Monday, FNC “Tucker Carlson Tonight” host Tucker Carlson opened his program criticizing President Joe Biden’s so-called “counterterrorism” approach to Middle East foreign policy, which recently included airstrikes on Syria.
Carlson noted the phraseology used to describe the act, which still left a lot of unanswered questions.
Transcript as follows:
CARLSON: Just 36 days into a new administration, and already, Joe Biden has fulfilled a major campaign promise.
If you didn’t vote for him, it might be hard to admit this, but don’t worry, this is nothing that’s going to improve your life or the life of the United States. It’s nothing that’s going to make you freer or happier, help you drop 20 pounds or bring you closer to your family.
It’s nothing you can use to buy dinner. You’re not getting a stimulus check this week.
Your kids are not going back to school. You’re not getting a raise. You thought you might be, back on the campaign trail, Joe Biden promised low-wage workers will bump to 15 bucks an hour. Remember that? Sorry, not happening, not because hiking the minimum wage might eliminate jobs. That is a real argument, but it’s not relevant to what just happened.
The minimum wage isn’t going to 15 bucks because the Senate Parliamentarian wouldn’t allow it. Raising the minimum wage to that level would violate established procedure, the Parliamentarian said, and of course, the White House wanted no point, no part of violating procedure.
As Biden’s Chief of Staff Ron Klain put it, quote: “We’re going to honor the rules of the Senate and work within the system.”
Okay. Keep that in mind when they try to eliminate the filibuster or pack the Supreme Court or making D.C. a state.
In the meantime, though, no living wage for you. That’s one campaign promise that Joe Biden appears to have forgotten.
But the promise he remembered wasn’t made to you in the first place or to the country. It was made to defense contractors and neocon think tanks in Washington. Joe Biden promised them that once he took power, the United States would immediately bring war back to the Middle East, after a four-year respite. That really agitated people in D.C.
And when he did that, Biden said, he wouldn’t consult Congress or even the Senate Parliamentarian before he did it. He wouldn’t even pretend to quote, “work within the system,” he’d just do it, and he wasn’t kidding. On Thursday, he did it.
Biden sent F-15s to kill people in Syria. Now, no one in this country benefited from that, not even in the smallest, most theoretical way, and that in itself was deeply reassuring to the political class in Washington. They consider any attempt to improve this country a terrifying form of nationalism. Ooh, it scares them.
But the idea of killing people in a faraway place — thrilling.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): I do think it was important for the Biden administration to send a message, a very clear message early on that these attacks on our forces will not be tolerated.
REP. ELISSA SLOTKIN (D-MI): And we’re going to take a proportionate response that we’re going to respond, and we hit back at them. And I think it’s just sort of resetting expectations that if you hit at us, we’re going to punch back.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No one likes to talk about the fact that we have to protect ourselves, but that’s the national security reality and I think the Biden ministration understands it, and they’re acting accordingly.
MAX BOOT, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: I think that President Biden is pursuing a tough, but smart approach.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is it a mistake to target bases in Syria right now?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Actually, it was pretty smart. This is counterterrorism. So I don’t think the Biden administration needed new permission or authorization from the Congress.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CARLSON: Yes, he didn’t need permission. Listen carefully, America. Killing strangers in Syria was not pointless. You don’t know where Syria is, but it was quote “pretty smart” to do that. That’s the official word. It comes from experts who believe that Saddam had bio weapons and started a war on the basis of it.
It doesn’t matter. Thursday’s strike against Syria, they just told us was counterterrorism, and counterterrorism justifies all. Keep that in mind going forward. You don’t want counter-terrorism aimed at you. Let’s hope it never is.
In Syria, counterterrorism means at least 22 people died according to local reports. The Pentagon says only one person died. But who were these people in any case? Who was targeted?
The Biden administration says it targeted two militia that are aligned with Iran. Members of those groups allegedly fired a rocket into Iraq that killed an American contractor.
Let’s go meta for a second. You may be wondering why are there still American contractors in Iraq after almost two decades and no obvious return? And that’s a good question. Maybe we’ll address that some other time. Because here’s an even more amazing thing.
Both of the militia the Biden administration hit are part of something called the Popular Mobilization Forces. That’s a kind of umbrella group that is sponsored by the Iraqi government. Now, the Iraqi government itself is the creation of previous American administrations.
So in other words, if you’re following all of this, and you have been for 18 years, we are now defending Americans in Iraq from people we empowered in the first place to fix a disaster that was caused by our invasion.
That’s all counterterrorism. Got it? The snake eats its own tail.
Now if all of this seems demented to you, rest easy. You should know it was Joe Biden who did it. It wasn’t Donald Trump, it was Joe Biden. Therefore it’s fine. In fact, it’s good.
Here’s an actual tweet from a former Wall Street executive turned angry social media person called Amy Siskind, quote: “So different having military action under Biden. No middle school level threats on Twitter. Trust Biden and his team’s competence.” Trust Biden. It’s a kinder, gentler missile strike. Hilarious.
With Joe Biden in charge, buildings in Syria don’t collapse into rubble crushing the people inside. No. Those buildings simply disappear like distressed companies that people like Amy Siskind melted down for profit on Wall Street.
Naturally, because events like this do connect people in a certain way, David French who used to work at “National Review” was also excited about this. War makes David French feel powerful and alive. One of the few things that does. But only when the right people wage it.
So three years ago — and we’re keeping track of this — David French was distressed by the idea that Donald Trump might attack Syria without permission. Quote, “If Trump strikes Syria without congressional approval, his Syrian policy will be both imprudent and unconstitutional.” That was April of 2018. We were totally opposed to striking Syria at the time. But not because it was unconstitutional, it was just pointless.
Last week, though, David French looked at dozens of people dying in Syria and sighed with satisfaction. “Good,” he wrote, then he went back to writing essays about what a fine Christian he is.
Maybe because she reads David French, Jen Psaki came around, too. She was once opposed to bombing Syria without permission. Here she was on Thursday.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
JEN PSAKI, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The President is sending an unambiguous message that he is going to act to protect Americans. And when threats are posed, he has the right to take an action at the time and in the manner of his choosing.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: Oh, yes, it wasn’t long ago, she was telling us it was totally a violation of international law to bomb Syria without congressional approval. Now, she is telling us Joe Biden is going to act to protect Americans.
Now you’re not supposed to notice that what was done to, quote “protect Americans” who are still stuck languishing in Iraq, 18 years after the invasion, if we’re going to protect them, why are we making them stay there? What are they doing there?
And once again, because it’s the only question that ever matters, how is this helping anyone in this country or by the way in any country? Well, it’s not, obviously, and to their credit, neo-cons have stopped pretending that it is.
What this is really about, Joe Biden once explained in public, is helping our Kurdish partners. Here’s Joe Biden in 2019 fretting aloud that Donald Trump might withdraw American troops from Syria.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN (D), THEN CANDIDATE FOR PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: By precipitously withdrawing a small number of American Special Forces in Syria, Trump managed in one fell swoop to betray our Kurdish partners, who helped defeat ISIS, to create a humanitarian crisis with innocent civilians, and ethnic and religious minority communities caught in the crossfire.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CARLSON: The best part was: religious minority communities. We’re attacking the Assad government, which is the only government in the entire Middle East that’s protected the most ancient of religious minorities, the Christian community. They’ve been slaughtered, except in territory that Assad controls.
But he’s a brutal dictator. That doesn’t count.
But of course, we are doing all of this for our Kurdish partners. Did you know we had Kurdish partners? Did you want them? What exactly have we partnered to do? No one answers those questions. Don’t sweat the details, assured the Democrats.
The party that runs Baltimore and East St. Louis has a handle on this. They’re going to make the Middle East a much better place. Just like Hillary Clinton improved Libya. Now, it has permanent war and slave markets, and they’re going to make you much safer in the process. It’s called counterterrorism. It can’t be bad.
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor