I'm never quite sure what to make of former CIA guy Phil Giraldi.
He identified the "yellowcake" documents as forgeries, and later established the fraudulence
of Iranian nuclear documents proferred by advocates for war. Admirable work.
But Giraldi has also served as Ron Paul's foreign affairs adviser, which puts him squarely in the Yet Another Fucking Libertarian camp. That's not a way to get on my good side.
Yesterday, Giraldi wrote a startling piece
which, in essence, accuses various congressfolk of having greater loyalty to Israel than to the United States.
I am referring to a concerted "betrayal of trust" by a group of American government elected officials in openly advancing policies that serve the interests of a foreign country, specifically the senators and congressmen who are lining up behind Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to oppose the White House’s attempt to negotiate an equitable solution to the thirty-five year confrontation with Iran...
There just might be a congressman or two who actually believes that or who genuinely thinks that Iran poses some kind of threat to the United States, but it does not require any particular insight to realize that the opposition to talks with Iran overwhelmingly comes directly from Israel and its friends and from nobody else. The principal Israeli lobby AIPAC has basically declared war on the White House over the issue and the Senators who are leading the charge are firmly in Israel’s pocket. Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois is even being briefed by Israeli intelligence and Israeli cabinet ministers have been observed pleading their case on Capitol Hill to a very receptive audience. Several congressmen have angrily confronted Secretary of State Kerry when he was trying to explain the tentative agreement with Iran, citing information they received from the Israeli Embassy and even quoting the Israeli media.
Although I'd love to see AIPAC rendered toothless, Giraldi doesn't give us damning evidence of pay-offs.
There's also the distinct possibility that Giraldi himself might have an angle. He directs something called the Council for the National Interest
, which advocates for fairer treatment of the Palestinians. Although I like that cause, I don't know who funds the organization. If a foreign government is involved, Giraldi has opened himself up to charges of hypocrisy.
Why do I draw your attention to Giraldi's piece? Because he opens with a very bold and thought-provoking suggestion -- one that takes us well beyond the Israel-Iran controversy.
He believes that congressfolk who toil on behalf of a foreign government should face the gravest legal consequences. The US Constitution is flawed, he says, in that it defines "treason" quite narrowly. From Article III:
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.
These words do not apply to a political figure who operates on behalf of a country which is not
a declared enemy. Giraldi clearly indicates that he would like our definition of "treason" expanded to include loyalty to any
Seems to me that such an expanded definition could get messy. For example, FDR's foes might have used it to squelch the Lend-Lease program. "Loyalty" can easily become one of those eye-of-the-beholder issues.
Nevertheless, I too have argued (in previous posts) that Article III doesn't go far enough. The secessionist movement bugs the hell out of me. I think we should expand our definition of "treason" to include any politician whose loyalty to a proposed breakaway nation trumps loyalty to the present U.S. government. At the very least, secession advocates should be forbidden from holding office.
In 2012, the Republican primaries included two candidates who had flirted with secession. One was Texas Governor Rick Perry
, who still seems interested in that dream.
The other, of course, was Ron Paul
. The guy Giraldi wanted to become President.
So, Phil...do you really, really, really
want to revise our fundamental definition of "treason"? Because I might countenance affixing the "traitor" label to congressfolk more loyal to a foreign flag than to the star-spangled banner -- but only
if the same expanded definition also includes "secession friendly" political figures.
Such as Ron Paul. And perhaps Phil Giraldi.