Silencing a Prescient Voiceby Representative Trent Franks
Posted on 2015-02-05
FRANKS of Arizona. Mr. Speaker, we have heard a great deal about
protocol this past week, and it all centers around the invitation by
the Speaker of this House to the Prime Minister of Israel to come and
speak to the body, as he has done twice before.
It is worth pointing out, Mr. Speaker, that Bibi Netanyahu is one of the most prescient voices that we have in the entire world to address some of the subjects and some of the dangers that face the United States of America, and yet this administration is caught up in a conundrum over protocol.
While it might be worth reminding this administration that ours is a government made up of three equal branches, it is even more important to remind this administration that, when Iran is pursuing a nuclear weapons capability with which to threaten the peace and security of the entire world, when ISIS and groups like it are slaughtering people the world over, when ISIS is crucifying and killing and torturing people in Iraq--when they are burning their prisoners alive in cages--this administration is caught up in protocol. Mr. Speaker, that is a profound distortion of priority.
Ironically, this administration, for all of its talk of protocol, not only violated protocol when it traded five Taliban leaders for Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, but it broke the law itself. This administration has repeatedly sought to unconstitutionally usurp the powers of the legislative branch by brash fiat. It chooses to listen to these mysterious voices of those who did not vote in our Nation's election. Its constitutional overreach is evidenced by Cuba, immigration, ObamaCare, and a number of others.
Let us put that litany aside for a moment and just consider the arrogance of this administration as it comes now to proclaim that the Speaker of this House has somehow broken protocol by inviting the Prime Minister of our most vital ally on Earth to speak on this floor.
Worse, Mr. Speaker, it has sought to go after and silence the guest speaker, himself. In hearing the visceral rhetoric of this White House, one would think our Speaker had invited the prime minister of an enemy nation instead of one of our best friends on the planet. Unfortunately, this administration's claims of breached protocol are an attempt to overshadow the real elephant in the room, and truth itself.
The actual outrage here is not about the Israeli elections, as some might say. It is not about the doomed diplomatic overtures of this administration. The real crisis and the real threat is a nuclear- capable Iran, and Prime Minister Netanyahu--with the greatest credentials on Earth related to this threat--in coming to speak to all of us is acting as a trusted ally should act. I hope this administration and this Congress and the American people will listen to him very carefully.
The true problem here, Mr. Speaker, is that an outspoken enemy of our Nation, one that is, indeed, the leading state sponsor of global Islamic terrorism, is actively pursuing nuclear weapons that could create the gravest of threats to the United States, Israel, and the entire free world.
How quickly we forget that Iran considers the United States of America the ``Great Satan.'' How quickly we forget that last year, on November 4, Iran, once again, celebrated ``Death to America Day,'' commemorating the 1979 seizure of the United States Embassy. How quickly we forget that ``death to America'' is the rallying cry of Hezbollah, which has been backed by Iran, and it launched attacks on Israel just last week, killing and wounding good men.
How quickly we forget that one of Iran's stated goals is ``wiping Israel off the map.'' How quickly we forget that Iran collaborates with anti-U.S. regimes in South America and is actively seeking to exploit our borders and, of course, this administration's complete inattention to them. How quickly we forget that Iran continues to cooperate with North Korea in the development of long-range missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads to the United States of America.
Mr. Speaker, is this administration so naive or, worse, so arrogant as to believe that we can have any type of credible, diplomatic agreement with the leadership of such a regime? I think it is embarrassing, Mr. Speaker, to the United States of America that this supposed breach of protocol has somehow permitted this administration through anonymous, yet somehow authoritative, sources to politically threaten the elected leader of our only democratic ally in the region--calling him names in the media and being vindictive in its every interaction with him. None of this salve for the administration's wounded ego has furthered the interests of the United States one iota. Ultimately, it has only diminished America's national security and Israel's right to defend herself.
Mr. Speaker, there are, unfortunately, only three things that will prevent Iran from eventually gaining nuclear weapons: one is a fundamental change of the regime in Iran; two is a direct military action to destroy their capability to build a nuclear weapons capability; or, finally, Mr. Speaker, it is the conviction in the minds of the jihadist leadership in Iran that military action will occur if that capability is not dismantled.
Mr. Speaker, indifference, cowardice, diplomacy--call it what you will, but in the end, ignorance, whether intentional or unintentional, is not a viable alternative to the truth. Along with so many others in this body and, really, in America, itself, I have every conviction that when Prime Minister Netanyahu speaks on the threat that Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons and its sponsorship of terrorism pose to global security, he will be speaking the truth. Once again, for the sake of America, for Israel, and for the free world, I pray that we all listen very carefully.
Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.