When I make decisions and judgments, I try to strip things down to the bottom line. Beyond the details, and emotions, what is actually going on? What is superfluous? What facts are immutable and what is their effect?
Sometimes, there are many factors that must be weighed and a decision must be made using reason, experience, and instinct. But other times, one or two matters are determinative, and the process is simplified.
The thing that no one, supporter or opponent, can deny about the Iran deal is this: Under the agreed “framework,” after ten or 15 years, Iran will be permitted to develop all the nuclear weapons it wants. This agreement is not, as the White House claimed it would be, a deal to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program. It is merely a way to manage and delay it.
And so one logical conclusion flows from this: If you believe an Iranian nuclear weapon is intolerable, this is a very bad deal.
And an Iranian nuclear weapon is intolerable for many reasons, not the least of which is the possibility that Iran will one day use it on Israel or on the West, or hand it to someone else who will. The principle is simple. Crazy, violent, apocalyptic, militaristic, expansionist sponsors of terrorism are not to be trusted with the atom bomb.
An Iranian bomb would also mean the end of nonproliferation efforts. Iran, like North Korea before it, would share the technology with others. And the Mideast would erupt into a nuclear arms race.
This deal leaves the entire Iranian nuclear weapons production line in place. Iran will even be permitted to continue spinning thousands of centrifuges and enrich uranium, though not at the level needed for a bomb. Assuming they don’t cheat, which they always have.
This is approximately like catching a murderer murdering, leaving him out free, and allowing him to keep his gun, with the stipulation that he not have access to his ammunition for ten years. Assuming he doesn’t cheat, which he always has.
“They can take the diplomatic route and end their nuclear program or they will have to face a united world and a United States president, me, who said we’re not going to take any options off the table,” Obama said of the Iranians during the October 22, 2012 debate with Mitt Romney. That was lie. Iran took the diplomatic route, and its nuclear program continues.
Iran’s decades of illegal work on a nuclear weapon is now officially legitimized.
“I’m a little puzzled by the political agreement,” said Olli Heinonen, a previous inspections chief at the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency. “You’re going to leave Iran as a threshold state. There isn’t much room to maneuver.”
So put aside other questions, which though important, are ancillary – like what Iran will do with its current stockpile of fuel, when the sanctions will come off, and so forth. The key point here is that we are licensing a new nuclear state.
Obama supposedly hopes that the Iranian regime will become more moderate or be replaced. Where is the evidence for this?
The mullahs have been in power now for 35 years. They have just weathered an economic crisis brought by sanctions and will soon be empowered by an business boomlet once sanctions are off. During the period of sanctions, they actually extended their power throughout the Middle East.
Hitler gobbled up Europe after Munich. The Soviets invaded Afghanistan after detente. China’s communist regime remains in power and is rapidly building its military force to menace its neighbors four decades after Richard Nixon’s “opening” to the country.
And even if the Iranian theocracy were overthrown, who knows what would follow it? Would you want the Shah to have the bomb?
There is no case for this agreement. It was negotiated by Iranians confident that, despite Obama’s words, the military option had indeed been removed from the table. And they were right.
And so they got themselves, as Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu once called it, the deal of the century.