Experts Weigh In on the Iran Deal

President Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry, and administration officials threw Israel, the Sunni allies, and the national security of America under the bus with this terrible Iranian nuclear deal.  American Thinker interviewed national security experts regarding their opinion on the nuclear piece of the agreement.

Everyone interviewed regards this as a bad deal because it allows Iran a pathway to a bomb, the missiles to deliver it, and money to pay for it without any behavior change on the part of this terrorist supporting regime.  All the experts are emphatically in agreement that even if they follow the rules, Iran will have the capability for a bomb.

Although the president has argued that this deal is good for national security, retired lt. general Michael Flynn argues just the opposite: "I don't think President Obama looks at the long term of what is best for our national security versus what looks best on some report card.  For the past forty years it did not matter if a Republican or Democrat was in power; they followed a strategic policy.  Tehran is developing increasingly sophisticated missiles, improving the range and accuracy of its other missile systems, and is also acquiring advanced naval and aerospace capabilities.  This is just insane."

The chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Ed Royce (R-CA), reiterated the secretary of defense's testimony that the "I" in ICBM (missiles) stands for intercontinental, with the ability to deliver a WMD payload to America.  These missiles are needed only for a nuclear warhead.  Royce also stressed that the Iranian nuclear infrastructure remains intact, and that it has not given up any of its facilities, including Fordow, which is buried deep under a mountaintop.

Richard Grenell, a former Bush diplomat, says that the verification piece of the agreement is a joke.  "President Obama's refusal to learn from Iran's history may be the reason it will get a bomb.  Iran refused to allow access to its military sites in 2006, and the U.N. responded 30 days later with the first of multiple rounds of economic sanctions for their unwillingness to cooperate.  Nine years later, Secretary of State John Kerry blinked.  President Obama and Mr. Kerry withdrew the current U.S. demands on Iran and rewarded the Islamic Republic with sanctions relief, despite the fact that Iran has never allowed unfettered access to its military bases."  Many interviewed agree with him and point to the side deals between the IAEA and Iran, which undercuts the idea of inspection.  Former CIA director Michael Hayden says, "This deal cannot be premised on Iran being a nation worthy of trust.  This time it's 'distrust, so verify.'"

Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA), the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, is not convinced that Iranians will stop working on a bomb, since this agreement allows them to continue the research and development.  He feels that the lifting of the sanctions "has squandered thirty years of the international community working together.  Allowing Iran to have 24 days for inspections is very suspicious, since everyone knows you need to have immediate access to catch someone if they are cheating.  I have no idea why the Obama administration agreed to this."

Lt. General Flynn agrees and cannot understand why there was not an entire inspection of Iran's nuclear effort before the negotiations started.  "We don't know the extent of their nuclear program: how much, the locations, and what will happen with the nuclear waste.  The intelligence community does not have complete 'eyes on' the totality of the Iranian nuclear program, nor can it guarantee that we have identified all of Iran's nuclear facilities and processes.  Moreover, given the history of the nuclear age, it is prudent to conclude that there are elements of Iran's nuclear program that still remain hidden from view."

It has become obvious with the Obama administration's action that they are afraid that the bad ramifications of this deal are resonating with Americans.  Congressman Royce is dismayed that the Obama administration chose to have the U.N. vote on this deal before "America's representatives.  I think it is entirely inappropriate and divisive that this administration votes to lift U.N.-backed sanctions should Congress reject the agreement.  I spoke to the administration and told then not to go this route, wrote a letter, and even contacted our U.N. ambassador.  This is just another example and one more argument between Congress and the president."

The president continues to falsely say that those opposed to the deal are "warmongers" and that opponents offer no viable alternative.  Not so, says Senator Lindsey Graham, who told American Thinker, "The reason I am launching the 'No Nukes For Iran' Tour is to educate the public about the threats we face from the dangers of this bad deal.  This is so far away from our original goals.  We are not stopping the program, but locking it in place.  I hope to encourage members of Congress to vote against this bad deal.  As I said on CNN, '[t]his is a lousy deal negotiated by an incompetent Commander-in-Chief.'  I am hoping this will not be approved so that the next president will have leverage to get a better deal.  There is an alternative: congressional sanctions.  If you are a French or German company doing business in Iran you will not get access to American banking.  So the vote really does matter where tougher sanctions should be implemented.  We could have extracted more by staying tough."

Retired lt. general Michael T. Flynn cites North Korea as a lesson to be learned.  He believes that North Korea was an "in-our-face moment.  The same woman who was a part of these negotiations was also instrumental in the Korean negotiations. Remember, the United States had suspected for well over a decade that North Korea had a uranium enrichment program but did not learn about its centrifuge plant at Yongbyon until the plant was shown to a delegation of former U.S. officials in 2010.  North Korea did not stay on a timeline, so what is to keep Iran from staying on one? Just as some do not blame President Clinton for North Korea getting a bomb, I don't think President Obama cares about the ramifications of this deal with Iran because he will be out of office."

This is a good point, considering the statements of President Clinton after the Korean deal and the statements of President Obama today.  President Clinton in 1994: "This is a good deal for the United States.  North Korea will freeze and then dismantle its nuclear program.  South Korea and our other allies will be better protected.  The entire world will be safer as we slow the spread of nuclear weapons.  The United States and international inspectors will carefully monitor North Korea to make sure it keeps its commitments."

Sound familiar? Compare that to this statement by President Obama: "International inspectors will have unprecedented access not only to Iranian nuclear facilities, but to the entire supply chain that supports Iran's nuclear program, from uranium mills that provide the raw materials to the centrifuge production and storage facilities that support the program.  I am confident that we can show that this deal is good for the security of the United States, for our allies, and for the world."

Congressman Nunes disagrees with this statement, since the president never insisted that Iran should not have even "one centrifuge, which is one too much because it allows for development capability.  North Korea is at least checked by China and Japan, while Iran is based on religious fundamentalist law."

Elliott Abrams, the Middle East advisor to President G.W. Bush, told American Thinker the Bush administration set a precedent that the Obama administration should have used as a framework.  "We signed nuclear agreements with Jordan and the United Arab Emirates because they wanted nuclear power.  They agreed to not have one centrifuge.  This prevented enrichment, which they were fine with."

This Iranian deal needs to be stopped.  Hopefully Americans will decide to take action and call their senators and representatives.  Let's not look back on this in future years and regret doing nothing.  The words "never again" should still mean something.  As Michael Oren, the former Israeli ambassador to the U.S., told American Thinker, "the Israeli position is that this is an irrational regime.  This is about our survival as a people.  It's about our children and grandchildren.  What may look like an academic debate here in America is for us in Israel a matter of life and death."

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.