Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Murtaza Hussain — Scott Walker Foreign Policy Guru Called for Nuking Muslim Countries, Mass Deportations

At an event earlier this month to formally launch his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker cited a man in the crowd named Kevin Hermening as a formative influence on his foreign policy thinking. Hermening, a former U.S. Marine who was held hostage during the 1979 Iranian revolution, is a longtime friend of Walker, and has been described in press reports as “the face of Walker’s foreign policy.” The governor has repeatedly cited Hermening as a major influence on his worldview, including his opposition to the Obama administration’s recent nuclear deal with Iran.
But Walker’s choice of Hermening as a foreign policy counselor raises serious questions about Walker’s understanding of the issues. Hermening has publicly advocated conducting nuclear strikes against the capital cities of Muslim-majority countries, as well as the mass deportation of undocumented immigrants, particularly those of “Middle Eastern descent” from the United States.
In 2001, Hermening wrote an op-ed in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel calling for a response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks that would include “the destruction of the capitals of Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Sudan and Yemen,” unless the governments of those countries unequivocally agreed to help kill Osama bin Laden. “Every military response must be considered, including the use of nuclear weapons,” he wrote. In his commentary Hermening also called upon the United States to erect security fences “along the entire perimeter of the United States,” as well as deport “every illegal alien and immigrant, with a focus on removing those of Middle Eastern descent.” ….
Walker responded to Bice’s column on Monday. “I’ll speak for myself,” he told the Journal Sentinel. “My policy is very clear, and it’s not aligned with what he said in that particular column.” Walker told the newspaper that he does not consider Hermening an adviser, even though his campaign has featured him prominently. Walker’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment from The Intercept.…
The Intercept
Scott Walker Foreign Policy Guru Called for Nuking Muslim Countries, Mass Deportations
Murtaza Hussain


Matt Franko said...

John the head of Iran just said that (again) the other day..... rsp

Peter Pan said...

US policy in the Middle East is to support a series of civil wars that kill hundreds of thousands of muslims with no end in sight.

John said...


Ayatollah Khamanei declared that Iran's foreign policy should be that millions of innocent christians should be murdered and entire capitals should be razed to the ground for no reason, and the media didn't report it? Perhaps I missed it, but I didn't see a report anywhere.

In any case, if Iran really wanted to murder millions of people, it wouldn't have given up its civilian nuclear programme and rocket programme. Or indeed it would, but instead initiate instead a nuclear weapons programme and an ICBM capacity to deliver the warheads. Other than the mildly amusing Great Satan and Little Satan stuff, Iran is restrained in its rhetoric and amazingly restrained in its foreign relations - it's never attacked a country and is going out of its way to assuage a US which knows full well that Iran is a threat to no one other than to Iranians, hardly a US foreign policy priority.

Walker won't get the nomination, but Jeb Bush has a good shot. Unlike Khamanei and his mad mullahs, Jeb and his mad neocon druids want permanent war and permanent bloodshed to offer at the altar of the Pentagon. As a friend of mine says, it comes to something when unelected religious fanatics are less dangerous than democratically elected politicians in liberal societies.

Roger Erickson said...

"No need to wonder what the reaction would be if a respected political figure from the muslim world said that millions of christians should be murdered and entire capitals in Europe and North America levelled to the ground had a group of christians attacked, say, the Petronas Towers."

And gods forbid some Catholic blows up a Federal building in Oklahoma City. :(


Matt Franko said...




"Death to America,” he responded. “Of course yes, death to America, because America is the original source of this pressure.”

If we had competent/qualified leadership in the US, they would not be running all around saying "we're out of money!" and this guy would be at room temperature within 24 hours along with anyone else within a few blocks of his location...

Roger Erickson said...

Tell that to Mossadegh.


Not to mention those that died in the Iranian Famine (courtesy of Brits)



All pawns in some rich people's games ... just like us.

Matt Franko said...

Roger don't tell me the "Brits" sprayed Roundup on all the crops in Iran?

Unknown said...


What did the Iranians ever do to Americans that was as bad as US helping Saddam use chemical weapons to kill thousands of Iranians in the Iran-Iraq war? The answer is of course, nothing. We call Iran the "axis of evil", how is that any different or worse than them calling us the Great Satan? Again, its not. So I'm not sure what basis you have for your hatred of Iranians.


Matt Franko said...

Auburn there is a difference between saying a certain group of nations is evil or a nation is like Satan, blah, blah... vs a leader saying "death to ______ nation!" ... that is a threatening statement coming directly from the recognized leader of a nation...

This shouldn't be tolerated, our inaction in this instance is just another typical display of a basic lack of self-respect by our current crop of alleged "leaders"... just as bad as "we're out of money!" or "we're borrowing from our grandchildren!" or any other of their weak BS...


Roger Erickson said...

History has shown that it's always a mistake to try to collectively punish whole cultures or mass populations for the frictions of their transient politicians, dictators or other "leaders."

Matt, just read about Churchill here.


He was, of course, connected to the WWI Iran debacle too.

John said...


This "Death to America" stuff is understood by everybody in international relations to be internal politics to keep the competing factions inside the Iranian government from claiming that the mullahs have gone soft, not a threat to the United States. A lot of politics is internal, not external, and it says a great deal that what is clearly internal politics is used by outside powers as threats to their security.

Meanwhile, it is also understood by all that when the United States, United Kingdom, France or any other powerful country say "all options are on the table" then that is a genuine threat usually backed up with extreme violence.

Iranian bluster is understood to be just that. It has never attacked any of its neighbours, has a defensive posture, has a tiny military and is known for its diplomatic overtures. And anyway, given the less than glorious US history regarding Iran, a bit of name calling is the least one expects: Mossadegh, the Shah, Saddam Hussein's US-backed invasion, the US-directed chemical weapons use, the US entering the Iran-Iraq war on Saddam Hussein' side, a US destroyer shooting down an Iranian airliner in Iranian waters, the sanctions, etc.

All this "Death to America" stuff is no more threatening than Djibouti or Bhutan declaring war on the world. Or a toddler threatening to beat senseless a team of Navy Seals.

Unknown said...


For crying out loud we had a republican presidential candidate singing about how we should "bomb, bomb, Iran". He got 60 million votes and we actually have the ability to bomb Iran. The ayatollah has no ability to kill or even hurt in any significant way the USA. If anything, we've committed far worse atrocities against Iran than they've ever done to harm us. So I'm still not sure what your problem is in this case.

Unknown said...

And Bush was the president aka the recognized leader of our country and he said Iran was part of the axis of EVIL during the freaking state of the union. Khomeni calls us satan and our president called them evil, what the hell is the difference? There is none except for the fact that we actually have the capacity to destroy Iran and they cant do anything to us. So what Bush did is way worse then what the ayatollah said IMHO.

John said...


Excellent replies. Why anyone believes Iran to be a threat to the United States is a total mystery. But then it wasn't that long ago that Cuba was considered a threat to US national security, to the hilarity of everyone in central and south America and the bemusement of the rest of the planet.

It's like Greece being considered a threat to the EZ. The truth is the exact opposite.

Matt Franko said...

Auburn I said above the difference is the threat of "death".... he can call us Satan all day long no one cares... if he threatens "death" to us he should be immediately confronted at demanded to recount his statements and if not we send in the cruise missiles with cluster bomb payloads at his next rally.... imo...

And I didnt support McCain in the primaries. ... iirc I voted for Romney even though he had already conceded to McLame. ....


John said...

Matt, by your standards:

1. When the US overthrew the Iranian parliamentary democracy and installed a brutal dictatorship, the Iranians out of "self-respect" should have levelled the entire United States or at the very least tried to overthrow US democracy and install a dictatorship amenable to Iranian interests.

2. When the US entered the Iran-Iraq war on Saddam Hussein's side and directed the chemical weapons that gassed to death thousands of Iranians, Iran out of "self-respect" should have similarly gassed US cities.

3. When the US blew an Iranian airliner out of the sky over Iranian territorial waters, the Iranians out of "self-respect" should have responded similarly or as a warning that such behaviour is unacceptable blew as many US airliners out of the sky as possible.

4. Had McCain become president, the Iranians out of "self-respect" should have obliterated as much of the United States as conceivably possible because they heard McCain sing "bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran".

5. When the US invaded Iraq on a knowing lie, Iran should have taken note and bombed US cities as a defensive measure because they had been informed that they were part of the axis of evil and would be dealt with in the same way as Iraq.

Do you agree? If not, why not?

Tom Hickey said...

Death to America has its own Wikipedia entry. It goes back to 1979 and the overthrow of the Shah by the Iranian revolutionaries.

"The 1953 Iranian coup d'état, known in Iran as the 28 Mordad coup, was the overthrow of the democratically elected Prime Minister of Iran Mohammad Mosaddegh on 19 August 1953, orchestrated by the United Kingdom (under the name "Operation Boot") and the United States (under the name TPAJAX Project)"

The Shah had run a very repressive regime, which the Iranian people associated with the US and UK. Then the US imposed sanctions on Iran resulting in widespread misery in the country.

And anyone wonders why they are still screaming, "Death to America"?

Roger Erickson said...

"a toddler threatening to beat senseless a team of Navy Seals"


Thanks for adding a bit of sanity to the conversations, John.

Peter Pan said...

Now I understand the mindset of trigger happy cops.

Tom Hickey said...

"a toddler threatening to beat senseless a team of Navy Seals"


The supreme leader is doing at least three things here:

First, he is sending a message about where he stands. He is signaling he realizes that the US not acting out of good will but in its own interests. He reminding Obama and his strategists that Iran can turn the Middle East into a hell hole that is not in the US, as well as make it generally tougher for the US in global affairs. It's not like Iran doesn't hold any cards in this game. Obama and his strategist already know this, of course, which is why it is a reminder.

Thirdly, he is talking to the folks back home. He has to keep the Revolutionary Guard in line, for example. He may be the supreme leader, but he still has to deal with factions.

Matt Franko said...

John if a giant hole opened up in the earth and swallowed Iran (or even the entire MENA for that matter) overnight I and imo a majority of Americans would still turn on SportsCenter first thing in the morning to check out the highlights. ..

This is the reality here.... rsp

John said...

Tom: "It's not like Iran doesn't hold any cards in this game..."

That's right, but only in the same way as no one is a total pushover. Vietnam didn't pose a threat to anybody, but that isn't to say it couldn't put up a fight if push came to shove. Or the Afghans (Soviet invasion or US invasion). Or the Boers. Or...

Roger Erickson said...

A little more humility from all people, on all sides of unnecessary arguments, is always necessary.

We can do better than act out being divided & conquered.

For example, for a while it looked like the Greeks told the Troika where to go.
then the troika arranged betrayal of yet another revolution

Has Iran's experience been much different than Greece's in substance, regardless of the different details? Are these all example of something that Marriner Eccles said?

Marriner Eccles gloomy last speech, 1977:
"... the wrong road was taken every time we had a chance to alter course ... "

Roger Erickson said...

the best humor occurs when it's true

Pentagon Concludes America Not Safe Unless It Conquers the World

John said...

Roger, I undermine my dream of moving to Santa Fe, New Mexico, every time I post to this blog!

The MNE crew will be cordially invited to join my Santa Fe Invitation Cricket XI.

Tom Hickey said...

Actually, Vietnam's Gen. Giap defeated the US ignominiously just like he defeated the French ignominiously.

The US defeated Saddam and the Taliban but neither Iraq or Afghanistan can be counted as wins for the US. The US public now believes that the cost was not worth it.

The only successes the US has had is in provoking coups.

Iran is on a completely different scale. The stakes would be hugely higher and no American president would be stupid enough to send the number of boots on the ground to do the job of subduing Iran and occupying it. Not going to happen.

Aerial campaigns are punishing but not decisive. If the US attacked Iran, Iran has already signaled that it will shut down the Straits of Hormuz for starters.

On 29 June 2008, the commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guard, Mohammad Ali Jafari, said that if either Israel or the United States attacked Iran, it would seal off the Strait of Hormuz to wreak havoc in the oil markets. This followed more ambiguous threats from Iran's oil minister and other government officials that an attack on Iran would result in turmoil in the world's oil supply.

Vice Admiral Kevin Cosgriff, commander of the U.S. 5th Fleet stationed in Bahrain across the Persian Gulf from Iran, warned that such Iranian action by would be considered an act of war, and the U.S. would not allow Iran to hold hostage nearly a third of the world's oil supply.[8]

On 8 July 2008, Ali Shirazi, a mid-level clerical aide to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was quoted by the student news agency ISNA as telling the Revolutionary Guards, "The Zionist regime is pressuring White House officials to attack Iran. If they commit such a stupidity, Tel Aviv and U.S. shipping in the Persian Gulf will be Iran's first targets and they will be burned."[9]

John said...

"The stakes would be hugely higher and no American president would be stupid enough to send the number of boots on the ground to do the job of subduing Iran and occupying it. Not going to happen."

Boots on the ground are probably off the table, but neocons live in their own make believe world and nothing is past them. In 2001 General Wesley Clark recounts how the Bush administration was planning attacking seven countries, including Iran and democratic Lebanon: "...we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran."

Would air power alone be enough to "take out" the countries listed, and the result may be worse than the current situation (ISIS, Al Qaeda, Al Nusra, etc).

Jeb and Hilary seems nutty enough to try it. Humanity's best hope may hinge on the man from Vermont.

John said...

Roger, I pretty much agree with you on Sanders. He's not as progressive as he makes out and on some issues he's awful. the longer he can stay in the campaign, the more Sanders will move to the hard right "middle ground".

Given the options available, however, Sanders would make a less dangerous occupant of the White House than Clinton or Bush, who are clearly semi-psychotic at best.

All the other candidates don't have a hope in hell. Christie may yet have an outside chance. Trump won't get the nomination, but he'll have lots of fun humiliating his fellow candidates until he can't be bothered to continue or a number of paternity tests need his devoted attention.

I shudder to think what the punishment would be fitting if justice were ever meted out to the UK: the world's grievances are long and horrible. Rather than beat a dignified retreat, apologise for our past crimes and gracefully accept our diminished role in the world, the farce continues and with no end in sight. We strut around and boast about our prowess like a pathetic Ron Jeremy, while the rest of the world justifiably gazes at us with pity and contempt, before collapsing in gales of laughter.

John said...

Roger, nice article by Jeffrey St.Clair over at CounterPunch:

Favourite line: "Pull the Sandersmobile into the garage for inspection, pop the hood and you’ll soon discover the vacuous truth: no engine, just an exhaust pipe, pumping out rhetoric. So much talk, so little action. The deeper you look at Sanders, the less substance you see."