No, not with His domestic enemies in the next Congress. He desperately wants a deal, any deal, with Iran.
Obama intends to grant Royal amnesty for millions of illegals currently present in our nation, regardless of the adverse economic and social impacts and Republican warnings. I opined here on what He will likely do and on the unfortunately poor prospects for any Republican efforts to thwart it.
Remember “Leg Tingles?” The tingle has gone, at least temporarily
So much for deal making with the opposition.
However, Obama is anxious to have a deal — any deal — with Iran very soon.
Although He will not make a deal with His domestic enemies whose voters rejected Him and His policies on November 4th, Obama is apparently so infatuated with His need for a legacy that He continues to push for a nuke deal with Iran. Any deal will do, no matter how disastrous it will be. Obama’s protestations to the contrary are consistent with “if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor,” “if you like your medical insurance policy you can keep it,” “My administration will be the most transparent in history” and a multitude of others.
A deal with Iran needs to be signed, sealed and delivered well before the next Congress convenes in January. Hence the importance of meeting the November 24th deadline or extending it for the minimum time needed for Iran to demand, and for Him to make, more concessions.
Iran continues to hang tough and Obama continues to seek accommodation from Iran so that He can have a legacy. Obama dispatched a letter to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei last month.
The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that, according to people briefed on the letter, Obama wrote to Khamenei in the middle of last month and stressed that any cooperation on dealing with the Islamic State, or ISIS, was tied to Iran striking a deal over its nuclear program. The U.S., Iran and other negotiators are facing a Nov. 24 deadline for such a deal. [Emphasis added.]
. . . .
Asked about the reported letter, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest would not confirm the report.
“I’m not in a position to discuss private correspondence between the president and any world leader,” he said.
However, he said the U.S. policy toward Iran “remains unchanged.”
In an article at Commentary Magazine titled White House Ignores Khamenei Response to Letters, Michael Rubin wrote that contrary to reports that Khamenei did not respond,
Actually, Khamenei did respond. On the 30th anniversary of the seizure of the U.S. Embassy, he said this, in a mocking tone which is even more apparent in the Persian version of this speech:
The new US President made some beautiful comments. He also repeatedly asked us in writing and orally to turn a new page and help him change the present situation. He asked us to cooperate with him to solve global issues. He went as far as that.
Now, Khamenei continued to say he gave Obama a chance, but Obama didn’t come around. Khamenei then gloated about the strength of the Islamic Republic, a perception which Obama’s groveling tone has bolstered:
I wonder why they do not learn a lesson from what has happened. I do not understand why they are not prepared to get to know our nation. Do they not know that this nation is the one that resisted and brought the two superpowers – that is, the Soviet Union and America – to their knees? When there were two superpowers in the world, they were opposed to one another in almost all areas except in their enmity towards the Islamic Republic. This enmity was the only thing these two superpowers had in common. Why do you not learn your lesson? Today you are not even as powerful as you used to be. The Islamic Republic is several times more powerful today than those days, and yet you are speaking with the same tone? That is arrogance – talking to a nation arrogantly and using threats to get what they want. They threaten us. And our nation says it will resist.
Khamenei then warned the United States not to put its hope in reformers, as Obama seems keen to do:
Just because a handful of naïve or malevolent individuals have confronted the Islamic Republic does not mean that they can roll out the red carpet for Americans in our country. These individuals either had ulterior motives or had naively misunderstood the events without having very bad intentions – I do not want to be judgmental about their malevolence. Americans should know that the nation is resisting firmly.
Despite the very substantial concessions which Obama has already granted, Khamenei’s remarks seem to amount to this: give me whatever else I demand or shove your legacy up your scrawny apostate ass.
It was reported on November 8th that
Ali Akbar Velayati, longtime foreign policy adviser to Khamenei and a former Iranian foreign minister, may join the talks between US Secretary of State John Kerry, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and European Union negotiator Catherine Ashton, in a signal that the Supreme Leader may be preparing to sign off on a deal, sources told Al-Monitor on condition of anonymity. [Emphasis added.]
. . . .
The meeting between Kerry, Zarif and Ashton is due to get underway Nov. 9 in Muscat, Oman, which hosted secret US-Iran talks that helped lead to reaching the interim Iran nuclear deal last year. Following the two-day US/Iran/EU trilateral meeting Nov. 9-10, negotiators from the rest of the P5+1 — the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany — are supposed to join the talks in Oman for a Nov. 11 meeting. Another, possibly final, round of P5+1 Iran talks is due to be held in Vienna from Nov. 18 to 24.
US, Iranian and Russian negotiators say there is still more work to be done, but are expressing increasing, albeit cautious, optimism that a deal is within reach.
The November 24, 2013 P5+1 Interim deal was and remains a scam
In January of this year, I wrote about Obama’s Iran Scam, structured from the beginning in Iran’s favor by legitimizing Iran’s Uranium enrichment and effectively eliminating consideration by the P5+1 negotiators of Iran’s past and continuing efforts to militarize nuclear weapons. The January 16, 2014 White House Summary of the arrangement states,
Iran committed in the Joint Plan of Action to provide increased and unprecedented transparency into its nuclear program, including through more frequent and intrusive inspections as well as expanded provision of information to the IAEA. [Emphasis added.]
Will Iran’s “unprecedented transparency” be similar to that which Obama claimed for His administration? Or the versions of transparency He delivered?
Continuing with the White House Summary,
The Iranian enrichment facilities at Natanz and Fordow will now be subject to daily IAEA inspector access as set out in the Joint Plan of Action (as opposed to every few weeks). The IAEA and Iran are working to update procedures, which will permit IAEA inspectors to review surveillance information on a daily basis to shorten detection time for any Iranian non-compliance. In addition, these facilities will continue to be subjected to a variety of other physical inspections, including scheduled and unannounced inspections.
The Arak reactor and associated facilities will be subject to at least monthly IAEA inspections – an increase from the current inspection schedule permitting IAEA access approximately once every three months or longer.
Iran has also agreed to provide for the first time:
- Long-sought design information on the Arak reactor;
- Figures to verify that centrifuge production will be dedicated to the replacement of damaged machines; and
- Information to enable managed access at centrifuge assembly workshops, centrifuge rotor production workshops and storage facilities, and uranium mines and mills.
These enhanced monitoring measures will enable the IAEA to provide monthly updates to the Joint Commission on the status of Iran’s implementation of its commitments and enable the international community to more quickly detect breakout or the diversion of materials to a secret program.
With respect to centrifuges, the U.S. has caved several times on the numbers and types that Iran can have and use and will very likely continue to do so. As of late September, The U.S.
is considering softening present demands that Iran gut its uranium enrichment program in favor of a new proposal that would allow Tehran to keep nearly half of the project intact while placing other constraints on its possible use as a path to nuclear weapons, diplomats told The Associated Press.
The U.S., which fears Tehran may enrich to weapons-grade level used to arm nuclear warheads, ideally wants no more than 1,500 centrifuges left operating. Iran insists it wants to use the technology only to make reactor fuel and for other peaceful purposes and insists it be allowed to run at least the present 9,400 machines.
The tentative new U.S. offer attempts to meet the Iranians close to half way on numbers, said two diplomats who demanded anonymity because their information is confidential. They said it envisages letting Iran keep up to 4,500 centrifuges but would reduce the stock of uranium gas fed into the machines to the point where it would take more than a year of enrichment to create enough material for a nuclear warhead. [Emphasis added.]
Now, it appears that Iran has sped up Uranium enrichment and may also have violated the interim agreement.
Iran has stepped up efforts to develop a process that could enrich uranium at a much quicker pace, thereby violating the interim nuclear agreement reached with world powers last year, according to the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security, or ISIS.
“Iran may have violated [the interim deal] by starting to feed [natural uranium gas] into one of its advanced centrifuges, namely the IR-5 centrifuge,” ISIS wrote in an analysis of the confidential IAEA report issued Friday to member states, according to Reuters. “Under the interim deal, this centrifuge should not have been fed with [gas] as reported in this safeguards report.”
. . . .
Iran has also reportedly sped up its low-grade uranium enrichment over the past two months, growing its stockpile by 8% to 8.4 tons.
The issue of advanced enrichment is sensitive because Iran could potentially produce a nuclear weapon if it processes the material further, a main concern for the West.
Perhaps Obama’s willingness to cave is why, as noted above, “the Supreme Leader may be preparing to sign off on a deal.”
Moreover, as I noted here, here and here, the interim agreement and the White House Summary omit any mention of Iran’s military-nuclear sites, such as Parchin, where the IAEA had reason to think that there had been implosion testing in 2011 but was refused access to inspect. They also fail to mention
Development and construction of rocketry capable of delivering nuclear warheads; and
Development and testing of nuclear warheads.
If Iran’s continuing development of militarized nukes is of no consequence, what (besides a legacy for Obama) is the purpose of a deal? Might this happy language in the White House Summary be meaningless?
The Joint Plan of Action marks the first time in nearly a decade that the Islamic Republic of Iran has agreed to specific actions that stop the advance of its nuclear program, roll back key aspects of the program, and include unprecedented access for international inspectors. [Emphasis added.]
The farce continues apace. As the Daily Beast pointed out on November 7th,
Iran continues to refuse to disclose its nuclear activity, and experts do not anticipate the country will become more transparent in the future. That’s the assessment released Friday from the International Atomic Energy Agency. “The agency is not in a position to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran, and therefore to conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities,” said the report, which was also pessimistic about the chance that Iran will be forthright with its nuclear activities in the future. [Emphasis added.]
Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article on November 7th titled How to understand Obama’s Iran diplomacy. It’s a very good article, so please read the whole thing. He wrote, in the lead paragraph,
I think the easiest way to understand Obama’s diplomacy is this. Assume that Obama believes Iran should have nuclear weapons and would like to facilitate the mullahs’ nuclear weapons program. This assumption is the Occam’s Razor that clarifies what might otherwise be obscure. The assumption may not be correct, but it should prove a handy guide to coming attractions. [Emphasis added.]
Mr. Johnson may well be correct. Or perhaps Obama cares less about whether Iran gets (or keeps) nukes than He cares about securing a legacy. Either way, it’s bad for much of the Middle East and also for the United States.
Iran’s human rights record and support for terrorism
Nor was there any mention in the P5+1 interim deal, or the White House Summary, of Iran’s horrendous and worsening human rights record. According to an article titled Iran Amputating Limbs, Burning Political Opponents,
Iran executed a record-shattering 411 citizens in the first half of 2014 and a total of 852 people in the last 15 months, including at least eight juveniles, according to a new United Nations report that will be introduced to the organization’s General Assembly Tuesday.
In addition to a surge in state-sanctioned killings that a U.N. official referred to as “shocking,” Iran continues to torture imprisoned individuals using techniques such as amputation, electroshock, flogging, and burnings, according to the report, which details human rights in the Islamic Republic.
As noted at the Daily Beast.
While Secretary of State Kerry has referred on occasion to Iran’s human rights record as “abysmal,” the Obama administration has done precious little to pressure Iran on this front. In fact, the rare tough talk of American diplomats has become outpaced by growing references to their blossoming friendship with Iranian regime officials. “It’s reached a level of we know each other well enough to make jokes,” a senior U.S. official recently gushed to reporters. [Emphasis added.]
What do they joke about? Obama? Human rights? Terror? Nukes? Israel?
What does our desperation to get a nuclear deal at all costs say to the modern-day Iranian Solzhenitsyns rotting in Evin prison? Or to the young social-media savvy generation who took to the streets in 2009 after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s fraudulent reelection? [Emphasis added.]
The interim deal as well as the White House Summary also suggest that P5+1 discussions will take no account of Iran’s already massive support for terrorism, for which it will have even more funds as sanctions continue to disappear.
For a major supporter of international terrorism, with a worsening human rights record that makes even that of North Korea seem relatively tame, to have and to be in a position to use nukes will be worse than merely shameful.
What will be Iran’s first nuclear target? Over the weekend the Supreme Leader repeated, for the nth time, his views on Israel:
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called for the destruction of Israel over the weekend, stating that the “barbaric” Jewish state “has no cure but to be annihilated.
Will this, transformed from a simulation into reality, be part of Obama’s legacy?
Who will be next? The Great Satan, perhaps?
A good deal for Iran is also bad for the decreasingly free “free world” for a different reason: since the Obama Nation won’t stand up, effectively, for democracy with freedom — including even the most basic of human rights — who will? Formerly Great Britain?
Continuing and largely successful efforts to sanitize Islam through multicultural political correctness and its necessary ally, repression of what was once free speech, may well mean that no nation will do more than make bland and ineffective shows of standing for even the most basic of human rights.
UPDATE, November 11, 2014
Please see also End the Bush-Obama Fecklessness: Destroy Iran’s Nuclear Facilities Now by Andrew G. Bostom at PJ Media. Following a lengthy analysis of Iran’s Islamist ideology and why it matters, Mr. Bostom concludes,
Till now, those are your Iran policy options from the ones who control such discourse—and current or planned actions—across the political and ideological spectrum. As a potential alternative to this dangerously misguided policy morass, I queried Professor Kroenig about the possibility of urgent Israeli airstrikes. Kroenig’s A Time to Attack argues persuasively about the limitations of such an Israeli campaign, Israel lacking any known capability, for example, to penetrate the deeply embedded fortifications of Iran’s Qom/Fordow uranium enrichment facility. However, given what is truly needed two-years from now, hope against hope—a complete U.S. political and policymaking class “regime change”—I offer Professor Kroenig’s temporizing solution until the U.S. regains its geostrategic and moral bearings:
As a last resort, an Israeli strike, and the year or two of breathing space, at minimum, it would buy, would be preferable to acquiescing to a nuclear Iran. [Emphasis in original]