Iran: Preventing a Deal with the Devil
President Obama should worry about his legacy concerning the possible deal with Iran. He will become the 21st-century Neville Chamberlain. This is such a bad plan on many accounts, yet the president is so narcissistic that he is doubling down as the criticism increases.
Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu was asked to speak to Congress on the Iranian deal, much to President Obama's chagrin. The president did not want the American people to hear the prime minister's arguments regarding this horrific plan. Many in Congress agree with the assessment. Congressman Tom Rooney (R-Fla.) told American Thinker, "America's special relationship with Israel is vital to the security and interests of both of our nations, and it will always transcend politics. No one understands the threat that Iran poses to Middle Eastern peace, the very existence of the nation of Israel, and the Jewish people better than Prime Minister Netanyahu, and he proved that again in his address."
Yet there were some Democrats who made disparaging remarks after hearing the speech. Democrats called Israeli leader Netanyahu condescending and childish and told him to go home. President Obama only read the speech and found "nothing new." House of Representatives Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said afterwards that as a friend of Israel, she was near tears during his speech, calling it "an insult to the intelligence of the United States" and "condescension toward our knowledge of the threat posed by Iran."
Speaking of condescending, how about all the past remarks the president and those in his administration have said about Israel? Obama called for the creation of an independent Palestinian state in his "new beginning" address during a visit to Cairo in June of 2009, which heightened tensions with Israel. The president said the U.S. "does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements" on land occupied during the Six-Day War, which was claimed by Palestinians as their territory. Obama proposed to make the 1967 borders the starting line for a peace deal, saying it was not "based on reality, on unshakeable facts." And there was the "hot mic" incident at the G-20 summit in 2011, when Obama and former French president Nicolas Sarkozy exchanged disparaging remarks about the Israeli prime minister. According to a French interpreter, in response to Sarkozy's comment "I cannot bear Netanyahu; he's a liar," Obama reportedly replied, "You're fed up with him, but I have to deal with him even more often than you."
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) told American Thinker, "What this administration has utterly failed to acknowledge is that Iran poses an existential threat to the nation of Israel and to the United States. A recent article quoted anonymous senior administration officials referring to Prime Minister Netanyahu with an epithet for poultry manure. But what was startling about that article was not the invective, not the disrespect, not the contempt heaped upon the leader of the nation of Israel. The most disturbing part of that article was a quote from that same senior adviser who said the best thing of all is that we have delayed Israel from acting so that it's too late for Netanyahu to stop Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons arsenal. This is lunacy, and America must stand up and say on the world stage that under no circumstances will Iran be allowed to acquire nuclear weapons."
Maybe the Democrats and those in the Obama administration should take a page from Newt Gingrich, who told American Thinker, "Prime Minister Netanyahu has been a staunch ally of America and the cause of freedom. As the leader of Israel, a country the Iranian dictatorship has threatened to destroy, he has an unavoidable obligation to his country to be concerned about any agreement involving Iranian nuclear arms."
The president said the Israeli prime minister did not put forth any new ideas in the speech to Congress. Elliott Abrams, former foreign policy advisor to George W. Bush, feels that the president and those in his administration are attempting to disengage from the actual arguments Netanyahu is making. "The question every American should be asking is who is right, not what is new. Now the president is saying if you don't like this deal, you are a warmonger. He is ignoring the facts, that this is a bad deal."
Abrams also suggests that Secretary of State Kerry was wrong in not insisting on a quid pro quo, linking any deal with Iran's behavior toward women's rights, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and recognition of Israel's right to exist. According to Senator Cruz, the sunset provision in ten years should not be lifted unless Iran stops being the world's greatest exporter of terrorism. It has to stop bullying neighboring countries like Syria and Lebanon, and it has to stop calling for the destruction of Israel.
Prime Minister Netanyahu in the speech correctly pointed out that a nuclear-armed Iran would start a nuclear arms race in the Middle East. Abrams wants to remind Americans that in the first years of his administration, the president talked about nuclear disarmament. Yet this deal could lead to nuclear proliferation, with Turkey, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia obtaining a bomb themselves. He also says that this administration should consider that "there could be a regime change within these nations. Someone could come to power that also wants to annihilate Israel. Having all these nukes allows for the possibility of a terrorist group getting one."
What also must be considered are the North Korea negotiations. As the prime minister articulated in the speech, "I can only urge the leaders of the world not to repeat the mistakes of the past." What comes to mind is how easy it was for North Korea to reverse its commitments once its nuclear infrastructure was left standing. North Korea has shown that the options are limited if a country obtains nuclear weapons.
Senator Cruz insists that this bad deal threatens not only Israel, but also America, reminding people how Iran recently blew up a model of an American aircraft carrier. He noted, "And for those who say, Well that may be Israel's concern, but how does that impact America?, it is not by accident that Iran refers to Israel as the 'Little Satan' and America as the 'Great Satan.' I would note 'Great Satan' is not a compliment. In Iran they have a holiday celebrated every year, the Death to America day. It is the anniversary of Iran taking American hostages. Just over a year ago, Iran named as its United Nations ambassador one of the terrorists that participated in holding Americans hostage in 1979, Hamid Aboutelabi. I was proud to file legislation to prevent known terrorists from serving as U.N. ambassadors, legislation that unanimously passed both houses of Congress and was signed into law by President Obama."
What can be done to prevent this bad deal? The senator agrees with Abrams, that any deal must include restrictions on Iran developing ballistic missiles whose sole purpose is to deliver nuclear weapons. Both feel there should be bipartisan support of the Corker-Menendez and the Kirk-Menendez legislation. Senator Cruz also would like to gather support for a bill he filed last year, the Sanction Iran, Safeguard America Act, which withholds funding to prevent negotiations until certain conditions have been met, including freeing American prisoners of conscience held in Iranian prisons, complying with unconstrained IAEA inspections, dismantling its capacity to enrich uranium, ending its intercontinental ballistic missile program, ending its money-laundering operation through the Central Bank of Iran, and demonstrating its renunciation of state-sponsored terrorism.
President Obama should consider the sentiment best expressed by Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah), "Israel is our greatest partner in the Middle East and one of the only countries in the world that shares our values of freedom and security so strongly. Anything less than a deal that prevents Iran from having a future nuclear weapon is unacceptable and should be rejected if it will jeopardize the safety of the United States and our allies." Instead of being resentful of those who are standing up to this bad deal, the president should realize he is making a deal with the devil.
The author writes for American Thinker. She has done book reviews and author interviews and has written a number of national security, political, and foreign policy articles.