Resistance Rabble-Rouser Rohrabacher Refused Entry to Afghanistan

Rohrabacher playing dress-up in Afghanistan. (Rohrabacher photo via Mother Jones)

Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) tried to pull a fast one over the weekend and sneak in as a “last minute replacement” on a Congressional delegation to Afghanistan. The problem was that, as BBC reported, the rest of the delegation had visas for entry but Rohrabacher did not. Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai learned that Rohrabacher had joined the group prior to it leaving Dubai for Kabul, and he instructed US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to ground the flight until Rohrabacher was removed.

I find it really hard to believe that Rohrabacher did not plan to be a part of the trip from the start, but wanted to avoid advance publication of his plans. Back in January, Rohrabacher, along with his usual co-conspirators Louie Gohmert (R-TX) and Steve King (R-IA), somehow managed to get Representative Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) to lend a patina of “bipartisanship” to a meeting held in Berlin that many viewed as a call to partition Afghanistan and to arm opposition groups such as the Northern Alliance. This meeting made Karzai “incredibly angry”, giving Rohrabacher good reason to try to stay below Karzai’s radar. Further, Rohrabacher also held a Congressional hearing on establishing an independent Balochistan, which, if drawn according to cultural lines, would take territory from Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan.

The full list of Congressmembers on the weekend trip to Afghanistan has not been disclosed, but the fact Politico reports that it was headed by Gohmert supports my suspicion that Rohrabacher planned to attend all along. The timing for additional meddling in US-Afghanistan relations could not have been worse, because Sunday was when it was announced that the US and Afghanistan had finally reached agreement on the outlines of a long term agreement for US support after the withdrawal of fighting forces. Rohrabacher seems to be quite entertained by Karzai’s response. Returning to the Politico article:

“Apparently, [Afghanistan President Hamid] Karzai just goes bananas every time he hears that I might be, in some way, coming into his country,” Rohrabacher said in a phone interview with POLITICO on Monday while he waited in Qatar for a flight back to the U.S.

That bragging pretty much confirms that Rohrabacher knew he couldn’t give Karzai advance warning that he was coming. In their article on Rohrabacher being turned back, the Los Angeles Times appears to have been coached by Rohrabacher’s team, as they tried to soften issue of not having a visa:

Afghan officials say Rohrabacher lacked a visa. But State Department officials said no other members of Congress have been barred from Afghanistan, and members usually aren’t required to get visas because they fly into military bases.

The Washington Post reports that Gohmert led the remaining members of the delegation on to more talks with the Northern Alliance, further suggesting to me that Rohrabacher had planned all along to join the trip.

In addition to his current meddling that has called for two different routes to carving up Afghanistan, the BBC article reminds us that, as seen in a photo Rohrabacher provided to Mother Jones a couple of years ago and reproduced above, he actually took up arms in Afghanistan in the 1980′s to fight alongside the mujahideen:

The US embassy in Kabul has been quick to distance the US government from Mr Rohrabacher, whose involvement in Afghanistan goes back to the 1980s during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, our correspondent reports.

At the time he often accompanied mujahideen forces fighting the Russians.

Rohrabacher’s freedom-fighting then gave us a wonderful “hero” by the name of Osama bin Laden. Who will his latest adventures bring us?

Tweet about this on Twitter0Share on Reddit0Share on Facebook0Google+0Email to someone

7 Responses to Resistance Rabble-Rouser Rohrabacher Refused Entry to Afghanistan

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
Emptywheel Twitterverse
JimWhiteGNV Today would be a very good day to leak the entire Senate Torture Report. Not just the summary, the whole damn thing...
1mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @benjaminwittes @csoghoian @lawfareblog Hey, if Emptywheel can do it, you can too.
11mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @emptywheel: Having failed in its effort to defect to Ireland, Chiquita is now trying again with Brazil. http://t.co/B1fsgDJjdp
12mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @kdrum Been hoping for the best. Good weekend of football for you to lay around and watch.
17mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @benjaminwittes @csoghoian Gotta say, @emptywheel is not a whiskey girl, she is really a beer lady. I am the whiskey/bourbon one.
20mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @steve_vladeck @emptywheel By the way, I don't like Brehm. But it strikes both it+Ali presenter abetter cases than Hamidullan appears to.
22mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel I think the Lions just saved $5,000 in airfare to London. Maybe they can put that to paying off people's H2O bills? https://t.co/Jq6aG7yZ47
24mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @steve_vladeck @emptywheel Like I said, I used (perhaps too loosely) that as shorthand for the entire process.
24mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @steve_vladeck @emptywheel Should US soldiers have the same exposure in all foreign jurisdictions, or are we just exceptional that way?
27mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @benjaminwittes Except I don't drink whiskey. I wonder if @ageis drinks whiskey? @csoghoian
27mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @steve_vladeck @emptywheel Doesn't it trouble you that the US criminal code+procedure is going to cover the stated "battlefield" acts?
27mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @steve_vladeck @emptywheel I used the term generically. What is the "criminal act" that occurred on a battlefield? Is war just a crime now?
30mreplyretweetfavorite
April 2012
S M T W T F S
« Mar   May »
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930