By: Roger Aronoff
Accuracy in Media
The mainstream media are celebrating, as a deal has been reached between Iran and the P5+1 nations. It appears, however, to be a complete capitulation by the West. CNN described it as “historic,” along the lines of Richard Nixon’s deal with China, which certainly must be music to President Obama’s ears.
But even as terms of the deal are starting to emerge, the holes in the agreement are becoming clear.
“Initial readings of the deal also indicate that Iran will be given the right to veto so-called ‘anywhere, anytime’ inspections of Iranian nuclear sites,” reports Adam Kredo for The Washington Free Beacon. “This concession has caused concern that Tehran will be able to continue hiding its nuclear work and potentially continue in secret along the pathway to a bomb.”
“In one of the most controversial concessions made by the Obama administration, a United Nations embargo on arms will also be lifted within around five years as part of the deal…” he writes. “A similar embargo on the construction of ballistic missiles, which could carry a nuclear payload, also will expire in around eight years under the deal.” So much for this deal being strictly about Iran’s nuclear program, as Secretary of State John Kerry has frequently asserted, such as when he was asked why the four Americans being held by the Iranians were not part of this agreement.
Regardless of what President Obama has said, the deal is not verifiable. Just the opposite. It actually rewards Iran with more than $100 billion in sanctions relief, money that is certain to be used by the totalitarian regime to continue to expand its hegemonic and terrorist pursuits. No one will be more determined to overlook any violations than the Obama administration, which is heavily invested in this as the President’s foreign policy legacy, which has mostly been a disaster. Obama is convinced, and rightly so, that the media will help him sell this debacle as a great foreign policy achievement.
It is clear that the two sides have different interpretations of the deal, just as they did with the so-called “framework” agreement reached in April of this year. In the official Iranian news agency IRNA the Iranians triumphantly declare that:
- “All nuclear installations and sites are to continue their work contrary to the early demands of the other party, none of them will be dismantled;”
- “The policy on preventing enrichment uranium is now failed and Iran will go ahead with its enrichment program;”
- “Iran’s nuclear infrastructure will remain intact, no centrifuges will be dismantled and research and development on key and advanced centrifuges such as IR-4, IR-5, IR-6, IR-8 will continue;” and
- “All economic, financial sanctions in banking, finance, oil, gas, petrochemical, commerce, insurance and transportations leveled by the European Union and the US under the pretext to Iran’s nuclear program, will be lifted on early stages of the agreement.”
In addition, there are many details yet to be resolved, as this statement from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) makes clear. It refers to the “Road-map between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the IAEA for the clarification of past and present outstanding issues regarding Iran’s nuclear programme.” It includes a series of target dates this year to set “out a clear sequence of activities over the coming months, including the provision by Iran of explanations regarding outstanding issues.” In other words, details to be worked out later. But in the meantime, UN sanctions will have been lifted, taking virtually all of the pressure off of Iran to cooperate with the IAEA and the P5+1.
The media appear uninterested in detailing the number of red lines that have been broken by this administration. Here are just a couple:
- The Secretary of State first said in 2013 that Iran did not have a right to enrich uranium. This agreement legitimizes Iranian enrichment only by limiting the “type” of centrifuge used and amount of uranium stockpiled and enriched.
- Iran was supposed to submit to “anywhere, anytime” inspections. Now, it has “a very protracted process of advance warning and ‘consultation’ to resolve concerns.”
The editor of the Times of Israel has laid out “16 reasons nuke deal is an Iranian victory and a Western catastrophe,” including this: “Was the Iranian regime required, as a condition for this deal, to disclose the previous military dimensions of its nuclear program—to come clean on its violations—in order both to ensure effective inspections of all relevant facilities and to shatter the Iranian-dispelled myth that it has never breached its non-proliferation obligations? No.”
Also, “Has the Iranian regime been required to submit to ‘anywhere, anytime’ inspections of any and all facilities suspected of engaging in rogue nuclear-related activity? No. And there are 14 more.
The Daily Signal, a publication of The Heritage Foundation, laid out “…the Truth About 6 of Obama’s Iran Deal Claims,” including this claim, that “Every pathway to a nuclear weapon is cut off.” Yet, as The Daily Signal points out, “Iran is permitted to retain its enrichment infrastructure, including advanced centrifuges. The administration’s concession on uranium enrichment is a serious blow to a decade old principle of U.S. nonproliferation policy. The United States worked very hard in the past to prevent allies from developing indigenous uranium enrichment capability because technologies for uranium enrichment and weapons grade enrichment are the same.”
In addition, from The Daily Signal, “Yet Iran, which developed this capability in defiance of its existing international obligations, is being rewarded for its bad behavior by lifting sanctions on its country, including sanctions concerning shipping, arms sales, transportation, banking and precious metal trade.”
President Barack Obama declared back in 2013 that no deal would be better than a bad deal. So did his State Department spokeswoman, his chief negotiator, United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power, and Secretary of State John Kerry, who called for more time to negotiate.
“We have now gotten to the point where the President was saying a year ago, ‘No deal is better than a bad deal,’ and he’s now to the point where any deal will be fine,” argued KT McFarland, an American Conservative Union (ACU) Foundation senior fellow and the moderator of a very informative and underreported panel held last month by the ACU.
“Critics of the nuclear deal sought by President Obama fear that this will be a dangerous deal because of too many one sided U.S. concessions to Iran,” Clare Lopez, a member of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi, presciently noted.
“Iran will keep all of its nuclear infrastructure, including a plutonium-producing heavy-water reactor,” she wrote. “And the U.S. reportedly has now pledged to provide Iran technical assistance to further develop its nuclear program.” These concessions appear in the text of the final deal.
Lopez, who participated in the aforementioned ACU event, added that Iran continues to condemn Jews as cockroaches, bacteria, and insects.
“There has never been a year since 1988 or so when the Iranians did not have a clandestine nuclear weapons program,” Lopez said. “The one they are negotiating in Geneva, in Vienna, in Lausanne, that’s the overt side of the program, that’s just the overt part.”
“We don’t know what we don’t know about the covert part but we are pretty confident there is one.”
President Obama is not only using his executive power to engage a hostile, theocratic Iranian regime, he is also trying to pressure future presidents and Congress into perpetuating his damaging policies. His administration is also bending over backwards not to offend the Iranian regime, while this totalitarian government does everything possible to humiliate the United States.
Obama wants a much-needed foreign policy victory during his second term in office. The violations, and the disastrous consequences, can come later—and be blamed on the missteps of a future administration.
The ultimate solution to the Iranian nuclear question—and to the issue of Iran as the leading sponsor of terrorism—is regime change. But world powers are not ready for such a discussion—and neither are the media.
Congress still has a chance to stop this “agreement” from going forward, but President Obama requires only 34 U.S. senators to prevent the override of his veto if they disapprove. Congress has 60 days to consider the deal before voting on it. There is an event in New York City’s Times Square next Wednesday, July 22, with a distinguished list of individuals who will be speaking out about the dangers of this deal, why it can’t be trusted, and what should be done to stop it. The list includes former military leaders, CIA officers, congressmen, and other policy and political activists. You can see the full list of participants here.
Israel, which arguably has the most to lose, will surely be advocating against this agreement. Even so, there will be an intense, bruising conflict to move this deal along to the point of implementation. We know that the media will be doing everything possible to play down the risks and likely implications of this agreement. But will that be enough, along with an Obama administration that pays little attention to the law, the Constitution, and America’s best interests?