Activities today, before Shabbat, leave me with precious little time. And yet, once again, I feel I must write, this time to provide clarifications and follow-up on yesterday’s story…
After posting yesterday, I received an email from an astute reader who shared with me an article about the secret agreement between the AIEA and Iran, which will permit Iran to use its own investigators to provide information on the Parchin military site. This article – written by Max Fisher on Vox – “explained” that it was not really as big a deal as was being claimed. It involved only some past information, etc. etc.
“It’s hard to know what to believe,” wrote my reader. She subsequently figured out for herself what to believe, but I realize that others may have seen the same article she saw, or a similar one, and that it is important to revisit the importance of the issue. The Obama administration is out there big time, trying to debunk the AP story.
What I want to provide here is clarification on the issue, which truly has huge significance. This is from Commentary Magazine editor Jonathan Tobin, a reliable journalist of integrity, in his article “Congress Cannot Accept Vague Promises About Nuclear Inspections” (emphasis added):
“But though the reports have provoked outrage from critics of the deal, the news didn’t seem to rattle the administration or shake up those who had already announced their support for the pact. To bolster their position, they now point to a statement issued by the IAEA that attempts to debunk the AP report about the details of the secret side deal it had signed with Iran. Like the State Department, the IAEA is claiming the AP article is ‘misleading.’ Though it doesn’t say what exactly is misleading about it, it also asserts that the agreement with Iran satisfied its needs as well as those of the Iranians. Citing secrecy requirements, the agency’s head, Yukio Amano, didn’t directly contradict the article about a draft of the document given Iran the responsibility to inspect the Parchin site and to then merely give its findings to the IAEA. But with the AP standing by its reporting, Amano’s word isn’t good enough. The stakes here are sufficiently high that Congress has a right to demand to know more about the bargain with Iran.
Without that knowledge, any vote for the nuclear deal is an act of faith rather than a reasoned decision about what is good for the security of the U.S. and the world.
“The discussion about the IAEA’s side deal with Iran about inspection of its military sites must be put in the context of Iran’s threats against inspectors as well as its consistent refusal to allow them into Parchin and other places that were used for research into possible military dimensions of the nuclear program (PMDs). It was only on Tuesday that reports were circulating that Iran had directly threatened Amano and warned of severe consequences if he were to reveal the contents of the agreements about nuclear inspections.
“Unlike some of his predecessor[s], Amano has a good record on Iran and has consistently pushed for complete access to Iranian facilities for inspections. But he is in an impossible position. The U.S. and the other P5+1 powers that negotiated the nuclear pact abandoned the positions they had previously staked out on uranium enrichment that Amano was bound to try to enforce. With President Obama making concession after concession in an attempt to get a deal with Iran at virtually any price. He cannot be expected to be tougher than the Americans. The message from Washington in recent months has been crystal clear. The U.S. believed that nothing, no matter how important it might be, should be allowed to interfere with its effort to craft a new détente with Iran…
“The inspections controversy can’t be dismissed with personal assurances or blithe assertions that the IAEA knows what it is doing. In this case, the UN body is merely acting as an agent of [an] administration that seems willing to do or saying anything to get a deal and to have it squeak through Congress via a back door approval process. Despite the president’s appeals to partisanship to force Democrats to fall in lockstep with his appeasement policy, this is a moment where they must stand up to him. Insisting on a free and transparent verification process isn’t an appeal to war, as the White House seems to keep arguing. Rather, it is an appeal to common sense, a quality that America’s negotiators seem to have lacked.
“A copy of the draft agreement between the IAEA and Iran has now surfaced. It completely vindicates the original reporting of the AP about Iran being allowed to inspect its own facilities and debunks the spin from the administration and its supporters that sought to minimize the impact of this revelation.”
The draft agreement can be found here:
My friends, this is a matter of utmost importance. If there was ever a time to stand up for what is right, it is now. Do not be fooled by the lies of the Obama administration. The man in the White House is dangerous.
Obama is not, shall we say, a “good loser.” He will fight like crazy to win this battle for approval of the Iran deal. But while he plays dirty, he also tries to provide a picture of himself as a “good guy,” who is doing everything right.
In a letter to Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), two days ago, he offered assurances that,
“Should Iran seek to dash toward a nuclear weapon, all of the options available to the United States — including the military option — will remain available through the life of the deal and beyond.”
Anyone who believes that Obama would utilize a military option against Iran needs serious help: This is blatant falsehood. Whatever the president thinks might resonate with those in Congress are who undecided, he will say.
Obama also said that Israel’s security is “sacrosanct” (sacrosanct?!?) and that if the deal is passed he will increase defense assistance to Israel.
US Ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, has been singing the same song. It’s time for Israel to accept the reality of the Iran deal, he said. and start working with the US for enhanced security.
What an insult to all Israelis, to imagine we are so foolish, so naïve so eager for American support, that we could believe at one and the same time that Obama is empowering Iran to increase terrorism against Israel and is yet deeply concerned with the security of Israel. Please be assured, this is not the case.
Shapiro is eager to start talks with Israel on security arrangements for the next 10 years, and is expressing frustration that Israel is not on board for this.
In fact, it has been a point of pride for me, to see how Netanyahu has rebuffed all American outreach on such security deals – including when the Secretary of Defense was here not long ago. There are two factors of concern. One is that such assistance would be a sort of bribe, so that if we accepted it, it would be harder for us to then criticize the US policy. And then, it would give Obama the opportunity to show the world how much he cares about Israel.
Nothing doing! says our prime minister.
And on this note, I say Shabbat Shalom!
© Arlene Kushner. This material is produced by Arlene Kushner, functioning as an independent journalist. Permission is granted for it to be reproduced only with proper attribution.
If it is reproduced and emphasis is added, the fact that it has been added must be noted.
“We Have Legal Grounds” –