History can repeat itself, albeit in a cryptic manner. In November of 2009 investigative reporter Robert Parry recalled
In fall 1980, as President Jimmy Carter struggled to free 52 American hostages in Iran and as American voters focused on a crossroads election, key supporters of Republican candidate Ronald Reagan were confident not only of Reagan’s victory but that the hostages wouldn’t be released until after Reagan was sworn in.
He wrote that CIA operative Miles
Copeland, who had taken part in the CIA’s covert operation to oust Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh and replace him with the Shah back in 1953, told me during an interview in 1990 that he and some of his old CIA colleagues, including Iran hand Archibald Roosevelt, were in touch with Republicans regarding Carter’s Iranian hostage crisis of 1980...
These Republicans, however, didn't believe it necessary to device a plan to set the hostages free because
“That was sort of an open secret among people in the intelligence community, that that would happen. … The intelligence community certainly had some understanding with somebody in Iran in authority, in a way that they would hardly confide in me.”
Copeland said his CIA friends had been told by contacts in Iran that the mullahs would deliver the hostages to Reagan.
“At that time, we had word back, because you always have informed relations with the devil,” Copeland said. “But we had word that, ‘Don’t worry.’ As long as Carter wouldn’t get credit for getting these people out, as soon as Reagan came in, the Iranians would be happy enough to wash their hands of this and move into a new era of Iranian-American relations.”
Moments after Ronald(6) Wilson(6) Reagan(6) was sworn in as the 40th President, the Americans were released by Tehran. Jimmy Carter thus was humiliated and Republicans spun into motion the story that the hostages were released only because the Iranians were terrified of what the big, tough President Reagan would do to them otherwise.
Contrary to myth still spread by Republicans to this day, the mullahs in Iran had maneuvered- by styming all efforts at setting the hostages free- to defeat President Carter and elect a guy who later turned out to be their patsy. Fifty-two Americans had gained their freedom, but too late for Jimmy Carter and just as Reagan's presidency began. Mission accomplished.
Thirty-five years later, something analogous occurred in the GOP presidential race. And so it was that in late March we read
Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz says “there’s no good reason” for rival John Kasich to continue his campaign.
“When you go 1-for-27, that’s a problem,” Cruz said of Kasich during a Friday interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity.
"At this point it is clear the voters have decided it is a two-man race," he added. "It is between me and Donald Trump. We are the only two candidates with any plausible path to win the nomination."
Nevertheless, Kasich continued to run interference for Trump by refusing to leave the field to a two-man race, which would have included a candidate harboring an eclectic batch of political views and history of personal associations including Cosa Nostra figures, the Clintons, and others. Facing him would have been Ted Cruz, a conservative stalwart who has been a Tea Party favorite and has argued before the Supreme Court nine times.
Refusing to drop out, Kasich denied Cruz a very favorable matchup, the contest the Senator longed for with the business mogul and newcomer to the Republican Party.
Following his devastating loss to Trump on Tuesday, Cruz abruptly and surprisingly exited the race. Though it had been clear for at least five weeks that Kasich had virtually no chance at being nominated, he decided only the day after Cruz's announcement to declare that he, too, was dropping out. The governor told reporters "I have always said that the Lord has a purpose for me as he has for everyone. And as I suspend my campaign today, I have renewed faith, deeper faith, that the Lord will show me the way forward and fulfill the purpose of my life."
Mission accomplished. Just as American hostages were released practically to the minute Jimmy Carter left the presidency, so, too, did Kasich leave the field for Donald Trump once he had blocked the way forward for Ted Cruz. Perhaps the Lord did have a purpose for John Kasich. Once it was accomplished, there was no need for him to continue his candidacy.