Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Blumenthal Says Yes to Iran Deal, Issues Manifesto

U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal announced he would vote in favor of the Obama/Kerry/Khamenei deal on the very day President Barack Obama had acquired enough votes in Congress to assure that any veto override would not occur.

Mr. Blumenthal has issued a manifesto supporting his decision, a convoluted thousand word media release that quickly collapses from its own internal stresses.

Mr. Blumenthal supports the deal because he prefers diplomacy to war – even, it would appear a diplomacy that enriches Iran and winks at the likely nuclearization of the Middle East.

The war or diplomacy” meme, as the twitter crowd would have it, was never a serious proposition; it was a gambit used by proponents of the deal as a rhetorical defense mechanism. The sanctions imposed by the United States and its allies WERE a diplomatic tool. In removing the sanctions, the Obama administration has opened the doors in the Middle East to war and nuclear proliferation. The ink was hardly dry on the deal before Saudi Arabia, which takes the blustering of warmongers in Iran more seriously than Mr. Blumenthal and the other six members of Connecticut’s U.S. Congressional Delegation, all Democrats marching in lockstep with Mr. Obama’s ruinous “lead from behind” policy in the Middle East, began shopping around to purchase nuclear weapons. War – diplomacy by other means – does not shrink before powerless diplomats. At the victorious conclusion of World War II, the United States was  able to exert diplomatic influence on its defeated enemies because it had won the war.

“My two paramount goals have been to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran and do so by peaceful means,” Mr. Blumenthal announced in his manifesto. “I believe the proposed agreement, using diplomacy, not military force, is the best path now available to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran.”

How so? Even supporters of the deal acknowledge that Mr. Obama’s diplomatic entente will not prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear capacity in time. On this point, Mr. Blumenthal fires off his howitzers. The agreement, Mr. Blumenthal acknowledges, has shortcomings. But the shortcomings may be overcome if the United States will “seek with our allies to correct the flaws in this agreement and encourage and enable effective diplomacy against Iran’s regional influence. We can work together to crack down on terror financing with overwhelming sanctions; agree by law that a nuclear-armed Iran will never be permitted; and that our allies, especially Israel, will be provided with assets needed to deter Iran.”

One cannot read these lines without choking with laughter. The United States, under the leadership of “lead from behind” President Obama, has just abolished sanctions on Iran that – everyone will agree – had put a serious crimp in Iran’s hegemonic ambitions. The deal itself decoupled Iran’s support of terrorist activities in the Middle East and the particulars of the Obama/Kerry/Khamenei agreement. Both supporters and critics of the deal agree that the sanction regimen cannot be reassembled.

So then, who precisely is to “work together to crack down on terror financing with overwhelming sanctions?” If the sanctions that have been withdrawn to secure a promise from Iran that it will not develop its nuclear capacity for, say, ten years cannot be replicated – and they cannot – what effective sanctions applied unilaterally by the United States will persuade the duplicitous Mr. Khamenei to relent in establishing, with the help of Putin’s Russia, a new hegemonic presence in the Middle East? And what effective sanctions will prevent a newly enriched Iran from purchasing a nuclear deployment system from “Axis of Evil Nations” such as an expansionist Russia, North Korea or even China?

If the sanctions removed from Iran are to be increased (How?) and reapplied to counter “Iran’s role as the leading state sponsor of terrorism,” what assurance can Mr. Blumenthal give us that Mr. Khamenei will not regard the reimposition as severing the deal struck between Mr. Obama and Mr. Khamenei on the future development of Iran’s nuclear capacity, leading – inescapably, Mr. Blumenthal tells us in his manifesto – to war?

Under the reassuring heading “Preventing a nuclear-armed Iran," Mr. Blumenthal advises;

“The United States must reaffirm that Iran will never be allowed to obtain a nuclear weapon and any means necessary will be used to stop it from ever accumulating enough highly-enriched uranium or weapons-grade plutonium to produce one. Congress must articulate in statute our policy towards Iranian violations both during this agreement and afterwards so it is clear we will defend our vital interests in the Persian Gulf region.”

This is a war Tom-Tom. Who in the United States is to “reaffirm that Iran will never be allowed to obtain a nuclear weapon?” Congress? Why, dear me, the Congress cannot even debate the present pro-Iranian deal because Mr. Obama has cleverly labeled his pact a “deal” rather than a treaty. And Mr. Blumenthal nowhere has indicated his disappointment that the Congress will not be voting on the deal because pro-deal Democrats in the Congress have cornered a sufficient number of votes to dispense with a formal vote. The Congress is a coward.

Who then will reaffirm an iron resolve to prevent Iran from constructing or buying nuclear weapons? President Obama? He is a lame duck “lead from behind” commander-in-chief who just now is concerned with establishing a legacy. Mr. Obama can hardly be expected to torpedo his own deal.

Who then? Mr. Blumenthal?


Let the laughter begin.
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