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2008: Did Obama Violate the Logan Act During His Iraq Visit?

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posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 10:58 AM
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Let's take a walk down memory lane...

Did Obama Violate the Logan Act During His Iraq Visit?

According to a NY Post article:


[W]hile in Iraq this summer, Barack Obama privately tried to convince Iraqi leaders to wait until a new administration is in place before beginning a draw-down of American troops.


According to the Accuracy in Media article as referenced above and in the OP title, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari:


Obama made his demand for delay a key theme of his discussions with Iraqi leaders in Baghdad in July. “He asked why we were not prepared to delay an agreement until after the US elections and the formation of a new administration in Washington,” Zebari said in an interview.


According to Obama's national security spokeswoman, Wendy Morigi:


In fact, Obama had told the Iraqis that they should not rush through a “Strategic Framework Agreement” governing the future of US forces until after President George W. Bush leaves office, she said.


So what's the difference? In my opinion:

1. Obama acted secretly; the GOP senators acted very publicly.
2. Obama acted unilaterally and arbitrarily; the GOP senators acted within a consensus of their elected positions.
3. Obama acted for his own purposes and benefits; the GOP senators took action for the good of the country (as they perceive it.)
4. Obama's actions would keep our troops in harm's way for longer; the GOP senators' letter does not affect our troops.

So what say you ATSers? What do you see as the difference -- if any? If you want to see the GOP senators charged and prosecuted for Logan Act violations, do you also think Obama should be charged and prosecuted? Why or why not? If you happen to remember the brouhaha at the time and thought Obama should have been charged and prosecuted, do you also think the GOP Senators should be charged and prosecuted? Why or why not?

In my opinion: The Logan Act is a stupid useless law and should be repealed or rewritten. So no, I don't think any of them should be charged and prosecuted. It's all politics... and, of course, divide-and-conquer.




posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 11:05 AM
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You want Obama held to the same standards as republican senators? You don't ask much, do you? By your sources, it would indeed appear that Obama violated the Logan Act. By the very same standard that others have held to the senators that sent the letter to Iran, Obama is also a traitor!



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 11:08 AM
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originally posted by: EternalSolace
You want Obama held to the same standards as republican senators? You don't ask much, do you? By your sources, it would indeed appear that Obama violated the Logan Act. By the very same standard that others have held to the senators that sent the letter to Iran, Obama is also a traitor!


I guess I'm really expecting that these GOP Senators should be held to the same standard Obama was... or am I just being technical about it?

I really just think it's a non-issue -- except to keep us riled up and fighting amongst ourselves while they bring chaos and destruction to us all.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 11:43 AM
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As I've already said before. Just because the GOP failed to run with pressing charges for Logan Act violations in the past, it doesn't mean that the Democrats can't do so now.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 12:07 PM
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originally posted by: MystikMushroom
As I've already said before. Just because the GOP failed to run with pressing charges for Logan Act violations in the past, it doesn't mean that the Democrats can't do so now.


Fair enough, to a certain extent. But certainly not in the interests of fair play.

Nor under due process of the law. Nor according to common law, which demands the same basic punishment (or lack thereof) as others who have committed the same violation. The precedent has been set. If others -- including Obama -- engaged in the same activity and were neither charged nor punished, then neither can the Republicans, and they lowered the bar.

Further, assuming a 7 year statute of limitations, that would mean that Obama is still vulnerable to the same charge and prosecution until July of this year.

So do you think those same charges should be brought against Obama?



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 12:47 PM
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a reply to: MystikMushroom




As I've already said before. Just because the GOP failed to run with pressing charges for Logan Act violations in the past, it doesn't mean that the Democrats can't do so now.

Or is it because the Democrats are making a bigger fuss over the letter? Or the fact that any action taken against Obama will have his administration and it's supporters come out saying it was because he is black? Or the fact that Iran has never allowed nuclear inspectors to actually do their jobs during any past agreement? This last one is the one people neglect. Prior agreements have not been followed by Iran and the prez acts like he is the special one they will keep up their end! Lots of indignation from Obama and his people but no reassurance that he is actually going to play hardball with Iran.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 12:52 PM
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a reply to: Boadicea

Seriously? Don't you think the GOP would lay this on him if they could? Hell, they'd impeach him for jaywalking if they could. No teeth in this argument.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 12:55 PM
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a reply to: Boadicea

Hummm ...
Is it just me or did anyone alse notice another name left off this list.
I seem to remember a "private citizen" named Ronald Reagan who, along with some future members of his staff, was in contact with the leaders of the Iranian revolution while they held Americans hostage, to hold these hostages until after he became President.
This could only have been done for "his" political gain.
How many think this might be a violation of the here-to-fore mentioned Logan Act?



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 01:31 PM
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originally posted by: intrepid
a reply to: Boadicea

Seriously? Don't you think the GOP would lay this on him if they could? Hell, they'd impeach him for jaywalking if they could. No teeth in this argument.



Haha! Hahaha!!! Oh wait... you're serious?

To think that, I would have to give them some credit for their competence, intelligence, and motivations. And that's not going to happen.

But I'm not asking what the GOP can or will do... I'm asking what you think should be done and why or why not.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 01:35 PM
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originally posted by: MystikMushroom
As I've already said before. Just because the GOP failed to run with pressing charges for Logan Act violations in the past, it doesn't mean that the Democrats can't do so now.


Either the law is the law and should be the same for all, or we should ignore it.

Ignorance is no excuse we are told. Well just because there was no prosecution then doesn't make it right either.

Either it's a violation of law and deserves full prosecution or it's not. You cannot have your cake and eat it too on this. If the Republicans are traitors, so are the Democrats as each have actively worked to undermine the presidencies of the other.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 01:36 PM
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originally posted by: teamcommander
a reply to: Boadicea

Hummm ... I seem to remember a "private citizen" named Ronald Reagan who, along with some future members of his staff, was in contact with the leaders of the Iranian revolution while they held Americans hostage, to hold these hostages until after he became President.


I actually remember those accusations as well. If I remember correctly, it was then-VP Bush Sr that was supposed to have done the dirty deed, and I thought there were Congressional hearings, but when I tried to look earlier, all I found were the Iran-Contra hearings. I'll look again this evening; but if you can find some links and want to post them, I'd appreciate it.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 01:36 PM
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originally posted by: intrepid
a reply to: Boadicea

Seriously? Don't you think the GOP would lay this on him if they could? Hell, they'd impeach him for jaywalking if they could. No teeth in this argument.



There are so many things that they could have and should have impeached Obama for by now. But thanks to Obama's ethnicity and the media, any attempt to impeach him would be painted as racism just like Clinton's impeachment was all about sex and not at all about lying under oath.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 01:42 PM
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originally posted by: ketsuko

Either the law is the law and should be the same for all, or we should ignore it.


Seems pretty simple and fair to me.


Either it's a violation of law and deserves full prosecution or it's not.... If the Republicans are traitors, so are the Democrats as each have actively worked to undermine the presidencies of the other.


I haven't been able to pin down a statute of limitations, but assuming it's the common 7-year period (as opposed to no statute of limitations under the War Powers Act I believe it is), then charges can still be pressed against Obama until July...

Which also brings up the possibility of impeachment charges; but I'm not sure if impeachment is limited to acts committed while in office and I wasn't able to find anything about it.

I'm thinking no one can win this fight, so it will either be dropped completely... or it's going to get real ugly.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 01:47 PM
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NY Post is a Rupert Murdoch scandal rag that has been used in the past to start rumors that his other news holdings can then reference back to, without disclosing the source of the rumor mongering.

Here is an article dating back to 2008:

Obama Meets Iraqi Prime Minister in Baghdad

The Iraqi visit was brought on by criticism from McCain and other Republicans that Obama had yet to visit the region before entering the presidential race. In fact many Senators take such visits (McCain himself made extensive visits to a host of Arab countries).

However no one at the time leveled any criticism that Obama was there in violation of the Logan Act nor was any "communique" alleging such a breach claimed.

Not, that is, until the NY Post chose to reframe the visit along such lines after the controversy surrounding Rep. Tom Cotton came out, and it seems very much designed to take the heat off of Cotton and the other 47 Senators who signed that controversial letter to Iran's leaders.

Keep in mind too, that Iraq at that time was under US occupation and the major issue was timetables for troop withdrawal, not the discussion of US foreign policy between a hostile adversary nation (like Iran) and it's nuclear program.

This thread (and contention by the NY Post article) appear to be trying to compare apples and oranges.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 01:49 PM
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a reply to: hangedman13


Or is it because the Democrats are making a bigger fuss over the letter?


Just Democrats? Might want to look at that claim again, as it seems to have riled up a number of Republicans too.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 02:03 PM
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Edit:

My bad. I feel like he's been president forever now so I thought the trip was after his election. Mea culpa mea culpa
edit on 12-3-2015 by Shamrock6 because: Time warp threw me off



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 02:14 PM
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originally posted by: Blackmarketeer
NY Post is a Rupert Murdoch scandal rag that has been used in the past to start rumors that his other news holdings can then reference back to, without disclosing the source of the rumor mongering.

Here is an article dating back to 2008:

Obama Meets Iraqi Prime Minister in Baghdad


Like the NY Times is any better than the NY Post? That's funny.

Here's another article from 2008, also quoted, cited and linked to in the OP:

Did Obama Violate the Logan Act During His Iraq Visit?


The Iraqi visit was brought on by criticism from McCain and other Republicans that Obama had yet to visit the region before entering the presidential race. In fact many Senators take such visits (McCain himself made extensive visits to a host of Arab countries).


So? Visiting a nation and trying to influence the public policy of a sitting president are two very different things.


However no one at the time leveled any criticism that Obama was there in violation of the Logan Act nor was any "communique" alleging such a breach claimed.


Visiting is not the problem; influencing a foreign leader in an ongoing negotiation is... and Yes, there was allegations made at the time, as the above referenced article from Accuracy in Media in 2008 attests. Perhaps you should wonder why there was little or no coverage of this by the MSM.


Keep in mind too, that Iraq at that time was under US occupation and the major issue was timetables for troop withdrawal, not the discussion of US foreign policy between a hostile adversary nation (like Iran) and it's nuclear program.


So? Ongoing foreign negotiations are ongoing foreign negotiations. Oh! Since you pointed out the "occupation," you might also want to consider that since we were "at war" at the time, Obama's actions would seem to fall under the War Powers Act, and there may not be any statute of limitations on his "crime." But even if it falls under the common 7-year statute of limitations, Obama is still subject to charges and prosecution.


This thread (and contention by the NY Post article) appear to be trying to compare apples and oranges.


Please explain how the Logan Act differentiates between ongoing foreign policy negotiations.

And may I clarify your position? Am I right to assume that you are giving Obama a free pass for his foreign policy interference as a Senator, but you want to see the GOP Senators prosecuted for their interference?



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 02:18 PM
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originally posted by: Shamrock6
Doesn't the Logan Act apply to people who aren't authorized to negotiate treaties and agreements? Isn't the president authorized to do both of those things?


The incident in question occurred in July of 2008, during Obama's trip to Iraq. So at that time, it was then Senator Obama trying to influence a foreign leader regarding Prez Bush's negotiations with Iraq regarding troop withdrawal timetables.



posted on Mar, 12 2015 @ 02:18 PM
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a reply to: Boadicea

well of course your right....everything Obama does is wrong, anything that republicans do wrong, is Obama's fault....makes perfect looney toon sense to me......




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