Should Kerry resign and/or face charges over "aid and comfort" to Iran?

Democratic National Convention via AP

After the explosive news broke yesterday about John Kerry allegedly ratting out Israel to Iran (which the New York Times tried to bury 21 paragraphs into a 23 paragraph article), questions began bubbling to the surface in terms of just how bad and potentially criminal these alleged actions were. For the record, Kerry is now denying that it happened, so we’ll stick with “alleged” at least for now. We’re not technically “at war” with Iran, though that possibility always seems to be only a few steps down a very rocky road. But at the same time, it’s been proven beyond any doubt that Iran’s roaming militias have attacked American military installations, killed any number of our troops and kidnapped our citizens. They certainly qualify as an “enemy” as opposed to simply being an adversary. So what, if anything, is to be done about this, assuming it turns out to be true? Mike Pompeo has proposed that a thorough investigation be launched, which seems like a reasonable and prudent first step. (Free Beacon)

Former secretary of state Mike Pompeo and Republican foreign policy leaders in Congress are demanding a formal investigation into John Kerry following revelations he informed Iranian leaders about covert Israeli military operations.

A leaked audio recording of Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif, who worked closely with Kerry when the 2015 nuclear accord was negotiated, catches the Iranian official claiming the former Obama administration secretary of state informed him about at least 200 Israeli strikes on Iranian military positions in Syria. That Kerry shared these intimate details “to his astonishment,” according to the New York Times, suggests Kerry may have been disclosing classified information. It would also represent a stunning betrayal of America’s closest Middle East ally. Israel relies on the United States to protect shared intelligence from its top regional enemy.

The revelation is already generating calls for Kerry, the special presidential envoy for climate, to resign from the Biden administration and face a congressional investigation for possibly spilling highly classified secrets to one of America’s leading enemies.

As soon as we learned about this, Ed Morrissey described Kerry’s actions as something that looks like “an actual crime by a high-ranking US government official.” Ed isn’t alone in that sentiment. It took less than a day for critics – primarily among Republicans – to describe the alleged conversations as the leaking of highly classified information and something that could cause significant damage to one of America’s closest allies. Is this a federal crime? Or was it just a lapse in judgment that could be swept away if John Kerry simply resigned from the Biden administration? Over at the New York Post, Josh Hammer writes that if this isn’t treason, it’s certainly something that smells awfully close to it.

[I]f confirmed, what an utter, shambolic disgrace it is. The man who was then serving as America’s leading diplomat on the global stage betrayed our Israeli allies with reckless abandon, opting instead to buttress a rogue jihadist state and its barbarous Syrian satrapy. Rational American allies the world over will respond to this perfidy by trusting the U.S. much less with sensitive military intelligence. And for what end, other than the perverse, self-serving satisfaction of Team Obama’s “echo chamber” miscreants?

The American Left frequently responds with bemusement or defiance when it is accused of harboring a barely concealed anti-American animus. With this latest example of the full depth of leftist anti-Israel zealotry and pro-Iran sycophancy, perhaps liberals will respond next time with less confusion. In the interim, John Kerry has helped solidify his odious legacy as a dunderhead par excellence, at best — and a traitorous anti-Western ideologue, at worst.

The phrase “if confirmed” is an important one here. Let’s keep in mind (as I already mentioned) that Kerry is flatly denying that these conversations ever took place.

I would remind everyone that the leaked recording doesn’t contain the former Secretary of State’s voice at any point. It’s simply a recording of Javad Zarif saying that Kerry told him these things while bemoaning the fact that the Republican Guard effectively runs Iran’s foreign policy. It’s fair to ask why Zarif would say such a thing during an ostensibly private conversation if they weren’t true, but this is Iran we’re talking about here. The Iranian government loves stirring up trouble for the United States in any way that it can. It’s not difficult to picture Zarif smacking his lips as he watches a member of the fledgling Biden administration being grilled and possibly expelled, casting doubt on our competence to carry out negotiations with their terrorist-sponsor state.

But at the same time, John Kerry was a key player in Barack Obama’s America-apologist team that wanted to make nice with Iran despite that nation’s proven track record of awfulness and obvious nuclear ambitions. Is it really so difficult to believe that he would have tried to cozy up to Zarif by dishing some dirt on the one nation that Iran seeks to drive from the face of the Earth? Personally, I think we need more information before we start shoveling dirt onto Kerry’s political coffin. The problem is determining how such information, assuming it exists, could be unearthed.