Representative Confronts American Empire on House Floor

Editor's note: After a week that saw Democrats cave to the White House in the worst possible way on Iraq, we thought this speech, offered on the House floor by Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wa., last Wednesday, was worth highlighting. In a brief, five-minute commentary, McDermott does something almost unheard of in Washington: He looks at an issue in its larger historical context instead of pretending it just sprung up overnight like mushrooms after a rainfall.

Mr. Speaker:

This president and vice president have vowed to repeat the mistakes of history, and they have put into motion a plan to do just that in Iran, even as the House is about to send the president a box of blank checks for Iraq, against the will of the American people.

The history is worth knowing.

In 1953, the United States and United Kingdom launched Operation Ajax, a covert CIA operation to destabilize and remove the democratically elected government of Iran, including then Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh.

Why? Oil.

Under Mossadegh, the Iranian government decided to reclaim Iran's rightful ownership of its national oil treasure, which had been exclusively controlled by the British who were taking 85 percent of the profits.

Oh, and by the way, the U.K. also kept the books secret, merely telling Iran what its 15 percent take was.

As soon as Mossadegh began to reclaim Iran's oil treasure, it was all over. Operation Ajax was set into motion.

The U.S. embassy in Tehran provoked phony internal Iranian dissent, while the Brits engineered an Iranian financial crisis by orchestrating a global boycott of Iranian oil. We brought down the Iranian government and installed the Shah.

For two decades, we propped up the Shah against the will of the Iranian people. It was all about controlling Iran. It still is. Today, ABC News is reporting exclusively that this president has authorized a new covert CIA plot to bring down the Iranian government.

I ask unanimous consent to enter into the record the journalism produced by chief investigative reporter Brian Ross and Richard Esposito of ABC News.

This is their lead sentence in the story.

"The CIA has received secret presidential approval to mount a covert 'black' operation to destabilize the Iranian government, current and former officials in the intelligence community tell the Blotter on ABCNews.com."

We’re back in 1953, and that worked out so well.

Of course, the vice president wanted to invade Iran, so we can be sure he will spin new tales of fear in coming days to keep his preferred option, invasion, very much alive.

The president knows only one way -- my way or the highway.

His vice president knows only one way -- invade and seize control of what you want -- and he wants the oil treasure of Iraq and Iran to become wholly owned subsidiaries of the western oil companies he so favors.

With Iraq in civil war, the president has authorized a secret plan to repeat the doomed mistakes of history in Iran.

How many billions of reconstruction money for Iraq will be siphoned off for the deconstruction of Iran?

The American people are virtually shouting at us to pay attention and get our soldiers out of Iraq, now.

Vast sums of U.S. taxpayer money are flowing into Iraq and billions of U.S. dollars are missing.

The special inspector for Iraq reconstruction told a San Antonio newspaper last week that corruption in Iraq is endemic and debilitating.

But, Prime Minister al-Maliki has granted ministers and former ministers immunity from prosecution by Iraq’s Commission on Public Integrity.

And, in turn, the ministers can shield their own employees from prosecution.

And, a government that has been told by this president and vice president to pass an oil law that transfers control -- and profits -- to Western oil companies, just like the good old days in Iran.

Overthrowing Iran in 1953 was all about oil. Invading Iraq was all about oil. And the new secret plot against Iran is all about oil.

Oil is the only benchmark this president and vice president want, and they will keep American soldiers fighting and dying until an oil law is passed in Iraq that gives Western oil companies control of the spigot.

It is time to unmask the latest doomed plot to overthrow Iran and past time to get out soldiers out of Iraq.

Nothing less than protecting our troops is acceptable.

Thank you.
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