A Brief, Depressing Follow-Up On The Iran Deal

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I have been reading a lot about the Iran deal, hoping against hope that I just don’t understand it, and that it might be more responsible than it seems, because it seems to be astoundingly irresponsible.

Comes the Washington Post editorial board, reliably supportive of the President—any Democratic President, really–and a good bet to find the silver lining in any cloud. Surely, if this agreement isn’t the crowning, most dangerous incompetence on the mountain of incompetence that is the Obama Presidency, the Washington Post will move that mountain aside to show why.

Here are some direct quotes from this pro Obama, pro-Iran deal editorial by a liberal media standard bearer:

If the transformation of Iranian behavior the president hopes for does not occur, the deal on its nuclear program may ultimately prove to be a poor one — a temporary curb that, when it lapses, will enable a dangerous threshold nuclear state that poses a major threat to the United States and its allies.

In other words, the deal does not ensure this “transformation” will occur, the U.S. has no control overwhwether the “transformation” does occur, and the treaty doesn’t have anything in it that will compel such a transformation. Keep your fingers crossed.

 Its most immediate effect will be to provide Tehran with up to $150 billion in fresh assets from sanctions relief over the next year, funds that its leaders will probably use to revive the domestic economy but also to finance wars and terrorist groups in Iraq, Syria, the Gaza Strip, Yemen and elsewhere.

Gee, what a great deal.

Though Mr. Obama has promised to mitigate that outcome with new support for Israel and U.S. Arab allies, one effect of the deal may be an increase in the sectarian bloodshed wracking the region, as well as the conventional threat to Israel. When embargoes on arms and missile sales to Iran expire in five and eight years, that threat could further escalate, and Tehran could seek missiles capable of striking U.S. warships in the Persian Gulf or reaching the U.S. homeland.

That’s what the treaty allows, mind you.

These strictures, according to the administration’s experts, will keep Iran a year away from producing a weapon during that time — provided that it does not cheat by secretly conducting nuclear work elsewhere.Because Iran twice has been caught in such clandestine work, that is a critical concern — and the provisions for deterring and detecting violations are the areas in which Tehran fought for, and won, some troubling compromises. International inspectors seeking access to a suspected Iranian site could be delayed by a 24-day, multi-step process ultimately requiring five votes on an eight-member committee; at a minimum, the United States and four European representatives would have to concur. While a U.S. president could, in theory, unilaterally determine that Iran was cheating and force the reimposition of U.N. sanctions, it could take 65 days and might prove politically unworkable.

Wow! I see another Peace Prize!

 Mr. Obama settled for terms far short of those he originally aimed for.

This is what happens when you want a deal of any kind, and don’t have the guts to walk away.

Whether he is right in claiming that his successor in 10 or 15 years “will be in a far stronger position” with Iran will depend on whether his hopeful theory about its political future proves correct.

No, we can only judge the competence and reasonableness of an agreement at the time it is made. “We might get lucky” is no defense.

I’m convinced, and by The Washington Post: this was a craven, inept, dangerous agreement made by a foolish, desperate, deluded man and an tragically incompetent leader. The American people have an obligation to the entire world, and their children and grandchildren, to insist that Democrats join Republicans in killing it.

Later they can explain why they would again hand the nation over to a party that placed the fate of civilization in the unqualified hands of a President like this.

84 thoughts on “A Brief, Depressing Follow-Up On The Iran Deal

    • If this goes through, we may have no future. (though, looking on the bright side, we would have no Dr. Phil either)

        • Do you mean selling weapons to Iran? Do you mean selling weapons to fight Iran? Are you being facetious? Do you believe the military LIKES sending young men to die over stupid foreign policy positions???

          You have made quite a vague and potentially disgusting statement…

          • I meant simply that the so-called deal with Iran is a promise of future war (and more of it), while it is being touted as the only alternative to war.

            The Pentagon is in business to fight and win wars. The military-industrial planners – in the Pentagon, in U.S. industries, and in industries across the globe – cannot be blamed for at least a slight increase in excitement at the prospect of increased demand for arming whomever happens to feel (and whomever has a will to respond rationally to that feeling) threatened by a non-sanctioned, openly trading, ruled-by-duplicitous-and-irrational-tyrants, blatantly-concealing-its nuke-programs, sworn-to-the-annihilation-of-Israel Iran. Nor can those who seek to satisfy Iran’s inevitable increase in demand for arms be blamed, for their excitement at the nuke non-deal.

            You’re disgusted by the realities of how modern nations’ military strength is planned? It has nothing to do with liking the sending of troops into harm’s way. It’s just business. Even if a country or its so-called leadership doesn’t have the will or good sense to fight, that still won’t stop the arms merchants from trying to sell and profit off of providing more (and more lethal) stuff for fewer fighters (or non-fighters) to use (or not use).

  1. So the plan is to give more weapons and taxpayer money to Mid-East allies so that they can match the increase in Iran’s military strength which the administration acknowledges is the inevitable result of lifting sanctions. In other words, “lets you and him fight with state-of-the-art weapons.”

    Even putting nuclear concerns aside, this is sadistic and reckless. Where is the anti-war crowd?

    • BECAUSE THE ANTI-WAR crowd IS EXACTLY who Obama is catering to on this.

      They are so stupid (the President included) that they think everyone on this planet (except Republicans) are good at heart and wouldn’t ever hurt a fly….that Iran is just rhetoric and will live up to their “peaceful goals”.

      Obama and his ilk are REALLY that colossally stupid.

      They really are.

  2. As a result of an earlier bill, as long as 34 Senators support the President, and there are 11 more Democrats than that, this is a done deal.

    • Which is ridiculous. Who would have ever dreamed of the legislature passing laws giving up it’s constitutional powers.

      The Senate pre-surrendering its Treaty powers…

      Ridiculous.

      This is what we get with decades of anti-constitutional education.

  3. The Economist has a slightly different view:

    http://www.economist.com/news/middle-east-and-africa/21657654-nuclear-deal-marks-milestone-irans-relations-world-details-matter-wary-hope

    In part:
    “The concern of critics of Barack Obama, both in Washington and beyond, was that the president’s perceived desperation to burnish his legacy with an historic deal would result in dangerous compromises surrendered at the last minute to the wily Iranians. However, that was never likely (Iran’s need for a deal has always been much greater than America’s) and it is not borne out by the details of what has appears to have been agreed. Some, such as Israel’s prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, and the jockeying Republican presidential candidates, regard any deal with Iran that does not fully dismantle its nuclear infrastructure—an unattainable goal, as they know perfectly well—as not worth having. For Mr Netanyahu, the deal was “a bad mistake of historic proportions.”

    “But judged by more pragmatic standards, the deal, while not perfect, appears much better than any of the plausible alternatives. Republicans in Congress and their hardline counterparts in Tehran will still try to prevent the deal’s implementation. But they are unlikely to succeed. Mr Obama told opponents its opponents in Washington that it fully met the national security interests of America and its allies. He warned: “So I will veto any legislation that prevents the successful implementation of this deal. We do not have to accept an inevitable spiral into conflict. And we certainly shouldn’t seek it. And precisely because the stakes are so high this is not the time for politics or posturing. Tough talk from Washington does not solve problems.”

    “Mr Obama looks to have enough Democratic senators on his side to sustain his veto. As for Iran, it is almost inconceivable that its supreme leader, despite his ambivalence about many aspects of the deal, will now allow the work of his negotiators to unravel.

    • “Iran’s need for a deal has always been much greater than America’s”

      Exactly. So why didn’t the US get everything it wanted, including a cessation to support for terrorism, including thorough inspections, including automatic sanctions when Iran cheats, including a release of all US prisoners? Because Obama negotiated from imagined weakness, using a dolt—Kerry—to do the negotiating.

  4. The agreement has made for strange bedfellows.

    Those in favor of the agreement include Obama, the UN Permanent Security Council, Germany – and Putin. How often does that combination line up together?

    On the other side, those lined up AGAINST the agreement include the following:
    -Israel
    -ISIS
    -Al Qaeda
    -Saudi Arabia
    -Venezuela (depressed oil prices)
    -Gulf States
    -Sunnis
    -All Arabs
    -Turks and Pakistanis(Pakistanis want to sell nukes to Arab States) (Turkey wants to shut down rival Shia power.)
    -Republicans
    -Tea Party
    -Fracking oil companies

    Interesting lineups.

    • Not really.

      It would be odd indeed if all these various actors suddenly lined up on all manner of policy points because of this and line up side by side in coordinated response to Iran. They don’t and they won’t.

      Since this comment is relatively irrelevant, I almost feel like there’s a strange and hidden rationalization in here somewhere.

    • “Those in favor of the agreement include Obama, the UN Permanent Security Council, Germany – and Putin. How often does that combination line up together?”

      Wait, wait, wait, you think in the end that’s an odd line up?

      The UN – a corrupt umbrella that enables petty dictators
      Putin – a corrupt dictator
      Obama – a wannabe dictator, whose ineptitude on all fronts makes him corrupt.
      and Germany… who, when push comes to shove, tends to lean slightly East in its international line-ups….?

      Come now, nothing odd about that.

    • Russia is a trading partner of Iran and will be getting a lot of those billions of dollars in arms sales. The agreement makes the US weaker and makes it appear weaker still…Russia loves both. The UN is an anti-American, corrupt cabal that hates Israel. Iran loves the deal. Bad guys like the deal, because it’s bad….for peace, for freedom, for Israel, for security.

      • Most presidents up to now, with the possible exception of Jimmy Carter, see or saw the US and US power as a force for good in the world. There is certainly a record to support that even though we have not always been perfect in our handling of everything.

        I believe Obama is the first president who does not see it that way. Instead he sees Europe as the model to emulate, where military power is largely a thing of the past and moral suasion is the order of the day.

        History doesn’t bear any of that out, I would point to the 1920s and 30s Kellogg-Briand pact and Washington Naval Treaty that supposedly were going to outlaw war and prevent a costly arms race…the first of which became a joke and the second of which was cheerfully violated right under the Western powers’ nose, with them taking no action to prevent it. Not to worry, the League of Nations would handle it…while the USSR was thrown back by Poland but crushed the Finns and Baltics, Italy crushed Ethiopia, and the Nazis and Fascists turned Spain into a dress rehearsal for Blitzkrieg.

        But hey, who reads history now? It’s just the story of a racist, sexist, anti-gay, superstitious human race who only started to get close to enlightenment in 2008. It has no lessons to teach us and we’re busy knocking it down, tearing it up, and destroying it. Some we’ll put in a museum so maybe you god-and-gun knuckle-draggers can go visit it one weekend a year if you’re good boys, while we enlightened folks sip Starbucks and talk gender politics.

        • Deep down inside people know history but they suffer from one of the following (which isn’t an exhaustive list by any means):

          1) they stupidly believe that people are constantly “getting better” in that the belligerency of the past has been “grown out of” and that peacefulness is just a matter of cultural “maturing”. These people are stupid.

          2) they stick their heads in the sand because deep down they know people are still fallen, broken, corrupt, given up to their lusts and covetousness and violent tendencies, but they have hair heads in the sand because the don’t want to put the effort into cleaning things up. These people are lazy.

          • Well, there is the European joke about what’s the difference between America and yogurt? Leave yogurt alone for centuries and it develops a culture!

            To that I respond did ya hear the one about the new European tank? Five gears that move backwards and one that moves forward in case they get attacked from behind!

            Weenie-dom is not something to aspire to, but I think Obama and his supporters do.

            • Yeah, Europeans make those kinds of jokes to salvage their pride considering that America and EVERYTHING it stood for in stark contrast to their Old World Left wing style racism, hatred, centralism bailed them out of the self-destruction their system ultimately leads to.

              Here’s an excerpt from one of my favorite historian’s books:

              From “In the Time of the Americans” by David Fromkin:

              MAGNIFICENCE SUGGESTS a polished style and culture, but these were not the traits that Europeans discerned in their liberators. The GIs were friendly, open, generous, and decent; but the peoples they freed, and who by and large had cut a poor figure in the war, salvaged some of their pride by looking down on the Americans for lack of manners, learning, and breeding.
              This European sense of superiority was not easily supportable—even though it continued to be maintained—once the troops had seen the death camps. True, the immensity of the horror made it not at first comprehensible—not, at least, as a whole; that took time. And it was only over time, too, that the true story came out, that the Germans were not alone in the genocide; that French, Polish, and other enthusiastic assistants joined in consigning millions to flames.
              But to see the ovens into which humans were fed was enough to implicate the high culture of Europe; its value was drawn into question once it was suspected that such a culture had culminated in Dachau and Auschwitz. And by way of contrast, how could one look down on the typical GI who showered gifts on little children—without regard to whose little children they were?*
              Observing the works of Nazi Germany and her willing aiders and abettors in German-occupied Europe had the effect of reminding the United States of what it stood for. Americans told themselves, and others, that theirs was a country in which every person was as good as everybody else—a land tolerant of differences but conscious that beneath surface differences all were children of one God.
              Those who lived through the 1940s will remember the motion picture films then and afterward about the war and the names of the men in a typical army platoon—as the movies had it: Smith, O’Brien, Campbell, Kozlowski, Jones, Giannini, Suarez, Cohen. That was the way the country wanted to be seen: as a spacious, liberal-spirited New World that had risen above the hatreds that had destroyed the Old.

              *Yet a generation of postwar European intellectuals grew up in the cafés of Saint-Germain-des-Prés and elsewhere defining their literary and artistic superiority by a deliberate anti-Americanism.

            • If “culture” is what they aspire to, that’s kind of sad. How about aspiring to better things….

              What they are trying to say is after Nietsche took control of their world-view they stopped producing culture and are saddened by that and are simply pissy.

              America, just like EVERYWHERE, has culture. They just don’t like what our culture says about Mankind and what it can be.

              • I agree it’s pathetic. The Europeans know that we bailed them out of self-destruction and saved them from collapse, but they simply aren’t interested in that, much less in projecting power or fighting tyranny. They are interested in cheap or free medical care, not working too hard, and early, fully-funded retirement.
                The thought is that the UK did their time keeping the sea lanes open, Germany did their time keeping Russia out of Europe, Austria did its time policing the Balkans, and everyone else did their time in WWII and NATO. Now it’s time for them to concentrate on making sure everyone lives a life free of want and conflict. If the US wants to break its head fighting the mullahs or Putin, it’s welcome to.
                Obama has I think latched onto that mentality, this generation and this country have done their time fighting the uncivilized world, and now we’re going to concentrate on making sure everyone has a good life, whether they work for it or not. Sounds good, if it is workable. By Pearl Harbor, everyone had forgotten the Roaring 20s and, to some degree, the breadlines, and no one now looks back to ask what the leaders of that time could have done differently. Obama is banking that, 10 years down the road, when this all goes bad, no one will ask that tthen, and he’ll only be remembered for his color and as some great civil rights icon, forever insulated from criticism by “It was Bush’s fault, and you’re a racist.”

  5. Thank you! You’ve certainly set off my personal ethics alarm, but not as you might have intended.

    On such a vital matter those claiming this deal is “astoundingly irresponsible” have in my view an obligation to point out options which are at least ‘less irresponsible”, and obviously so.

    Would using US military power to ‘bring Iran to heel” be obviously less irresponsible?

    Do the views of others in the P5+1 group matter? Would it be practical to run unilateral US sanctions on Iran if the P5+1 group fell apart?

    In my view unless there are very clear indications of corruption or incompetence there is some obligation to at least respect the views of the President and his officials. If you are truly “convinced” that this is a ‘craven, inept, dangerous agreement made by a desperate, deluded man and tragically incompetent leader’ then please consider whether your emotions could be overriding your analytical grip. This is surely far too difficult and complex a subject for anyone at any distance from the facts and realistic options to hold such a strong view, particularly so soon after the details have become available?

    Considering ethical issues directly, surely it is unethical to maintain that allowing Iran access to its own money is some sort of generosity? In any event, what sort of ethics justifies one party confiscating the assets of another, or blocking access, or making access conditional on some course of action? If ethics matter this is surely all quite murky?

    • Is “Anything has to be better than Nothing!” covered on the list yet? I feel it’s related to #40, The Desperation Dodge. I’ve been seeing a lot of it in regards to this issue. “Do you have any better ideas?” pops up quite a bit, too.

      I’ve got spiders in my basement. Setting the house on fire would fix the problem. Unless I hear any better ideas, I don’t want to hear any complaints when I go ahead with my plan.

      • I understand that ‘do nothing’ from the US would most likely have broken the international sanctions and left the US isolated. Only those close to the negotiations could judge the likelihood of this happening. The power of the US to punish adversaries through unilateral sanctions is inevitably fading. If Russia, China, France, Germany and the UK have agreed to remove sanctions, then what would the US achieve by maintaing sanctions, other than to disadvantage US businesses? Holding the P5+1 together has been a great achievement but the clock has been ticking.

          • When was it discredited? Seriously, they were receiving a ton of money from other foreign sources despite sanctions, such that sanctions from us didn’t alter much, but may have made things a bit harder on Iraqis who weren’t part of the regime.

            • Discredited in the sense that they only hurt the Iraqis, who were not able to mount regime change because Saddam would kill them. The sanctions are a lazy and cruel tool in such a case: Iraqis were starving, and Saddam was getting rich by under the table dealing with Russia, France, and the UN. Nice. Sanctions against countries without a true democratic process punishes the powerless populace for the conduct of its leaders: unethical.

              • Umm… That’s pretty much the opposite of what Dan was saying. He sad that the argument that sanctions weren’t working was discredited. In other words, he thinks they were working…

                I agree with you. They weren’t working, and as Rumsfeld pointed out they basically couldn’t work because Iraq was sitting on a sea of oil (which got dishonestly twisted into “we went in FOR the oil” by some idiots on the left).

                • Hussien’s regime would have no doubt been stronger without sanctions. Part of the “weapons of mass destruction” fear was that the sanctions were so ineffectual that Hussien was stockpiling these weapons. The point is not that sanctions “work” or are good policy, but that whatever the problems with the sanctions, they were not a justification for the war.

              • Jack: Sometimes economic sanctions can be the best bad idea there is. With Iran, the status quo of semi-effectual sanctions and international illegitimacy is preferable to freeing up $150 Billion for them. You are opposed to this deal but the most significant gain for Iran is the lifting of sanctions. If sanctions are so bad why don’t you rejoice?

                • Sanctions are bad for the people; giving all that money to leaders who will use it to kill other people is worse. The point is that sanctions are a lazy, popular way to put off armed intervention when that is really what is needed. So people starve, bad treaties are made, and eventually a nation acts, whereupon the world condemns it because—sanctions. Israel get to play the US in the Iraq sequel. I think Obama is counting on it.

      • Would using US military power to ‘bring Iran to heel” be obviously less irresponsible?

        If there is only one alternative that works, the others won’t, and the consequences of allowing things to go where they are going will be catastrophic, what’s your problem? You do what you have to do. You don’t do what you know can’t work just to put off the inevitable.

        Yes, if the spiders are going to eat you and or everyone else in the neighborhood, you burn the house down.

        That was pretty much the plot of “Aarchnophobia.”

        • Unconstrained US military force applied on a semi continuous basis might well be more than sufficient to ‘bring Iran to heel’ but it isn’t currently a practical option. A key lesson of Vietnam was that the use of US military power may be limited far more by US public opinion than direct enemy capabilities. Unless or until Iran can be persuaded to directly attack the US in ‘Pearl Harbour’ fashion there won’t be a realistic option to conquer Iran. (Hopefully they won’t be so stupid.) And attacking Iran with any lesser objective than conquest looks highly dangerous and almost inevitably counter productive.

  6. Well this is what we get when the slack jawed % of American voters re-elect an unqualified leader who is much more interested in preserving his legacy than protecting our country and Western civilization. Thank you mainstream media, the Democratic Party, and all the Obama cronies who have stood by and protected “your man”.

  7. “”And so really the only argument you can make against the verification and inspection mechanism that we’ve put forward is that Iran is so intent on obtaining a nuclear weapon that no inspection regime and no verification mechanism would be sufficient because they’d find some way to get around it because they’re untrustworthy. And if that’s your view, then we go back to the choice that you have to make earlier. That means, presumably, that you can’t negotiate. And what you’re really saying is, is that you’ve got to apply military force to guarantee that they don’t have a nuclear program. And if somebody wants to make that debate — whether it’s the Republican leadership, or Prime Minister Netanyahu, or the Israeli Ambassador or others, they’re free to make it. But it’s not persuasive.”

    The President’s press conference yesterday.

    Posted by Ann Althouse on her blog. Ann has impressive comments (she is a really strict moderator) and the comments on this flat out fauous, magical thinking statement by the President—signature significance, by trhe way—are varied and devastating, especially in response to the rare zombie acolyte who defends such “logic.” What isn’t persuasive to Obama is that real leaders and competent nations have to face conditions as they are and deal with them, no matter how scary and unpleasant the solutions are. In this quote, he is really arguing that pretending the conditions are better, dealing with them as is they are, and hoping against hope that the real, scary circumstances change, is a responsible course. This is, you will note, also his approach to illegal immigration, health care, the debt, ISIS, and other issues.

    • “the rare zombie acolyte who defends such “logic.” What isn’t persuasive to Obama is that real leaders and competent nations have to face conditions as they are and deal with them, no matter how scary and unpleasant the solutions are.”

      Rare zombie accolyte? I think you are the outlier here, not Obama. The real nations who “have to face conditions as they are” include China, France, Russia, the UK, and Germany – all of whom signed the agreement. They agree with Obama.

      Rare zombie acolytes? Dial back the hyperbole.

      • Rare, if you will observe the context, directly refers to the commenters on Althouse’s post.

        Meanwhile, if there is a worse version of “everybody does it” than “China, France, Russia, the UK, and Germany do it,” I’d like to see it, even at the risk of projectile vomiting. Let’s see, which of those nations give a damn about Israel? Which ones are actively involved in fighting terrorism abroad? Which ones are regularly called “the great Satan” in Iran? Which are dedicated to making the world better, freer and safer, rather than to play Real Politick regardless of the harm to others? Let’s see, two international villains and three declining world powers desperately trying to avoid offending their future Islamic overlords.

        I’ll delete your comment for you if you ask, CG. If I were you, I’d be embarrassed by it.

        • Thanks for the offer of withdrawal, but i’ll stand with it, thanks. Along with The Economist, the UN Security Council, and the NYTImes Editorial Board. I know you like to deride each one of those entities, but the UN for example represents the major powers in the world today.

          I’ll go with them; against Netanyahu, Saudi Arabia and ISIS, none of whom have done much for the cause of peace or of disarmament that I can see.

          • Uh…the UN Security council, The Economist, and the NYT Editorial Board haven’t done anything in the cause of peace or disarmament either…so if that is your standard, you may need to reconsider your conclusions…

            Dost thou think ere thou postulate?

    • I’m going to pre-apologize to you Jack, but to anyone who may receive my ire. But I will probably be very rude and very discourteous to anyone who defends this idiotic course we are taking.

      I have 2 babies and a pre-teen. I don’t see any future, down the road this president and the Left in general is taking us, that doesn’t involve those 3 kids having to spend their young adult years fighting and possibly dying in a fetid mess that we inherit from the Left.

      Sorry, but those Supreme Jerks have earned my hate.

    • I dispute that it’s the only argument one can make against the agreement. Beyond that, does he truly believe that Iran is not dead set on getting a nuke, and that it is trustworthy? What would it take to convince him?

      To be fair to Iran, in their shoes, I wouldn’t trust the USA either. Look at what happened to Libya. It’s clear that the only way to protect yourself from the US if we don’t like your form of government is to actually have a nuclear deterrent. Regardless of the benefits of taking out another corrupt dictator, it established a negative precedent when it comes to nuclear disarmament. On net, I think it was a mistake, which further hampered our negotiations after the “red line” nonsense.

      • “Peace in our time”. Obama and Kerry must have been boning
        up on how Neville Chamberlain got his deal with Hitler over the Sudetenland. “Hope and Change” will hardly do as the basis for an effective policy with Iran’s nuclear development program.

  8. Sucked into the Black Hole of the ME. Great. I can imagine suitcase nukes available on EBay. Just send a money order to Hamid in Tehran.

  9. Describing the deal as incompetent is missing the larger point. The deal is extremely savvy in regards to US domestic politics. It is good for the President and his “legacy”, as well as the prospects of his party.

    Facing down Iran over its nuclear program, would force the President to make some very uncomfortable admissions about American power. The US simply doesn’t have the power to stop Iran’s program. On paper it “might” have the power, but it doesn’t have the will, the backing of its allies or the support of the average American.

    On the other hand coming to an agreement with Iran, no matter how bad, gives the President a chance to save face. He can claim that, in the interests of peace, he made the best deal possible. Because if you can’t stop Iran’s program the next best thing is to claim that you are giving Iran permission for its program. Even if this fails utterly, he will be praised in the West as a peacemaker.

    Domestically this is also a low risk proposition. Iran is unlikely to seriously misbehave before Obama is out of office. This means that the next administrations will have to deal with consequences. In fact, the best outcome for Obama might be a Republican administration undoing his deal. Republicans won’t be able to stop Iran’s program without a serious and sustained military effort. This is guaranteed to be unpopular domestically and it would allow Obama to claim that his basically unworkable deal was sabotaged by Republicans. Keep in mind Obama came to office primarily as a result of American war weariness. Democrats know how to win elections in opposition to American wars.

    • Don’t interpret my comment to disagree with your analysis. You are accurate of course that the primary motive in this is domestic power maintenance combined with narcissistic legacy, damn the consequences for our children.

    • War weariness was a minor factor in Obama’s election, and as a governing factor, it is one that a competent leader is obligated to ignore. That was the excuse for bringing home the Iraq troops prematurely—an utter catastrophe. War weariness is what allowed Hitler to gain a near decisive foothold in Europe.

      Obama won because 1) the economy had collapsed 2) he was black, young, and nicely employed the “Man on a horse” strategy, 3) Republicans ran an old, inept candidate who was as awkward on TV as Obama was skilled, and 4) The news media shamelessly campaigned for him.

      The American public may be as dumb as you think, but I doubt it. I think that the public is very likely to turn on the agreement and any Democrat so craven and foolish as to endorse it.

    • Really? I think it reveals a weak president who knows he is a little man and is afraid of the dictators of countries like Syria and Iran. To think that the President of the United States has to beg Iran to come to a deal is ridiculous. To think that the leader of this rich and powerful nation is afraid of a little country whose people make a few $100 a year points to outrageous cowardice. To think we have alienated our traditional allies in the middle east so we can try to replace them with Iran seems incomprehensibly stupid. Even Obamas supporters acknowledge that we will be giving hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to terrorists with this deal.

      Why not go in with the treaty we want and say “You have 1 minute to agree to these terms. After 1 minute, I am going to call Mr. Netanyahu and ask him to send me a list of what he wants…up to and including intermediate rage single warhead nuclear missiles. You have 30 seconds remaining”. If they don’t agree, you give the Israelis what they want and wash your hands of it. Why did we even treat this as a negotiation?

  10. “Keep in mind Obama came to office primarily as a result of American war weariness”

    Which always baffles me.

    ‘war weariness’? From what?

    Taxes were not raised significantly.
    Resources were not rationed AT ALL.
    Casualties impacted about .5% of the population directly (and I can be persuaded that the other 90% of the population really didn’t care about them anyway past trendy lip-service and manufactured grievance).

    No, we weren’t war weary…we were propaganda weary, we finally got sick of being told by the media and education elites that America is a force of evil and only does harm in the world…we started believing it.

    Same thing defeated us in Vietnam…

  11. I don’t buy into the legacy issue – at least long term. If this agreement – like everything else in the ME – blows up (pun intended) down the road that will be some legacy.

    • You underestimate the power of the left wing spin machine.

      A decade from now when Israel is compelled to strike Iran or Iran strikes Israel, we will have been informed during the lead up to that that there was 10,000 other reasons for this mess (mostly caused by republicans and conservatism) none of which involve Obama’s left wing world view that actually directly contributed to the problem.

      Nope he’ll still be lauded as one who tried to stave off disaster despite other “nefarious” causes.

      • I think you are underestimating the role war weariness played. The invasion of Iraq was followed by years of nonstop bashing of the war effort. One of the underlying themes of the Obama campaign was ” time for nation building at home”. This is one of the reasons why they had to lie about the cost of Obamacare, to make it less expensive than the Iraq.

        Also most people who follow foreign policy have considered a nuclear Iran a given since the National Intelligence Estimate was changed during the Bush administration. The estimate of Iran’s capabilities was mysteriously pushed back several years when W started talking about confronting Iran over its program. That was probably the last serious chance to stop them.

        Iran has been expertly playing the West for years and the West has been more than happy ignore Iran’s obvious attempts to get a bomb.Obama is just taking things one step further and pretending it is all part of his plan.

        • Obviously Bush could not start or even threaten to start a third war except under truly catastrophic, existential circumstances. That does not mean that the last chance to stop Iran passed.

          • If it didn’t pass then, it’s probably passed now. That said, I think Obama sees the question of Iran getting the bomb as being something that was going to happen sooner or later, it was just going to happen with or without him getting to score diplomatic points and make the GOP look like dunces for getting in the way of a potential peace. With the media trumpeting his success in the SCOTUS (not actually his, any more than the shooting of bin Laden was his, but in all these cases he successfully swooped in like a boss taking the credit for the success of his underlings), he may have figured he was on a roll, and this would seal his legacy AND give him enough positive points to campaign for Hillary next year.

            Ultimately I don’t think Iran is all that interested in actually fighting with either the US or Europe, though they are happy to finance terroristic gadflies like ISIS. They are VERY interested in becoming the hegemon in the region, possibly dominating Saudi Arabia aside or at least cowing them (they can’t totally displace them since Saudi Arabia has the birthplace and tomb of Mohammed and there’s no way around that). Having the bomb will make that hegemony possible, since at that point they will not only be safe from any other regional power, but also safe from the West, which won’t dare challenge a nuclear power, and from Israel, which they are counting the West to hold in check lest the entire region become endangered. The real danger is the possibility that they might “inadverdently” allow such a weapon to fall into the hands of ISIS, who are crazy enough to use it on Israel or the West.

        • Too bad we’ve essentially abandoned HUMINT, and simply killing their scientists and various other forms of sabotage are no longer practical.

  12. It looks like President Obama has defended this as our best chance of peace in our lifetimes. Why couldn’t he just come out and say “peace for our time”? I also don’t understand why he thinks he has to have a deal or war. This seems to be a dichotomy that HE has created. We have been dealing with a hostile Iran for 35 years without needed a war. I don’t see why we suddenly have to either have a war or capitulate to the Iranians now. They have seized our citizens, and Obama didn’t even try to get them back. They seized our embassy staff in Carter’s administration and THAT is an act of war, and we still didn’t have a war.

    • What then would be your best alternative suggestion?
      War? I agree with you, there’s got to be better alternatives.
      Continued sanctions? Our allies are paying the price for it, and will opt out at some point.
      Restrictions on weapons development seems reasonable to me, but if you’ve got a better idea–what is it?

        • I’ve heard of a bad deal is better than no deal, although I disagree. This wasn’t even a bad deal, this was no deal. It wasn’t a matter of one side not getting all it wanted and the other getting more than it deserved. This was the one side getting everything in exchange for nothing. I’m not sure it’s even a Munich situation where Chamberlain and Daladier told the Czechs to cave because they honestly thought this was not where they wanted to fight and that Hitler might stop there. To their (lesser) credit, once the bad guys went for Poland, they DID say that was it, and went to war. I have a hard time envisioning Obama coming to the aid even of Israel if it were threatened, leave alone any of the other Middle East states. Do we really want to watch the Middle East become the Eastern Europe of the 1930s, where dictators gobbled up land a piece at a time and the free nations just shrugged?

  13. I applaud the visionary leadership of Iran for its steadfast commitment to world peace. The Middle East is now infinitely more secure and poised for prosperity of all peaceful peoples. (I might have forgotten some of the dreams of my father before I wrote the foregoing, but I have my own.)

    Oh Chaaarrrles…[I am whispering]…genocide. It’s coming. Maybe not exactly the genocide *I* prefer or predict. But even so, I actually relish being dead as my reward and validation, as the confirmation and celebration of the advent of what I have been advocating roar on.

  14. Barack Obama is starting to sound like Ferris Bueller, arguing with his buddy Cameron about having no choice but to drive Cameron’s dad’s fancy car while out on the town during a day of school-ditching. “I’m sorry…there’s just nothing else we can do…” (Apologies, if I don’t recall the line perfectly.)

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