Role reversal: France pre-empts American surrender to Iran's nuke program

Thomas Lifson
It is a measure of how low American has fallen on the world stage that France was forced to man up and prevent a sell-out deal at the nuclear talks in Geneva that would have, in the words of the New York Times, "do too little to curb Iran's uranium enrichment or to stop the development of a nuclear reactor capable of producing plutonium." The Times of Israel reports:

Talks in Geneva between world powers and Iran ended early Sunday morning without a deal on Iran's rogue nuclear program, after hitting a snag on Saturday when France questioned the terms of a proposed agreement. The sides agreed to meet again in Geneva on November 20, but at the level of "political directors" rather than foreign ministers.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his government were appalled at what the US was prepared to offer. Yaakov Lappin of the Jerusalem Post:

The US folded during negotiations in Geneva with Iran over its nuclear project, political sources in Israel charged on Saturday. They added that Israel was stunned when it learned over the weekend that a version of the deal being proposed was far worse than it believed.

Senior political sources said that the deal that has been sitting on the negotiations table since the weekend is "very bad." It calls on Iran to stop enriching uranium to the 20 percent level, but allows them to continue enriching uranium to 3.5% at all of its enrichment sites. In addition it fails to place a limitation on the number of centrifuges in Tehran's possession, estimated to number 19,000.

Rewards to Iran include the unfreezing of $3 billion of fuel funds, an easing of sanctions on the petrochemical and gold sectors, an easing of sanctions on replacement parts for planes and a loosening of restrictions on the Iranian car industry.

If such a deal goes ahead, "We might head down a lane that will lead to a collapse of the sanctions regime. This is very grave," the source continued. "This won't really stop the [nuclear] project. It will give the Iranians breathing space."

The "fundamental transformation" promised by President Obama seems to include a nuclear-armed Iran, which would certainly alter forever the US's strategic options in Middle East. No longer with the Sixth Fleet be able to operate so as to enforce our will. And the mad mullahs would be free to putrsue their goal of wiping Israel off the map, no matter what the human toll. It's all about paving the way for the Mahdi, you see, and what we call Armageddon is a necessary step in their plans. I'd defgintieley call that a fundamental transformation.

Of course, the Saudis are not taking this lying down. They know that their own Shiite population is concentrated in the Persian Gulf oil producing region of the Kingdom, and that the mullahs foresee themselves becoming the hegemons of the Middle East with a stranglehold on the oil resources necessary for the preservation of the prosperity of the industrialized world, not to mention the rising ambitions of China and India. There would be no better way to subdue the infidels than to control this oil

So the Saudis are making plans to import the nukes that Pakistan has produced, with Saudi funding. Mark Urban of the BBC reports:

Saudi Arabia has invested in Pakistani nuclear weapons projects, and believes it could obtain atomic bombs at will, a variety of sources have told BBC Newsnight.

While the kingdom's quest has often been set in the context of countering Iran's atomic programme, it is now possible that the Saudis might be able to deploy such devices more quickly than the Islamic republic.

Earlier this year, a senior Nato decision maker told me that he had seen intelligence reporting that nuclear weapons made in Pakistan on behalf of Saudi Arabia are now sitting ready for delivery.

The Saudis have made no secret of the fact that they do not intend to be outgunned by the mullahs:

Since 2009, when King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia warned visiting US special envoy to the Middle East Dennis Ross that if Iran crossed the threshold, "we will get nuclear weapons", the kingdom has sent the Americans numerous signals of its intentions.

Although both the Saudis and the mullahs loathe Israel, they actually resent each other even more. The Sunni-Shia split goes back much farther than Islam's confrontation with the Western world, and it is a matter that speaks to the very legitimacy of both regimes. The Saudis are the guardians of Mecca and Medina, and that is their justification to their own people of the harsh rule of the royal family, not to mention to luxurious lifestyle of the elite. The mullahs, for their part, have paved a superhighway to the well from which the 12th Mahdi is set to emerge, their own justiufication for the privatgions they force on the Iranian people.

In short, thanks to the inept (or worse) diplomacy of the Obama administration, we may very soon see a nuclear armed Iran and a nuclear armed Saudi Arabia with itchy fingers on their nuclear triggers. The possibility of nuking a substantial portion of the world's oil supply would then be catastrophically high. A few nuclear bombs on the right places surrounding the Gulf could so constrict the oil supply that filling the tank on the family SUV would require hundreds of dollars, and tens of millions of people in the third world would starve, deprived of fertilizer and energy to supply the basics.

The French, bless them, see the stakes far more clearly than does the Obama administration and most of our media. Americans love to bash France as, in Jonah Goldberg's phrase, "cheese-eating surrender monkeys," but France is pragmatic in foreign policy. They cooperated with the Israelis on the attack on Iraqi reactors that they built. In Mali, recently, they kicked ass against the jihadis when their interests were threatened.

Americans tend to underrate France for various historical and cultural reasons. They are certainly not perfect, but not nearly as weak, inept, and effeminate as Americans believe. We could learn a lot from them on various topics, including infrastructure civil engineering, which they accomplish cheaply and efficiently compared to us.

It is a measure of how low American has fallen on the world stage that France was forced to man up and prevent a sell-out deal at the nuclear talks in Geneva that would have, in the words of the New York Times, "do too little to curb Iran's uranium enrichment or to stop the development of a nuclear reactor capable of producing plutonium." The Times of Israel reports:

Talks in Geneva between world powers and Iran ended early Sunday morning without a deal on Iran's rogue nuclear program, after hitting a snag on Saturday when France questioned the terms of a proposed agreement. The sides agreed to meet again in Geneva on November 20, but at the level of "political directors" rather than foreign ministers.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his government were appalled at what the US was prepared to offer. Yaakov Lappin of the Jerusalem Post:

The US folded during negotiations in Geneva with Iran over its nuclear project, political sources in Israel charged on Saturday. They added that Israel was stunned when it learned over the weekend that a version of the deal being proposed was far worse than it believed.

Senior political sources said that the deal that has been sitting on the negotiations table since the weekend is "very bad." It calls on Iran to stop enriching uranium to the 20 percent level, but allows them to continue enriching uranium to 3.5% at all of its enrichment sites. In addition it fails to place a limitation on the number of centrifuges in Tehran's possession, estimated to number 19,000.

Rewards to Iran include the unfreezing of $3 billion of fuel funds, an easing of sanctions on the petrochemical and gold sectors, an easing of sanctions on replacement parts for planes and a loosening of restrictions on the Iranian car industry.

If such a deal goes ahead, "We might head down a lane that will lead to a collapse of the sanctions regime. This is very grave," the source continued. "This won't really stop the [nuclear] project. It will give the Iranians breathing space."

The "fundamental transformation" promised by President Obama seems to include a nuclear-armed Iran, which would certainly alter forever the US's strategic options in Middle East. No longer with the Sixth Fleet be able to operate so as to enforce our will. And the mad mullahs would be free to putrsue their goal of wiping Israel off the map, no matter what the human toll. It's all about paving the way for the Mahdi, you see, and what we call Armageddon is a necessary step in their plans. I'd defgintieley call that a fundamental transformation.

Of course, the Saudis are not taking this lying down. They know that their own Shiite population is concentrated in the Persian Gulf oil producing region of the Kingdom, and that the mullahs foresee themselves becoming the hegemons of the Middle East with a stranglehold on the oil resources necessary for the preservation of the prosperity of the industrialized world, not to mention the rising ambitions of China and India. There would be no better way to subdue the infidels than to control this oil

So the Saudis are making plans to import the nukes that Pakistan has produced, with Saudi funding. Mark Urban of the BBC reports:

Saudi Arabia has invested in Pakistani nuclear weapons projects, and believes it could obtain atomic bombs at will, a variety of sources have told BBC Newsnight.

While the kingdom's quest has often been set in the context of countering Iran's atomic programme, it is now possible that the Saudis might be able to deploy such devices more quickly than the Islamic republic.

Earlier this year, a senior Nato decision maker told me that he had seen intelligence reporting that nuclear weapons made in Pakistan on behalf of Saudi Arabia are now sitting ready for delivery.

The Saudis have made no secret of the fact that they do not intend to be outgunned by the mullahs:

Since 2009, when King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia warned visiting US special envoy to the Middle East Dennis Ross that if Iran crossed the threshold, "we will get nuclear weapons", the kingdom has sent the Americans numerous signals of its intentions.

Although both the Saudis and the mullahs loathe Israel, they actually resent each other even more. The Sunni-Shia split goes back much farther than Islam's confrontation with the Western world, and it is a matter that speaks to the very legitimacy of both regimes. The Saudis are the guardians of Mecca and Medina, and that is their justification to their own people of the harsh rule of the royal family, not to mention to luxurious lifestyle of the elite. The mullahs, for their part, have paved a superhighway to the well from which the 12th Mahdi is set to emerge, their own justiufication for the privatgions they force on the Iranian people.

In short, thanks to the inept (or worse) diplomacy of the Obama administration, we may very soon see a nuclear armed Iran and a nuclear armed Saudi Arabia with itchy fingers on their nuclear triggers. The possibility of nuking a substantial portion of the world's oil supply would then be catastrophically high. A few nuclear bombs on the right places surrounding the Gulf could so constrict the oil supply that filling the tank on the family SUV would require hundreds of dollars, and tens of millions of people in the third world would starve, deprived of fertilizer and energy to supply the basics.

The French, bless them, see the stakes far more clearly than does the Obama administration and most of our media. Americans love to bash France as, in Jonah Goldberg's phrase, "cheese-eating surrender monkeys," but France is pragmatic in foreign policy. They cooperated with the Israelis on the attack on Iraqi reactors that they built. In Mali, recently, they kicked ass against the jihadis when their interests were threatened.

Americans tend to underrate France for various historical and cultural reasons. They are certainly not perfect, but not nearly as weak, inept, and effeminate as Americans believe. We could learn a lot from them on various topics, including infrastructure civil engineering, which they accomplish cheaply and efficiently compared to us.