Experts: Obama admin going above and beyond nuke deal to aid Iran
by Adam Kredo • Washington Free Beacon
The Obama administration is taking steps to aid and please Iran far beyond U.S. commitments under last summer’s nuclear accord, according to experts, who warned Tuesday during testimony on Capitol Hill that the White House is becoming “dangerously close to becoming Iran’s trade promotion and business development authority.”
The Obama administration’s efforts to boost Iran’s economy and resurrect its financial sector are not required under the comprehensive nuclear agreement, yet the White House is undertaking this role to soothe relations with the Islamic Republic, nuclear experts told the Senate Banking Committee.
Iran continues to threaten to walk away from the nuclear deal unless the U.S. administration agrees to further concessions beyond the deal, sparking accusations that Iran is effectively “blackmailing” the White House, according to sources who spoke to the Washington Free Beacon. Continue reading
Obama administration repeats concern that Iran already violating nuke deal
by Adam Kredo • Washington Free Beacon
The Obama administration shifted its stance on Iran’s contested nuclear program Wednesday, writing in a letter to the United Nations that it is concerned the international community’s nuclear watchdog organization is not fully reporting on potential Iranian violations of the nuclear deal.
The administration also renewed concerns about Iran having violated its international commitments by stockpiling too much nuclear-related material. The renewed concerns come after Iran repeatedly test fired ballistic missiles in violation of current U.N. resolutions.
Yukiya Amano, chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency, or IAEA, said earlier this week that the agency is prohibited by the nuclear agreement from publicly reporting on potential violations by Iran. Continue reading
By Russ Read • The Daily Caller
The head of U.S. intelligence believes that Iran’s recent actions speak loudly to its intentions, particularly given the country’s recent provocations since the Iran nuclear deal came into effect.
Testifying to the Senate Committee on Armed Services Tuesday, director of national intelligence James Clapper gave a very somber description of what he sees as Iran’s intentions toward the U.S. now that last summer’s nuclear deal has commenced. In particular, his statements offered little assurance that Iran is acting as an honest actor with the U.S. and the other states involved in last year’s negotiations, or that the nuclear deal will stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
“Iran probably views JCPOA [Iran deal] as a means to remove sanctions while preserving nuclear capabilities, as well as the option to eventually expand its nuclear infrastructure,” said Clapper, who also noted that, so far, he sees no evidence that Iran is violating the nuclear deal. Continue reading
by George Landrith • Human Events
A good football coach knows that on third down and inches, a quarterback sneak might be the best play. Conversely, on third down and 25, his team will likely throw a long pass. The right play for one situation isn’t necessarily right in every situation.
Likewise, an effective U.S. President knows when to intervene and project strength and when to keep a low profile. Obama’s problem is that when he should show strength and resolve, he is passive and weak. And when he should show restraint and patience, he needlessly inserts himself and seeks to impose his will. Simply stated, given the circumstances, he calls the wrong play. Obama’s miscues are endangering the future of South Sudan.
South Sudan is the world’s youngest nation. In 2011, after decades of conflict and civil war, South Sudan was carved out of Sudan along cultural and geographical lines. But the new nation has had growing pains and conflict as it establishes itself as a new democracy. These difficulties have been made worse by Obama’s interference. Continue reading
by Jonathan S. Tobin • Commentary Magazine
This morning, President Obama got what he’s been working toward all year. With Senator Barbara Mikulski’s announcement that she will vote to support the Iran nuclear deal, the administration got its 34th vote in the Senate, thus assuring that the president will have enough support to sustain a veto of a resolution of disapproval of the pact. Mikulski was just the latest of a number of Senate Democrats to throw in with the president on Iran. The only suspense now is whether Obama will get to 41 and thus have enough for a filibuster and prevent a vote on the deal from even taking place. Leaving aside the terrible damage the deal does to U.S. security and the stability of the Middle East, the most far-reaching effect of the deal is that from now on Democrats own Iran. From this moment forward, every act of Iranian-sponsored terrorism, every instance of Iranian aggression and adventurism as well as the Islamist regime’s inevitable march to a nuclear weapon can be laid at the feet of a Democratic Party. With a few exceptions, the Democrats fell meekly behind a president determined to prioritize détente with Iran over the alliance with Israel and the need to defend U.S. interests. By smashing the bipartisan consensus that had existed on Iran up until this year, the Democrats have, in effect, become the hostages of the ayatollahs. This is a decision that will haunt them in the years to come.
In analyzing the struggle that was ultimately won by Obama, it must first be acknowledged that the outcome was determined primarily by a mismatch in terms of the relative power of the two sides. Continue reading
The President on Wednesday secured a 34th supporter in the Senate, enough for him to veto disapproval without fear of an override, and he began pushing for additional votes that would enable supporters to let the pact stand without a roll call.
Although the fight is lost, the Senate owes the people an up-or-down vote on one of the most consequential foreign policy agreements in decades.
Obama says he has boxed the Iranians so tightly that they have no chance of expanding a greatly reduced nuclear program in the short run, and that he or a future President could “snap back” economic sanctions should the Iranians go rogue. Thus, he argues, America will be better positioned to curb Iran for the 15-year life of the pact. Continue reading
With the Senate lacking the two-thirds majority it would need to stop him, President Obama will succeed in implementing his nuclear deal with Iran. At this point, barring a miracle, Obama has outmaneuvered the Congress and won that fight.
He has also lost the argument.
For all the millions of dollars they promised to spend influencing public opinion, his allies failed to put a dent in the overwhelming opposition among the American public. The demeaning videos they trotted out featuring vapid celebrities failed to convince the undecided to embrace this deal. Nor could they assuage the glaring problems in its terms for those following closely enough to feel confident expressing an opinion. Continue reading
By John Podhoretz • New York Post
It’s rare for people to celebrate getting 41 percent of anything. If you score 41 percent on a test, you get an F. If you win 41 percent of the vote in a two-person race, you lose. If your tax rate is 41 percent, you’re likely to feel ripped off.
In the matter of his Iran deal, President Obama and his team have spent two months working relentlessly to secure 41 percent — and now they’re claiming an enormous victory even though by any other standards what they’ve achieved is nothing but a feat of unconstitutional trickery.
They worked throughout the summer to browbeat Senate Democrats so they could get 41 of them to say they would support the Iran nuclear deal. They’re up to 42 now — that’s a mere 42 percent of the Senate. Continue reading
The review process under the Corker law never began — by the law’s own terms.
By Andrew C. McCarthy
To undermine President Obama’s atrocious Iran deal despite the Republican-controlled Congress’s irresponsible Corker legislation, it will be necessary to follow, of all things, the Corker legislation.
On Wednesday, Barbara Mikulski became the 34th Senate Democrat to announce support for the deal, which lends aid and comfort to a regime that continues to call for “Death to America.” Under the Corker Roadmap to Catastrophe, Mikulski’s assent ostensibly puts President Obama over the top. After all, the legislation sponsored by Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman Bob Corker (R., Tenn.) and other Beltway GOP leaders reverses the Constitution’s presumptions against international agreements that harm national security. In essence, Corker requires dissenters from the Iran pact to round up a two-thirds supermajority opposition in both congressional chambers (67 senators and 290 House members). If the Constitution were followed, the burden would be on the president to convince either 67 senators to support a treaty, or majorities of both chambers to make the pact legally binding through ordinary legislation. Continue reading
A 12-point drop in support since July.
by Michael Warren • Weekly Standard
A new Pew poll finds shrinking support among the American people for the nuclear deal with Iran. The poll found 49 percent are opposed to the deal, with 21 percent in support and 30 percent who say they don’t know.
That’s a 12-point drop in support for the deal from Pew’s poll two months ago, which found 33 percent supported the deal and 45 percent oppose it. Here’s more from Pew:
While the partisan divide over the nuclear agreement remains substantial, support for the deal has slipped across the board since July. Currently, 42% of Democrats approve of the agreement, while 29% disapprove and an identical percentage has no opinion. In July, 50% of Democrats approved, 27% disapproved and 22% had no opinion. Continue reading
Majority of Republicans, Democrats concerned about poor access to Tehran’s military sites
by Morgan Chalfant • Washington Free Beacon
A majority of voters from both parties are concerned about aspects of the Iran nuclear deal governing inspections of Tehran’s nuclear facilities, according to a survey released Tuesday by the University of Maryland’s Program for Public Consultation.
Participants in the national “Citizen Cabinet” survey were presented with a description of the dispute regarding Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons program and the principal components of the deal finalized in Vienna on July 14. They were then briefed on critiques of the agreement and subsequent rebuttals to those critiques.
Those surveyed were polled on the degree to which they found these criticisms or rebuttals convincing. Continue reading
By Alan M. Dershowitz • Boston Globe
A great debate is underway regarding the nuclear agreement with Iran — and the Obama administration is losing. Unhappy with the growing opposition to his legacy deal, President Obama is trying to stifle the debate by attacking the personal motives and public-communication methods of those who oppose the pact.
He recently derided some prominent opponents as “the same columnists and former administration officials that were responsible for us getting into the Iraq war.” Those comments followed last month’s characterization of deal critics as “talking heads and pundits, and folks who are not going to be making sacrifices, if in fact you end up in a conflict, who are reprising the same positions we saw during the Iraq war.”
Obama has also decried the millions spent by organizations in opposition, saying they have been “putting the squeeze” on members of Congress with TV ads and lobbying campaigns. These groups, he claims, are backed primarily by “billionaires who happily finance super PACs” and are “opposed to any deal with Iran.” In a July 18 address, he seemed particularly hostile to the influence of AIPAC; speaking a day after the pro-Israel lobbying group came out against the deal, he urged Congress to evaluate the agreement “based on facts . . . not based on lobbying.” Continue reading
by The Editors • Bloomberg View
President Barack Obama took to the airwaves today, aiming to sell Congress and the American people on the wisdom of his nuclear deal with Iran. He had a case to make but chose not to make it. He decided instead to cast legitimate criticism of his pact as ignorant warmongering.
A few examples:
“We have achieved a detailed arrangement that permanently prohibits Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.” Actually, the deal’s restrictions end abruptly after 15 years, with some of the constraints on uranium enrichment fading away after just 10. Late in the speech, Obama made the case that much can change in a decade and that the West could be in a stronger position then to continue to block Iran’s nuclear desires. But the temporary nature of the deal remained disguised.
“Many of the same people who argued for the war in Iraq are now making the case against the Iran nuclear deal.” Certainly the Iraq war was sold on spurious grounds and had tragic results. Certainly Republicans and Democrats alike were far too credulous in accepting the Bush administration’s rationale. But these facts have absolutely nothing to do with this agreement. Continue reading
by Kyle Smith • New York Post
On Wednesday, at American University, Obama said the genocidal fascist freaks in Iran who chant “Death to America” are “making common cause with the Republican caucus” for opposing the deal.
It was a gratuitous, unsupportable, vile insult. Remember six months ago, when the entire press corps had a convulsion because an ex-mayor of New York who hasn’t held public office in 14 years said, “I do not believe the president loves America”? The media demanded Rudy Giuliani apologize. They couldn’t talk about anything else for days.
Now the sitting president of the United States says the entire Republican caucus not only doesn’t love America but doesn’t like America, even hates America. But not only that — craves death for America. By logical extension, anyone who agrees with the Republican caucus on the Iran deal also must be in “common cause” with the “Death to America” savages. Continue reading
by Charles Krauthammer • Washington Post
The latest Quinnipiac poll shows that the American public rejects the president’s Iran deal by more than 2 to 1. This is astonishing. The public generally gives the president deference on major treaties. Just a few weeks ago, a majority supported the deal.
What happened? People learned what’s in it.
And don’t be fooled by polls that present, as fact, the administration’s position in the very question . The Post/ABC poll assures the respondent that, for example, “international inspectors would monitor Iran’s facilities, and if Iran is caught breaking the agreement economic sanctions would be imposed again. Do you support or oppose this agreement?”
Well, if you put it that way, sure. But it is precisely because these claims are so tendentious and misleading that public — and congressional — opinion is turning. Continue reading