I’ll give you three guesses and the first two don’t count. Wait… you still need a hint? It rhymes with “rump.”
Yes, Virginia Senator (and failed Vice Presidential candidate) Tim Kaine sat down yesterday with CNN’s John Berman to talk about the recent attack on a major Saudi Arabian oil refinery. Given all of the finger-pointing that’s been going on, surely he would be able to shed some light on things and offer a bit of clarity, right? Of course. And he quickly did, pinning the blame on Donald Trump for creating an atmosphere of war by continually “provoking” Iran with sanctions. (Free Beacon)
Sen. Tim Kaine (D., Va.) said during a Wednesday interview with CNN host John Berman that Iran’s recent attacks on Saudi Arabian oil fields were triggered by United States sanctions. Berman then wondered whether Kaine was “victim-blaming” by saying the attacks were provoked.
The exchange began when Kaine told Berman that he worries President Donald Trump will take military action to “protect Saudi oil,” which he said could begin a war that would be based on “fundamental mistruths.”
“What mistruths?” Berman said.
Kaine said that the United States is “provoking Iran” because of sanctions. He added that this was just the latest provocation in a pattern of United States aggression against Iran, most notably pulling out of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement.
It goes on for quite a while from here, mostly downhill. Here’s the video of this rather remarkable exchange.
It’s tough to write this off as anything other than rampant Trump Derangement Syndrome. Or is Kaine getting a little past his best Sell By Date? He’s calling for us to “return to diplomacy” and stop “provoking” Iran with sanctions. But guess what? Sanctions are the diplomatic alternative to war. We’re putting economic pressure on them, not military pressure. That’s sort of the definition, Senator.
Of course, that White House isn’t doing itself any favors on this front when it comes to recent public statements. Pompeo called the attack an “act of war,” this week, which might not have helped matters. But it’s hard to knock the Secretary of State too much for simply stating an obvious truth. When you send a cruise missile over the border of a foreign nation and blow up some of their infrastructure, that’s pretty much an act of war.
Meanwhile, the Iranian Foreign Minister was on CNN when I got up this morning and he was totally beclowning himself. He was denying any Iranian involvement in the attack and trying to blame it on the Houthi rebels in Yemen. Thankfully the journalist doing the interview had the spine to ask him the obvious question. Where in the world would the bedraggled Houthis get their hands on a cruise missile?
And even if they did, how would they launch and control it? We’re not talking about a truckload of shoulder-fired Stinger rocket launchers here. Firing and controlling a cruise missile requires some massive supporting infrastructure. Iran has those capabilities and right now they’re just flipping the bird at the entire world. If Tim Kaine is looking for someone to blame, perhaps he should have a chat with the Iranians.