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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Distrust of Obama on Iran Nuke Deal Justified

Cries of “treason” have greeted the open letter to Iran’s leaders signed by 47 Republican senators.  Secretary of State John Kerry has led the charge against the Republicans who have, by general consensus, committed an unprecedented breach of protocol. But there is a strong case to be made for this “unpatriotic,” “unconstitutional”—possibly treasonous?—action.

The administration claims that the letter threatens to undermine their ability to negotiate a deal with Iran. Clearly, it’s critical to understand what the actual objectives of our negotiations are.
In February, Kerry addressed Congress, stating emphatically that under the deal, Iran will not get a nuclear weapon. "The president has made clear—I can't state this more firmly—the policy is: Iran will not get a nuclear weapon," he told members of a Senate Appropriations subcommittee.

This declaration is key to my analysis, and I’ll return to it shortly.

What, then, was the purpose of the letter? I won’t bother to rebut the ridiculous reasons offered by President Obama (in his interview with VICE News) that the Republicans were in league with the Iranian hardliners...   nor add legitimacy to claims whispered by race-baiting Democrats by responding to them.

No, I think the reason is really just what it seems: the senators simply don’t trust Obama to make a deal with Iran over nuclear weapons. I share this distrust, and I know I’m not alone.

There is plenty of evidence that Obama seeks a rapprochement with Iran, much like his present campaign to normalize relations with Cuba.

The Obama “Iranian connection” is well known. Its focal point is Valerie Jarrett, his Iranian- born senior advisor. Since first occupying the office and going on his “apology” tour of the Middle East, Obama saw himself in a historic role—the man who would pave the way for a new era in US-Islamic relations.

His subtle pivot away from Israel and toward her enemies provides further circumstantial evidence. Ditto his “terrorist summit” that was performed for Islamic leaders and seemed to have as its chief aim the prevention of associating Islam with the pandemic jihadist atrocities presently visited upon “infidels” and apostates around the world.

So what about the nuclear deal?  Any discussion that does not begin by asking the question, “Does Iran seek nuclear weapons?” is to my mind, facially invalid.

We used to hear this question often. It was always posed to any Iranian spokesman or diplomat granting an interview. We just don’t seem to hear it very much now, when you would think it is most critical. Why is that? After all, these negotiations... this deal... is supposed to be about preventing Iran from “going nuclear.” Isn’t it?

Perhaps the reason we don’t hear this question is because the answer is painfully, and laughably, obvious.  Of course Iran seeks nuclear weapons!   Is there anyone outside of Iran who doubts this?

They sit on the fourth largest crude oil reserves in the world. At a time when nations are sensibly dismantling their nuclear industries and moving to healthier and safer renewable energy sources, how can anyone claim with a straight face that Iran’s pursuit of nuclear power is to satisfy its energy needs? Unless, that is, “peaceful purposes” is really just a euphemism for “obtaining nuclear weapons as a deterrent against Israeli or US aggression.”

The lesson to be learned from our handling of North Korea in contrast to Iraq or Libya is not lost on Tehran. If you possess nuclear weapons, and particularly a sophisticated missile delivery system, you do not need to fear military intervention from the U.S. (By the way, Iran has an ICBM program.)

What is also obvious is that should (at this point we might be tempted to say “when”) Iran develop nuclear weapons it will set off a nuclear arms race in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia will be next in line, presumably with our help. Then... Egypt? Turkey?

The thought of any nuclear armed Islamic nations in the Middle East should be cause for maximum alarm to any sane person. It should in fact be the highest priority of the civilized world to prevent this from ever happening. Do I need to say the word: ISIS?

Inferring no judgments on the Israeli Prime Minister and his address to Congress, Netanyahu said, "The greatest danger facing our world is the marriage of militant Islam with nuclear weapons." 

In light of the scale and degree of the Jihadi atrocities we have now witnessed, can this be disputed?

And so we return to our negotiations with Iran over its nuclear “program.” What is the Obama administration really seeking? Is it to ensure that “Iran will not get a nuclear weapon”?

What is missing from Kerry’s statements above?  A time coordinate.

When, Mr. President; Mr. Secretary of State?  Until when?

What I fear, and what I believe is shared by many including the 47 Republican signatories, is that the time parameter is intentionally left off. I think the unstated time is “in the immediate future,” or “for the remainder of my administration,” or perhaps at the extreme terminus of ten years, as that number features into the controversial “sunset clause” of the deal.

Netanyahu again, speaking of the deal, one quote that rings resoundingly true: “It doesn't block Iran's path to the bomb; it paves Iran's path to the bomb.”

I believe that Obama & Co. are reconciled to the inevitability of a nuclear-armed Iran, and that perhaps they envision an alliance with Iran as the first step in a some future grand reconciliation between the three religions spawned by the children of Abraham—after Iran finishes off ISIS, that is.

But most importantly, Obama envisions a nuclear deal with Iran as part of his legacy, and he is willing to do anything to get it.

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