In his weekly column for the Daily Beast, conservative Matt Lewis stated that Republicans are about to make the same mistakes they made when backed former President George W. Bush's war on Saddam Hussein which, in the long run, turned the White House over to Barack Obama.
According to the columnist, President Donald Trump is using the same ugly rhetoric that the Bush administration deployed in the run up to the disastrous war on Baghdad, including bogus patriotic flag-waving and accusations of coddling terrorists.
"Is it just me, or is some of the rhetoric being bandied about by Republicans reminiscent of the run-up to the Iraq war?" he began. "We see it when Lindsey Graham says that Senators Mike Lee and Rand Paul are “empowering the enemy.” It’s evident when Nikki Haley suggests that Democrats are "mourning" the death of Qassem Soleimani—and when Rep. Doug Collins says Dems are “in love with terrorists.” And we see it when Liz Cheney says the War Powers Resolution dishonors every member of America’s armed forces. We see it when Lou Dobbs compares Mike Lee to Benedict Arnold."
According to Lewis, skepticism is in order with regard to the killing of Iranian military leader Qassem Suelimani based on a claim of an "imminent threat" for the Trump administration.
"It’s appropriate to question whether Soleimani’s existence posed an imminent threat or whether Congress should have at least been consulted," he suggested. "Further, it’s legitimate to question the wisdom and prudence of killing him, even as almost everyone (yes, even Democrats) concedes he was a bad guy. We still don’t know the long-term ramifications. Reports that a Ukrainian jet taking off in Tehran might have been downed by an Iranian missile adds even more volatility. We find ourselves in a precarious situation where some rando Iranian lieutenant could accidentally start WWIII."
"The irony, of course, is that after initially supporting the Iraq war, Donald Trump has been highly critical of George W. Bush, going so far as to suggest congressional Democrats should have impeached him over the Iraq War," he continued. "It’s also ironic that the same intelligence community that facilitated the killing of Soleimani (and the same intel community that allegedly said doing so was urgently needed to prevent future attacks) has been the focus of so much Trump condemnation."
Writing, "There’s no telling where this will go," Lewis continued, "Trump’s foreign policy is incoherent and inconsistent, so he could revert. But there is a possibility that we are entering a new election-year phase... When he predicted that Barack Obama would start a war with Iran in order to help insure his own re-election, was Trump really telling us that is what he would have done if he were in Obama’s shoes?"
With that he gave a warning to Republicans who are uncritically backing the president's latest gambit in light of trying to avoid impeachment.
"If you think the 'Dear Leader' mentality was creepy when it was merely advancing a self-serving cult of personality, just imagine how dangerous it can be when employed by a commander in chief seeking re-election as a 'war-time president,'" he concluded.
You can read the whole column here (subscription required).