“Are you so blind that you cannot see? Are you so deaf that you cannot hear?” “Nelson Mandela,” by The Special A.K.A.
According to a recent report by Reuters, President Obama claimed “he was [sic] yet to hear a strong factual argument against a nuclear deal with Iran…” How about Iran’s promise to destroy us?
What about the argument that there would be no better way for Iran to achieve this victory over America than for the United States to sign off on an agreement that gives Iran: the ability to produce nuclear weapons in ten years or less (almost certainly less, as they will undoubtedly violate the conditions of the agreement); no anytime and anywhere inspections; $100 to $150 billion, some of which will be used to fund international terrorism (much of which will be aimed at the United States and Israel, our chief ally and only democracy in the Middle East); access to ballistic missiles and state-of-the-art, Russian-made surface-to-air missiles cable of shooting down U.S. aircraft in the strategically important Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf; and who knows what else contained in the (at least) two secret side agreements.
And the United States gets what? A couple of Nobel peace prizes for President Obama and Secretary Kerry? All approved by the American- and Israel-friendly United Nations.
How about the argument that it is incomprehensible that the president of the United States would jeopardize America’s national security and that of the entire Middle East simply to accomplish his signature “legacy.” Especially when it would be amazing if this agreement doesn’t end disastrously for America and, therefore, his “legacy.”
The Wolves Guard the Hen House
Of course, the president argues that if the Iranians violate the agreement we can initiate inspections and “snap back” the sanctions it lifts—assuming, however, that the Russians and Chinese agree. (Note to readers unfamiliar with the Russians and Chinese: they won’t agree to any “snap back” sanctions.)
What about the argument that the deal should be defeated because the Iranians get to sit on the committee that decides what constitutes a violation, and if inspections are agreed to, Iran gets 24 days to erase all evidence of any violations.
As to Khamenei’s comments, the president will undoubtedly claim this is simply political posturing meant to appease local political constituencies. Surely this must be the case, right? After all, what’s the likelihood that Iran, Hizbollah, or Hamas will strike American targets?
It’s not as if they were behind the Iranian hostage crisis, the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, the attack on the American Marine barracks in Beirut, or, more recently, responsible for the deaths of more than 1,000 Americans in Iraq. And if Iran targets Israel? Well, they’re no better than apartheid South Africa or the Nazis, right?
Finally, the deal’s proponents claim that Iran would never be so rash as to use a first-strike nuclear weapon. To oversimplify, game theory teaches us that two rational parties will act in a manner mutually beneficial to both parties. Iran’s use of a nuclear weapon would certainly result in a nuclear response against Iran, so such an attack would be completely irrational.
But when is the last time you applied the term “rational” to Islamic terrorists who are willing to blow themselves up just to kill a few infidels? Not only does this deal lack two rational actors, it may lack any.
If one needs any further evidence that this is a historically bad deal, consider this: many experts believe it may lead to a strategic partnership between Saudi Arabia and Israel. Ponder that for a moment.
The president claims the only alternative to this deal is war, and that no one has proposed any alternative. Well, for what it’s worth, here’s one alternative: How about maintaining the current sanctions that are crushing Iran’s economy, causing internal strife, and limiting its ability to sponsor terrorism and dominate the region’s powers?
According to the center-left Brookings Institution, “Since 2010, the sanctions’ impact on Iran has been severe: its oil exports and revenues plummeted; the value of its currency eroded; trade disruptions shuttered businesses and exacerbated inflation. Quietly, a backlash emerged among Iran’s political elites against the country’s creeping isolation…”
Why not simply propose to the Iranians that if they desire relief from these regime-threatening sanctions, they should completely abandon their efforts to develop nuclear weapons? If not, prepare to suffer the same fate as the Soviet Union.
Of course, the president doesn’t actually want an alternative, he wants a “legacy.” So instead we agree to lift the sanctions while allowing Iran to actively pursue its nuclear weapons program. To paraphrase, Obama has promised the Iranians that “if you like your nuclear weapons program, you can keep it.” Unfortunately, this time I think he actually means it, and that’s argument enough against this awful agreement.