My god, Dennis Kucinich supported Qaddafi?

Well, no, but that’s kind of what Al Jazeera is hinting at.

“On the floor of the intelligence chief’s office lay an envelope addressed to Gadaffi’s son Saif Al-Islam.  Inside, I found what appears to be a summary of a conversation between . . . Kucinich, who publicly opposed U.S. policy on Libya, and an intermediary for the Libyan leader’s son.

“It details a request by the congressman for information he needed to lobby U.S. lawmakers to suspend their support for the Libyan National Transitional Council and to put an end to NATO airstrikes.

“According to the document, Kucinich wanted evidence of corruption within the NTC and, like Welch, any possible links within the rebel ranks to al-Qaeda.”

Admittedly, that looks pretty awful. But it’s important to look at a) motivation, and b) Denny’s response.

Al Jazeera found a document written by a Libyan bureaucrat to other Libyan bureaucrats. All it proves is that the Libyans were reading the Washington Post, and read there about my efforts to stop the war. I can’t help what the Libyans put in their files. My opposition to the war in Libya, even before it formally started, was public and well known. My questions about the legitimacy of the war, who the opposition was, and what NATO was doing, were also well known and consistent with my official duties. Any implication I was doing anything other than trying to bring an end to an unauthorized war is fiction.

My bias for Kucinich is well known, but even looking through that it appears that the purpose wasn’t to “support Qaddafi” so much as to stop fomenting a war. Big difference. DK himself denies his fingers were actually on the document in the first place, and given quite literally everything we know about the guy, to suggest that he out and out supports a dictator requires one to ignore his history.

That said, I’m not looking forward to the public smearing the right-wing is about to throw at him. Politico is already leading the charge. The headline, picture, and lead paint a picture of Kucinich as a toady for Qaddafi. The rest of the article? Admits that he was on a diplomatic mission, didn’t even go to Libya, and that’s all. But don’t worry, they’ll ramp up the rhetoric soon enough.

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4 responses to “My god, Dennis Kucinich supported Qaddafi?

  1. If this is true, his actions should be defended for a few reasons. Chief amongst them;

    1) His fears about the NTC are justifiable as it came out this week that the head of the Libyan Rebel defenses was once tortured by the CIA because of his direct links to Al-Qaeda (not the most trustworthy group I’m told).

    2) NATO, a defense program which resembles the UN, in so far that we pay a huge disproportional share of the bill, further stretches out our defense budget and resources in a traditionally unstable area (Don’t kid yourself and say the US doesn’t have some kind of direct military involvement near a huge oil field and well within our economic sphere of influence)

    3) Just because we have an inheirent “love for the underdog” and own history of rebellion, does NOT mean we should support every single revolt. Too often, when we hear the ‘buzz words’ like Freedom, Oppression, Revolution the Old Glory waving in our blood boils up and unfortunatly drowns our brains. We become blinded by irrational patriotism to the point where our logic concerning the economic, social, and political rammifications for the long run are forgotten completely.

  2. 3a) While I do agree with the push for democracy and freedom for all, I know better. Meaning these groups, as well intentioned their retoric sounds, is more likely to seize power, corrupt, repeat what they hated. (quiz: name a revolution in the Middle East that turned into a democratic system that lasted for more than 10 years without turning into some kind of Oligarchy…It’s okay, I’ll wait.). A part of the world where tribalism still means something is in my opinion probably not the best ground for the seeds of democracy to be sewn.

    4) This is my favorite one: I can’t think of any Americans off the top of my head who gave two shits about Lybia before 8 months ago. After the 80s the US policy regarding Lybia was still stern (trade restrictions, ect…) but in the modern era tensions had been cooling, I cite the Condie Rice visits to the Lybian capital, Gadaffi’s youngest son attending college in California not later than 6 months ago, and Gaddaffi’s anti Al-Qaeda stance.  Believe it or not, Gaddaffi was a HUGE anti-Al Qaeda figure (almost certainly because he didnt want any challenge to his power, but hey, still was opposed). Granted, he’s a huge piece if crap, but in the last 10 years he was more for uniting Africa as a continent politically (to keep western powers from exploiting resources) than he was for any kind of Muslim world domination.

  3. In closing, good for the rebels for striving to live free. Everyone deserves to live free and happy lives. But don’t blame American politicians for looking out for the best interest of America. And don’t act so shocked when we get caught playing two way games in the international political arena. It’s the burden of being at the top of the mountain and a necessary evil of maintaining power and influence.

  4. I can’t think of any current U.S. politician, other than U.S. Congresswoman Barbara Lee, whose positions have been a consistently principled as have those of Dennis Kucinich. As for popular US support for the Libyan rebels – why does it feel about as principled and as deep as “Dancing with the Stars?”

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