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March 27, 2015 / 7 Nisan, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘Iran deal’

Bomb Iran, Says John Bolton

Thursday, March 26th, 2015

Bombing Iran is the only effective way to stop its nuclear threat in its tracks and prevent a regional nuclear arms race, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations wrote n The New York Times Thursday.

Bolton previously has called on Israel to bomb Iran. With the United States and the other P5+1 powers on the verge of signing a deal with Iran, Bolton wrote that neither sanctions nor a “bad deal” will prevent what he called a “bad situation” from becoming  the “brink of catastrophe”

Bolton wrote:

The arms race has begun….No way would the Sunni Saudis allow the Shiite Persians to outpace them in the quest for dominance within Islam and Middle Eastern geopolitical hegemony….

Ironically perhaps, Israel’s nuclear weapons have not triggered an arms race. Other states in the region understood — even if they couldn’t admit it publicly — that Israel’s nukes were intended as a deterrent, not as an offensive measure.

Iran is a different story. Extensive progress in uranium enrichment and plutonium reprocessing reveal its ambitions. Saudi, Egyptian and Turkish interests are complex and conflicting, but faced with Iran’s threat, all have concluded that nuclear weapons are essential.

He pointed out that “Saudi Arabia has signed nuclear cooperation agreements with South Korea, China, France and Argentina, aiming to build a total of 16 reactors by 2030..” Pakistan, whose leaders recently met with Saudi officials, could supply Egypt and Turkey with nuclear technology, and there always is North Korea ready to make a buck by helping to arm the world with nukes.

“Iran will not negotiate away its nuclear program,” Bolton wrote. “Nor will sanctions block its building a broad and deep weapons infrastructure. The inconvenient truth is that only military action like Israel’s 1981 attack on Saddam Hussein’s Osirak reactor in Iraq or its 2007 destruction of a Syrian reactor, designed and built by North Korea, can accomplish what is required.

“Time is terribly short, but a strike can still succeed.”

One of the formidable obstacles to an attack on Iran is the difficulty of reaching its underground nuclear sites, but Bolton argued Thursday that there is no need to destroy Tehran’s entire nuclear infrastructure.

It is enough to set back Iran’s nuclear program by three to five years, he said.

He concluded that if President Barack Obama does not stop Iran’s nuclear development program, his “biggest legacy could be a thoroughly nuclear-weaponized Middle East.”

Iran Confers with Russia before Resumption of Talks with P5+1

Tuesday, March 24th, 2015

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has consulted with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in preparation for a resumption of negotiations Wednesday with the P5+1 towards reaching an interim agreement before the end of the month on Tehran’s nuclear program.

Russia is a member of the P5+1 but also has a vested interest in Iran’s nuclear development, in which it has invested billions of dollars.

“It’s high time for the US and its allies to choose: pressure or agreement,” Zarif wrote on his Twitter account last week.

 

White House Escalates War on Netanyahu with Allegations of Spying

Tuesday, March 24th, 2015

The Obama administration has escalated its political war on Israel with new charges – denied by Israel – that Jerusalem lobbied Congress against a deal with Iran by using information collected from spying on secret talks.

Israel has formally denied the allegations, admitting it obtained information but explaining it did so by spying on Iran and by receiving intelligence from European officials.

The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday morning, “The spying operation was part of a broader campaign by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government to penetrate the negotiations and then help build a case against the emerging terms of the deal.”

More significantly, the newspaper added:

The espionage didn’t upset the White House as much as Israel’s sharing of inside information with U.S. lawmakers and others to drain support from a high-stakes deal intended to limit Iran’s nuclear program, current and former officials said.

It is one thing for the U.S. and Israel to spy on each other. It is another thing for Israel to steal U.S. secrets and play them back to U.S. legislators to undermine U.S. diplomacy,’ said a senior U.S. official briefed on the matter.

The White House accusations are based on the conclusions that information Israel acquired could only have been obtained from spying on confidential talks by U.S. officials.

A senior official from the office of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told the Journal:

These allegations are utterly false. The state of Israel does not conduct espionage against the United States or Israel’s other allies. The false allegations are clearly intended to undermine the strong ties between the United States and Israel and the security and intelligence relationship we share.

No one believes that the United States and Israel don’t spy on each other, but Israel has been less ambitious since Jonathan Pollard was caught nearly 30 years exposing for Israel secret information from the Pentagon, where he worked.

But no one, except perhaps Obama, believes that Israel is not capable of spying on Iran.

“Did the administration really believe we wouldn’t find out?” about the closed-door talks by American officials from other sources, an Israel official said.

Israeli officials informed senior members of Congress of details on the proposed deal, including the compromise that would allow Iran to operate approximately 6,500 centrifuges for enriching uranium.

Obama has two problems concerning his policies on Israel and Iran – Netanyahu and Congress. Both are sure that any deal with Iran on its nuclear development program will be a bad deal.

President Obama still is sulking over Netanyahu’s speech to Congress two weeks ago in which he warned against a deal. Netanyahu has the support of a majority of Congress and possibly even enough to override a presidential veto of a law that would require him to submit a deal to the legislature for review.

Obama and Netanyahu have become paranoid of each other. The Prime Minister does not trust the president to keep Iran from having the capability of obtaining a nuclear weapon that could be aimed at Israel and fulfill the Islamic Republic’s stated dream of wiping Israel off the map.

Obama and Netanyahu have totally lost trust in each other over the White House’s cherished “two-state solution” and “a negotiated peace” that Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas has ditched long ago but for which Obama wants to make Netanyahu the scapegoat.

Not coincidentally, Congress is on Israel’s side, while President Obama and his foreign policy team constantly ignore official Palestinian Authority incitement for terror and turn a blind eye to PA documents calling for all of Israel to be “Palestine.”

The establishment pundits are having a field day charging that Netanyahu is at fault for supposedly forcing a cold war on Obama.

Democrats Ready to Side with GOP and Override Obama Veto of Iran Bill

Monday, March 16th, 2015

Republican senators may have a veto-proof majority from Democrats backing a bill that would require  President Barack Obama to submit any deal with Iran to Congressional review, Politico reported.

Almost all 54 Republican senators are on board as are more than 12 Democrats, which comes out to more than the two-thirds majority that is needed to override a presidential veto.

It is not clear if the Democrats supporting the bill would go so far as to vote against a veto by Obama, but a two-thirds majority would make it very difficult for him to exercise his veto power over a law giving Congress 60 days to review a deal.

The Democrats were offended by the “open letter to the leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran”” initiated by Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton and which warned Iran that Congress might be able to challenge an agreement between President Obama and Iran.

The White House and the other P5+1 powers reportedly are considering going through the U.N. Security Council to lift sanctions, which would raise a question in international law concerning Congress’ power to decide to re-impose sanctions.

The legalities may not matter because it is doubtful if Obama would be willing to act against such a large majority in the Congress.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has said there is chance that a deal could be struck with Iran as early as this week,” but his constant optimism has to be taken with a few grains of uranium.

The open letter damaged relations with Democratic senators, but Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker, who did not sign the open letter, said:

Let a couple days go by. We think there’s going to be really ignited momentum. Nobody’s dropping out. We’ve had reaffirmed commitment [from Democrats.]”

The White House is trying to convince Sen. Corker to hold off on the bill and let the administration try to reach an agreement with Iran, but that night not happen until June even if a framework agreement is signed this month.

Even several Democrats are not willing to wait.

Florida Sen. Bill Nelson told Politico that he still would back the bill demanding Congressional approvals for a deal even though “this is a sad day in America when people are trying to kill negotiations that are underway.”

Another bill, proposed by Illinois Republican Mark Kirk, would put into law that sanctions will be slapped against Iran if Congress doubts the Islamic Republic’s commitment to reach a deal or stand by its promises.

According to Kirk, there are enough Democrats behind him to give the bill more than a two-thirds majority.

Kerry – We Can Sign Iran Deal in Coming Days

Sunday, March 15th, 2015

The Obama administration and the Iranian regime are approaching a new round of talks in Switzerland on Sunday with conditions that make a deal on its nuclear development a tough bet.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told a news conference in Cairo on Saturday:

I can’t tell you whether or not we can get a deal, whether we are close… So we believe very much that there’s not anything that’s going to change in April or May or June that suggests that at that time, a decision you can’t make now will be made then. If it’s peaceful, let’s get it done. And my hope is that in the next days, that will be possible.

The question is, “What is ‘peaceful’?”

If the Obama sticks top its guns, and that is not a given, that Iran cannot be allowed to develop weapons-grade plutonium at its unfinished Arak reactor and cannot use its Fordo nuclear plant to enrich uranium, no deal is possible.

Ali Akbar Salehi, director of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), stated on Saturday:

The function and nature of the Arak Heavy-Water Reactor…will remain unchanged as a heavy water facility…. “We are determined to make use of this [Fordo enrichment plant] site according to the guidelines of Iran’s Supreme Leader (Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei) and AEOI’s technical needs.

Salehi said that “technical deadlocks were removed” in recent talks with U.S.  Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz and added, “We took very good steps in issues related to enrichment and Arak reactor and managed to remove their fabricated concerns with the technical proposals that we raised, and we defended our national interests and nuclear industry which is a great achievement of the AEOI and those dear people who work in it.”

The P5+1 talks resume in Lausanne today, and Kerry’s intention is to reach  “framework agreement” by the end of March prior to negotiations for a final agreement by June 30.

Given the Obama administration’s history of making “framework” agreements” to kick the can down the road, Iran and the P5+1 might be able to come up with some ambiguous language to show they have “progressed.”

 

 

 

Rabbi Lau Hints at Israel’s Real Enemy

Friday, March 6th, 2015

There’s a Midrash (external story to the written text) that says when King Achashverosh asked Queen Esther, “Who is this, and which one is he, that has the audacity to do such a thing?” referring to the plot to kill the Jews, Queen Esther pointed her finger back at the King, and said, “A man who is a persecutor and an enemy.”

The Midrash says that an angel then pushed her hand away from the king to point it at Haman and, realizing what she had done, Esther continued, now pointing at Haman: “This evil man, Haman!”

Former Chief Rabbi Rabbi Yisrael Lau cited the above Midrash in an appearance on a Kol Yisrael radio Friday afternoon news show. He said that sometimes we can’t say out loud who the real enemy and the real persecutor actually is. You start to point your finger, and you realize that the target is too dangerous.

This is, for instance, why a Torah portion dealing with the great, evil wizard Bala’am is named after the weakling king Balak who merely hired his services.

Likewise, these days, the Rabbi continued, we point our finger at Iran, accusing it of plotting to kill all the Jews. Because we can’t afford to point our finger at the true culprit.

And then, the good Rabbi concluded with the quip: “V’hamevin yavin.” Meaning, if you get what I mean, fine, if not – ask someone…

Ambassador Ron Dermer Recaps Netanyahu’s Speech [video]

Thursday, March 5th, 2015

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/ambassador-ron-dermer-recaps-netanyahus-speech-video/2015/03/05/

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