Shortly after news broke that the Pentagon is sending 1,000 new troops to the Middle East, Fox News brought on Sen. Tom Cotton to cheerlead a war with Iran as necessary and no biggie. And he and Fox’s Ed Henry are ready to smear doubters as “siding with the ayatollahs.”
You could almost see Cotton and Henry salivating for a new military conflict (with others doing the fighting and dying).
COTTON: If the United States and Iran are on a collision course, it’s only because Iran continues its 40-year low-level war against the United States to the point of provoking retaliatory military strikes.
Let’s remember the ayatollah seized power in 1979 and immediately invaded sovereign American soil, our embassy in Tehran, and held our fellow citizens hostage for 400 days. Also, in 1997, 1998, Iran did exactly the kind of thing they’re doing now: attacking commercial vessels in the Persian Gulf and in the Strait of Hormuz to the point that Ronald Reagan had to conduct retaliatory military strikes against the Iranian Navy and their oil facilities.
COTTON: What Iran did last week warrants such retaliatory military strikes. It’s up to Iran whether they want to behave like a civilized, normal nation or that they want to continue to conduct these kind of terrorist attacks.
Henry gave the war mongering a stamp of approval: “Hey, Senator, you laid out some stubborn facts right there.”
Then Henry opened the door and all but asked Cotton to walk through it and attack Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi for disagreeing. Henry played a clip of Pelosi stating (correctly) that Trump has inflamed tensions with Iran by pulling out of the nuclear agreement and that “he probably knows there’s no appetite for war among the American people.”
Cotton did not refute her assertions. So instead, he smeared her.
COTTON: I’m surprised and a little disappointed that Nancy Pelosi sounds like she’s siding with the ayatollahs just a few days after they attacked commercial vessels in the open seas of the Gulf of Oman.
Notice the look of amusement on Henry’s face as Cotton, essentially, accuses Pelosi of treason for questioning Trump’s reckless behavior.
Henry didn’t pose a single challenge to the war fever. Nor did he point out that we don’t even have a secretary of defense.
As Media Matters noted, Cotton is just one of many guests that the network, Trump’s most trusted team of advisers, has deployed the last several days to peddle a military strike as necessary and relatively cost-free. In fact, like the “cakewalk” in Iraq, a strike against Iran is likely to prove anything but. Media Matters explains:
“You could see the administration going down a path of limited military action against Iranian targets, … but the risk of miscalculation is much higher,” Ilan Goldenberg, who served in the Pentagon and the State Department during the Obama administration and is now at the Center for a New American Security, told Politico. “If President Trump is able to be convinced that he can do that without Iranian retaliation, he would be playing with fire.”
Watch the war mongering below and please consider contacting Cotton to let him know what you think of this kind of rhetoric. You can reach his Washington, D.C. office at (202) 224-2353 or by Twitter at @SenTomCotton.
Like Pence’s childish spokesman, Cotton’s remarks are the irrelevant rantings of an infant. The sad part of it today is that the other infant is able to ask Mike Pence to actually take military action.