup will irrevocably alter the geopolitical game board decisively impacting the Russia-China-Iran Eurasian axis including the US-Israel relationship. The BRICS are expected to adopt a common currency; thus fracturing the US grip on independent federated states as they shuck off US sanctions and its dependence on The Dollar. The level of anticipated geopolitical upheaval with foreign policy implications are, however, not part of McCarthy’s job description.
The Speaker’s visit was more than recognition of a seventy five year anniversary of an unparalleled US – Israel collaboration as the world’s largest recipient of US foreign aid at $150 Billion according to the CRS. Even in an era of debt ceiling debates, reliable bi-partisan Congressional generosity to protect Israel from stone-throwing Palestinian teenagers is rarely debated. Even the Trump administration’s $900 Billion coronavirus legislation contained substantial support for Israel with no real deliberation.
US aid has included decades of political patronage, economic aid and predominately military assistance; such as the Iron Dome all-weather defense system at $3 billion since 2011 as well as a ten year (FY 2019-2028) military assistance package worth $38 Billion (subject to Congressional Appropriations) that was signed in 2016. In addition, Israel is accumulating a quantity of Lockheed’s F35 stealth fighter jets at $90 million a pop with a purchase agreement of fifty by 2024 for an unspecified purpose.
The first US Speaker to address the Knesset since 1998, McCarthy was inordinately pleased with the distinct honor as something was lost in translation, no longer a Speaker of historic proportions. His speech was personal and enthusiastic, inspiring to the Israeli parliament as it was full of condescending, patronizing bombast asserting that Israel had achieved “faith and freedom, those values worth fight for or dying for especially today” with no acknowledgment of a massive infusion of American weapons and financial benevolence.
Clearly enthralled with the US-Israeli ‘special bond’ as ‘more personal and powerful’, McCarthy suggested that only two countries in history were “conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all are equal” except the Palestinians who have never known liberty or equality under Israeli rule.
Citing Israel’s success today that once relied on rationing food and oil, the Speaker praised “today’s Israel ranked as the fourth best performing economy among developing nations, its market economy is dynamic” and “its remarkable people are bursting with talent and ideas” including a “thriving innovative economy” all of which is more than can be said for today’s US economy.
With a notable lack of diplomacy, there were troubling elements with McCarthy’s remarks as he addressed anticipated foreign policy provocations including potential US military participation:
“Threats to peace have one primary cause: the rogue Iranian regime. Most of the turmoil in this region, of violence and instability can be traced back to that source which continues to fund terrorism, arms its proxy militias and pursues nuclear weapons. Iran seeks to destabilize Iraq. It wants to entrench missiles in Syria. It empowers the terrorist organization Hezbollah in Lebanon and it is fueling a brutal civil war in Yemen. And among all this aggression, it seeks to encircle Israel with hostile forces. We cannot allow the Iran regime evil campaign to succeed. To deter Iran’s dangerous behavior, our nation’s must continue to stand together. We the United States integrated Israel into our Central Command and are continuing to carry out military exercises together. As long as I am Speaker, America will continue to support fully funding for security assistance in Israel. Together, we will defeat Iran’s precision guided missiles, their drones, their terror tunnels and cyber attacks as we stand shoulder to shoulder against Iran’s regional aggression. We must always remain resolute in our commitment that Iran will never acquire a nuclear weapon.”
McCarthy apparently missed the memo that since 1968 Israel has steadfastly refused to sign the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty with a purported stash of perhaps two hundred-plus nuclear weapons in its possession.
His “final priority” was to ‘end efforts to delegitimize and discrimination against Israel, the toxic boycott divestment and sanctions movement or the constant attacks of Israel at the UN with prejudice against Israel on world stage is damaging and destructive” citing the UN’s Human Rights Council which has passed “over ninety anti-Israel resolutions” since 2006.
Assuming his right as Speaker, McCarthy announced establishing a House-Knesset Parliamentarian Friendship Group to work as “close together as possible, in collaboration” to continue “the strength of our bonds as elected representatives and work better together; democracy to democracy. We will engage more directly with the Knesset.” The idea would be that the US House would “host Knesset members to participate in Congress beginning a new chapter in US Israel relations.”
Perhaps Speaker McCarthy has not read the Constitution lately but the US House of Representatives is a Constitutionally mandated office (Article I, Section 2) requiring each Member to be a United States citizen. At no time did the country’s founders anticipate the co-mingling or dual citizenship with any foreign government certain to dissipate American principles and askew intent of the Constitution and Declaration of Independence. McCarthy’s Friendship Group would transform the Congress from an American-made legislature into an alien force with a foreign membership of split allegiance and divided loyalties. There are already a significant number of dual citizenship House Members, almost all include dual Israeli citizenship which challenges the concept of a Congress totally devoted to American institutions.
Immediately after his Knesset speech, McCarthy flipped his position on Ukraine in sharp contrast to his earlier stated position. “I vote for aid for Ukraine, I support aid for Ukraine,” Mr. McCarthy said to a reporter who had prefaced his question with, “We know that you don’t support the current unlimited and uncontrolled supplies of weaponry and aid to Ukraine.” McCarthy advised the reporter “I do not support what your country has done to Ukraine; I do not support your killing of the children either and we will continue to support, because the rest of the world sees it just as it is.”
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As anyone in a position of authority comes to realize, there is more to leadership than being anointed with a prestigious title that may presume to confer essential qualities of trust and respect. It is when the chips are down that truly gifted leadership emerges and trust is earned; the willingness to speak one’s own truth in the face of opposition and derision brings validation and public recognition.
It all comes down to the spiritual components of character and integrity, without which the inner gifts of virtue, vision, wisdom and generosity may lead to massive misjudgment or a zealous overreach where leadership fails to enshrine its place in history.