Good going to Secretary of State Pompeo for calling out a group of Democrats — including, apparently, Secretary of State Kerry — for reportedly meeting with the Iranians on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, and in secret. Mr. Pompeo was responding to a report of the parley in the Federalist. “If they met,” the secretary said, “I don’t know what they said. I hope they were reinforcing America's foreign policy, not their own.”
Fat chance. The notion that they might be reinforcing America’s foreign policy was mocked by Senator Christopher Murphy, the Connecticut Democrat who led the delegation. He had been stonewalling reports of the meeting for days. Then Mr. Murphy posted a confession to meeting the Iranian, though he did, according to the Times, acknowledge that he lacks standing to “conduct diplomacy on behalf of the whole of the U.S. government.”
Mr. Murphy’s view is that “if [President] Trump isn’t going to talk to Iran, then someone should.” In other words, he’s going to defy the decision of the elected government of America to refrain from rushing into talks with the Iranian camarilla. He’s going to instead take it upon his own unauthorized self. Mr. Murphy says he has “no delusions” about Iran, but his actions belie that boast.
Particularly because Secretary of State Kerry was there. He has honed a modus operandi of freelancing foreign policy, against the wishes of the White House or Congress. That goes all the way back to Vietnam, when Mr. Kerry, after a few months with the Swift Boats, quit the Navy and went to Paris to treat with the enemy. Then he came back to America and parlayed the enemy’s key points to Congress.
It’s worth remembering what the key point was, too, though we’ve already reprised it in these columns. Mr. Kerry’s key point was that if we were to abandon Free Vietnam, the enemy would let us go in peace. This led to one of the most ghastly moments ever to take place in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. That’s when Mr. Kerry, wearing a rumpled uniform, was questioned by the anti-war Senator, George Aiken of Vermont.
“Do you believe the North Vietnamese would seriously undertake to impede our complete withdrawal?” Aiken asked.
“No, I do not believe that the North Vietnamese would, and it has been clearly indicated at the Paris peace talks they would not,” Mr. Kerry warbled.
Then Aiken thought of something that was, to him, funny.
“Do you think they might help carry the bags for us?” the senator asked. Laughter erupted.
“I would say they would be more prone to do that than the army of the South Vietnamese,” Mr. Kerry responded.
What a thigh-slapper. That was met with not only laughter but applause. At what were they laughing and applauding? Why, at the predicament of the hundreds of thousands of Free Vietnamese soldiers, who had fought for years for freedom and were going to get rounded up for communist reeducation, and the millions of Vietnamese civilians, who’d bet on America and faced a similar fate. It may have been a horrifying moment, but it did set Mr. Kerry on the road to high office.
Where Mr. Kerry has pursued the same m.o. When he became Secretary of State, he used his power to pursue normal relations with Communist Cuba. He did that even though the Congress had made clear it was not ready to abandon the preconditions set by the law known as Helms Burton. In Havana, Mr. Kerry mocked Americans who’d stood with the Free Cuba movement as “prisoners of history.”
Then he tried a similar stunt with Iran, in what is known as the Iran deal. Remember, Mr. Kerry knew the Iran deal was opposed by both houses of Congress. He still took it to the United Nations, where the Obama administration voted against America’s own Congress. They started flying planeloads of cash to Iran for use, it turns out, in attacks against, among others, our own GIs.
Upon which Americans gave the presidency to the one candidate who, in Donald Trump, vowed to exit the Iran deal. So Mr. Pompeo is the one without delusions. He reminded the international press that Mr. Zarif is “foreign minister for a country that shot down an airliner and has yet to turn over the black boxes ... that killed an American on December 27 ... that is the world’s largest state sponsor of terror and the world’s largest sponsor of anti-Semitism.”