Senator McCain is On the Foreign Relations Committee, Right?
It is true that as far as flippant jackassery goes, Sen. McCain’s Tweet implying that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a simian astronaut probably isn’t as purely awful as his improvised song parody, “Bomb, Bomb Iran”, but it is up there, even drawing criticism from fellow Republican, MI Rep. Justin Amash, who Tweeted in return: “Maybe you should wisen up & not make racist jokes.”
It would be a point well taken—not that McCain is liable to. This is, after all, the cranky hothead who engaged in a “Twitter beef” with Vladimir Putin not that long ago:
Prompting Putin to reply:
On Thursday, in his nationally televised and wide-ranging “phone in,” Putin was asked about McCain’s pugnacious tweet, and the suggestion that the kind of uprisings that have unfurled across the Middle East could be replicated in Russia.
According to reports from Moscow, Putin turned stone-faced.
“Mr. McCain was captured, and they kept him — not just in prison, but in a pit — for several years,” he said, referring to McCain’s years in captivity during the Vietnam War. “Anyone would go nuts.”
Putin also invoked the NATO mission in Libya, saying McCain has “the blood of peaceful civilians on his hands, and he can’t live without the kind of disgusting, repulsive scenes like the killing of Gaddafi.”
There is perhaps no love lost between McCain and Putin. On Thursday, McCain shot back on Twitter: “Dear Vlad, is it something I said?”
That would be the same Gaddafi of whom McCain once Tweeted:
Now, I don’t have a whole lot of use for Putin (whose personal cut about McCain’s sanity was vicious) or Ahmadinejad (who is already a cosmically terrible primate), much less sympathy for Gaddafi,but it still strikes me as weird that this guy, as recently seen trying to grandstand on Benghazi with former Sec. of State Clinton and elicit a “yes” or “no” from former Sen Hagel regarding the success of the surge strategy in Iraq (a war we have ended about a hundred years sooner than McCain might have liked), has never quite understood that if there is a standard of seriousness with which foreign policy matters should be approached—that standard would also apply to him, and that appending “JK” to a mean-spirited public comment might not actually count that much when it reveals something puerile about a person who would have been a policy maker, and who wields significant influence even now.
All snide humor about the folly of choosing Sarah Palin for running mate aside, there is an unbearable lightness to McCain’s approach regarding sensitive and weighty matters. I’m pretty sure, however, a Sunday chat show slot where he can talk all this recent Twitter debacle out awaits him. And all will be forgiven.