Another President of Regime Change – The American Conservative


US President Joe Biden meets with Polish President Andrzej Duda on March 25, 2022 in Rzeszów, Poland. (Photo by Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images)

“At every crucial moment,” the senator said, warning that the worst would never happen “[the president] chose a moderation and advice… I believe he will continue to do so … The President has made it clear that war is neither imminent nor inevitable.”

Speaking on the floor in October 2002, then-Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware would go ahead with voting to give President George W. Bush the ultimate power: permission to wage war. Bush accepted Biden’s offer – co-signed by Senators John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, Charles Schumer, Harry Reid, Chris Dodd and supermajorities in both houses – five months later.

By the summer of that year, the war in Iraq was a transparent disaster.

American elites, particularly the ruling Republicans, were determined to drown out the news of a brutal insurgency that was killing American men and women on an almost daily basis that the forces of evil were indeed triumphing. Watch out for those sad fate of the Hussein family, done by New Year’s Eve 2004, not that the search for the warlike weapons of destruction concluded that the whole thing was a sham up until that January; Don’t look at the bodies of American contractors hung from a bridge in Fallujah in April 2004.

The idea that the people of the world actually could want an American-style alternative to politics and consumerism, or that we actually didn’t know all that much about conflict in another world, was laughed at as (to use a 2000s term) noob analysis, a crazy throwback thing from capitalism h history. Britney Spears, an emissary of this perspective, told TV host Tucker Carlson at the time, “We should just trust our president with every decision he makes.”

Since the parallel to today’s error – and that is the current American course towards Russia and Ukraine: a red light error – in trusting the President, the parallel to the noughties collapses by a meter.

Because obviously against Ms. Spears’ advice, President Joe Biden’s own team, doesn’t “just” trust the president in every decision he makes.

The White House immediately dismissed Biden’s fanfare call for regime change in the Kremlin this weekend – “For God’s sake, this man can’t stay in power,” concluded 46 his speech in Poland. A senior government official said: “The President’s point was that you cannot allow Putin to exercise power over his neighbors or the region. He wasn’t talking about Putin’s power in Russia or regime change.”

Donald Trump is often called a liar, but outside of “fifteen days to slow a spread,” I’m not sure his White House has told a more consequential lie than this world-insulting one the Biden administration has just tried.

as AsiaTimes Spengler columnist David Goldman observed, “Biden blurted out what admin officials said privately when Niall Ferguson leaked to Bloomberg last week. I can’t run it back.”

Summing up his reporting, Ferguson of Stanford said: “As I said last week, the Biden administration appears to have decided to use the war in Ukraine to bring about regime change in Russia, rather than attempting to end the war in Ukraine as quickly as possible possible to finish. Biden just said it out loud. This is a highly risky strategy.”

Here the Iraq parallel continues.

For many Republicans, Iraq was “Operation Unfinished Business,” retaliation for Saddam’s apparent assassination attempt on retired first President Bush, and an itch for those who felt the US should have marched on Baghdad in 1991 during the first Gulf War. Vladimir Putin takes a similar bogeyman position for leading Democrats, many of whom unironically still believe the Kremlin has anointed Trump president.

Biden has played a contradictory figure during his half-century in power — a self-proclaimed Democrat in tuxedos in the year of the dripping hippies, a real CIA Stan during the Southern progressive years of Jimmy Carter, then against the first Gulf War, then the second Bush man early on as Senate Foreign Relations chairman, then a Machiavellian, a would-be President against the war, then an Old Guard vice president and now a Democrat establishment president who was not the first choice of the Democratic establishment.

Biden’s move in Afghanistan last summer seemed to raise the possibility that the Biden presidency would be an interim government that ended some of America’s wars. Because this was a capstone, or maybe just because he didn’t give a damn about his age, he could get away with it.

This was what the conservative right and the progressive left hoped for The was the real Joe Biden, a throwback to the days when he and then-President Barack Obama were peaceful voices of caution within their own administration (how did that kind of staff come about again?).

He has real Americana charm, but Biden’s career, rightly understood, has not been at the center of the American electorate, but at the center of the Democratic Party establishment. After all, that’s how the scrappy, middle-class white man with mediocre credentials eventually rose to the presidency and led the Credentialists party.

Though logorrheic — the young version could speak — both young and old Biden would never rock the boat. And so it is when America feels (wrongly, I think) that it can surgically deliver a mortal blow to the great Satan of the Democratic Party, Vladimir Putin.

“You don’t have to do this,” Obama once told Biden, trying to dissuade him from running for president in 2020. Now, as then, Biden obviously feels he is doing it.

America’s new president has abandoned a misguided crusade in Central Asia, only to launch a new, much more dangerous one in Europe, while (once again) untying America’s real enemy in Beijing. Which, unfortunately, is another hallmark of Biden’s strong career.

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