Misleading attack ads aimed at Warner


    While watching the PGA golf tourney today, I was treated to an attention-grabbing ad that urged me to contact Senator Warner and tell him to vote against the Iran nuclear agreement.

    The ad was slick and very well-done.  It featured an Army sergeant who had been horribly wounded in IRAQ.  He went on to blame Iran for his wounds.  He described how “terrorists” in Iraq had murdered little children — all the while the screen was showing Iranian mullahs.  

    Obviously, the ad is an attempt to subvert the nuclear agreement with Iran by blaming Iran for killing and wounding soldiers in Irag.

    I didn’t catch the name of the organization responsible for the ad — something like “American Security Initiative.”

    I immediately fired off messages to Warner and Kaine urging them to support the nuclear agreement.

    • worth of ads. For more about these fine folks, see here.

      The American Security Initiative (ASI) was launched in early 2015 by former Sens. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Evan Bayh (D-IN), and Norm Coleman (R-MN). According to Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin, a bombastic right-wing pundit, the aim of the organization is to promote the controversial Corker-Menendez bill, officially known as the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act.[1] Critics have argued the bill is meant to derail on-going nuclear negotiations by preventing President Obama from fulfilling U.S. commitments under any would-be deal with Iran.[2] Obama has declared he would veto the bill if Congress passes it.[3]

      In March 2015, ASI began its efforts by sponsoring an ad that took a stringently alarmist tone with respect to Iran’s nuclear program, showing a truck driver in an American city listening to speeches by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu just before he detonates an apparent nuclear bomb.[4] The ad ends saying: “Tell Washington. No Iran nuclear deal without Congressional approval.”[5] The $500,000 ad spurred intense criticism and all the major networks-with the exception of Fox-refused to air it during their Sunday morning shows.[6]

      “So unless we get about the most despised and incompetent institution in American politics to sign off, then we’re all going to be vaporized? Best kiss your children goodbye,” opined one commentator of the ad.[7] “It is almost as if anti-Iran hawks do not actually believe their own rhetoric, and are seeking to scuttle a deal for a host of reasons-politics, knee-jerk opposition to President Obama, an allergy to diplomacy, desire for a free military hand in the Middle East-that have nothing to do with nuclear weapons.”[8]

      In 2014, one of the founders of ASI, former Sen. Norm Coleman, became a registered lobbyist for Saudi Arabia through the Hogan Lovells law firm. According to Hogan Lovells, his work involves “providing legal services to the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia” on issues including “policy developments involving Iran.”[9]