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August 29, 2015 / 14 Elul, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘nuclear deal’

Royce Submits Congressional Bill to ‘Disapprove’ IranDeal

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

The chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Republican U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (CA) has submitted a bill to disapprove the nuclear deal between the U.S., world powers and Iran.

Congress has until September 17 to approve or disapprove of the agreement that was signed on July 14 under the Iran Nuclear Review Act signed in May by President Barack Obama.

The announcement means the Republican-led Congress will make an effort to pass the resolution of disapproval, H.J. Res. 64, rather than a resolution of non-binding approval.

A resolution of disapproval would prohibit the White House from lifting U.S. sanctions on Iran, probably killing the deal entirely. If the resolution passes, Obama may be expected to veto it.

Royce wrote in a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry that it was “imperative” for lawmakers to see the so-called “side deals” being negotiated between the Islamic Republic and the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency while the agreement is being debated in Congress.

“While this may not be typical IAEA practice, there is nothing typical about the Iranian threat or this nuclear agreement,” he wrote. “Reviewing these side agreements is critical to Congress understanding whether Iran intends to pass that test… It is clear to me that this issue deserves more scrutiny by the Committee. Indeed, all Members of Congress should have access to the separate arrangements negotiated between Iran and the IAEA,” he continued.

“The ‘separate arrangement’ agreed to between the IAEA and Iran regarding inspection of the facilities at Parchin will almost certainly be regarded by Tehran as a precedent for IAEA access to future suspicious sites in Iran.

“I have little doubt that ‘side deals’ of today will become central to the agreement’s verification provisions tomorrow.

“These ‘separate arrangements’ have the potential to seriously weaken our ability to verify the agreement as a whole.”

The White House called the ‘arrangements’ between the IAEA and states standard and confidential. However, IAEA director-general Yukiya Amano is slated to present a closed-door briefing to members of the U.S. Senate on Wednesday (Aug. 5.)

Longtime former IAEA deputy director Dr. Olli Heinonen, who headed the agency’s arms inspections , currently of Harvard’s Belfer Center, expressed his opposition to the nuclear agreement Tuesday in a news briefing at the National Press Club in Washington DC.

Obama Warns US Jews ‘Israel Will Bear the Brunt’ If Nuke Deal Nixed

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

President Barack Obama warned American Jewish leaders Tuesday if the U.S. nuclear deal with Iran is shot down, Israel eventually will pay the price in rocket fire on Tel Aviv.

Obama and Vice President Joe Biden met in the White House Cabinet Room with 20 Jewish leaders several hours after an Internet address to North American Jewish leaders by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. The Israeli leader followed his speech with a question-and-answer session drawn from some 2,000 pre-submitted questions from the 10,000 who had registered to participate in the webcast, sponsored by the Jewish Federations and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.

During the two-hour meeting with Jewish leaders from across the religious and political spectrum that followed Netanyahu’s plea for American Jews to fight the deal, Obama tried to debunk the prime minister’s arguments.

Sources at the meeting said Obama said a discussion focused on “personal attacks” – rather than the “merits of the deal” – could threaten the unity of the American Jewish community and also the strength of the U.S.-Israel relationship.

But Netanyahu specifically said in his own address – emphasized, in fact – that he was not making a personal attack. “A huge majority of Israelis oppose the deal,” he said. “So this is not a partisan issue in Israel. It shouldn’t be a partisan issue in the United States either.

“Nor is it a personal issue. This isn’t about me. And it’s not about President Obama. It’s about the deal. I’m asking you to rise above partisan politics as we in Israel have risen above it. Judge the deal on its substance and on its substance alone. The more people know about the deal, the more they oppose it,” Netanyahu said pointedly.

Obama also said that he truly believes that if the deal will be rejected by Congress, the ultimate result will be a military strike. “But the results of such a strike won’t be war with Iran,” the president allegedly said.

Iran isn’t going to aim its weapons at the United States, pit its annual budget of $15 billion against the U.S. military and the American budget of $600 billion, he said. Obama went on to describe instead a terror scenario similar to that which awaits Israel and the U.S. as described by Netanyahu, given the billions of dollars to be infused into the Iranian economy as a result of the soon-to-be lifted sanctions from the deal.

American and Israeli targets will be attacked by armed terrorist groups on Israel’s borders, and Iranian proxies who will ram aircraft carriers, the president allegedly said. “They will fight this asymmetrically. That means more support for terrorism, more Hezbollah rockets falling on Tel Aviv.

“I can assure that Israel will bear the brunt of the asymmetrical response that Iran will have to a military strike on its nuclear facilities.”

In his speech, Netanyahu was clear and to the point on this: “There’s one claim that is the most outrageous – that those who oppose this deal want war. That’s utterly false. We in Israel don’t want war. We want peace. Because it’s we who are on the front lines.

“We face Iran’s terror on three borders. We face tens of thousands of Iranian rockets aimed at all our cities. We face Iran, whose regime repeatedly calls for the destruction of the Jewish State.

“We face Iran whose terrorist proxies try to kill Jews every day.

“Israelis are going to be the ones who pay the highest price if there’s war and if Iran gets the bomb.

“I oppose this deal because I want to prevent war, and this deal will bring war. It will spark a nuclear arms race in the region and it would feed Iran’s terrorism and aggression. That would make war, perhaps the most horrific war of all, far more likely.

Chuck Schumer Explodes as 60 Jewish leaders Look On

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

(JNi.media) Sen. Charles Schumer was meeting with some 60 Jewish American leaders in Washington DC last week, when he couldn’t take the pressure any more, and by pressure we mean the voices of Jews everywhere telling him to vote with the Republicans, against President Obama’s Iran nuclear deal.

One source told The NY Post that Schumer, who is about as even tempered as they come most days, “exploded” in the meeting.

On his Monday press conference in his Midtown office, which included his distant cousin, comic actress Amy Schumer, the Senator said he would discuss gun control, or anything else, really, just not how he would vote on the Iran nuclear deal.

“This is such an important decision that I will not let pressure, politics or party influence [me],” Schumer said.

Schumer has received an estimated 10,000 phone calls to his office over the past two weeks, most of them from opponents of the Iran agreement.

Iran Openly Refuses UN IAEA Inspectors Access to Military Sites

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

The Iranian security adviser to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei explained in a broadcast interview last week that United Nations nuclear inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency would not be given access to Tehran’s sensitive military nuclear sites.

Ali Akbar Velayati made the statement in a broadcast interview with Aljazeera on July 31, 2015 (clip# 5026) that was monitored and translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

“First, allow me to emphasize that the issue of the missiles and of Iran’s defensive capabilities were not part of the negotiations to begin with,” Velayati said.

“No matter what pressure is exerted, Iran never has negotiated and never will negotiate with others – America, Europe, or any other country – about the nature and quality of missiles it should manufacture or possess, or about the defensive military equipment that it needs. This is out of the question.

“We in Iran will independently determine what military equipment we need in order to defend our land, the regime of the Islamic Republic, the Iranian people, and the interest of our country.

“Therefore, we will not hesitate to obtain these weapons, with the exception of nuclear weapons or WMD, such as chemical weapons, which are internationally prohibited.

“Therefore, the missile issue is not a part of the nuclear agreement with the P5+1.

“Any different statement about this is baseless.

Regardless of how the P5+1 countries interpret the nuclear agreement, their entry into our military sites is absolutely forbidden. The entry of any foreigner, including IAEA inspectors or any other inspector, to the sensitive military sites of the Islamic Republic is forbidden, no matter what,” Velayati stated firmly. (italics added)

The interviewer asked: “That’s final?”

“Yes,” Velayati replied. “Final.”

He went on to say, “Israel does not dare to attack Iran. The moment it initiates such a thing, important Israeli cities will be razed to the ground.

“The U.S. accuses us of supporting terrorism and terrorists in the region. We ask the Americans: ‘Who are those terrorists?’ Their answer boils down to Hezbollah.

“Is Lebanese Hezbollah a terrorist party? We are proud of Hezbollah. It defends its existence and the existence of the Muslims, the Arabs and the Lebanese. Hezbollah was the first to deal Israel a real defeat.

“We are proud to be supporting Hezbollah, while America deems this support to constitute support of terrorism.

“First of all, we should sit down and define what terrorism is and who is a terrorist. We believe that if you defend your land you are not a terrorist.

“We are committed to the Vienna agreement,” he reiterated.

“How do you view the recent Security Council resolution?” asked the interviewer.

“We are not necessarily required to accept everything decided by the Security Council,” replied Velayati. “Let me give you an example that is important to us and to you.

“The Security Council might make resolutions in favor of Israel. We would not accept or recognize these resolutions. This is what the Arab and Islamic countries would do. They would not recognize these resolutions.

“There were quite a few UN Security Council resolutions which ran counter to the interests of some countries that did not recognize them.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran will not succumb to any international resolution that contradicts our strategic interests and our sovereignty.

“However, with regard to the Vienna agreement, if it wins the support of the legal authorities in Iran, Iran will be completely committed to it.”

Iran Banks on End to Sanctions, Will Raise Oil Production to 1M bpd

Sunday, August 2nd, 2015

Iran is already banking on the passage of the nuclear deal it signed with the U.S. and world powers last month in Vienna. Its government plans to raise its output of oil to one million barrels per day within months after sanctions are lifted, according to Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh.

In remarks broadcast on Sunday, Zanganeh said, “We are already doing the marketing, and within a day after the lifting of sanctions, we will raise [production] by 500,000 barrels per day.” Within months, he said, production would double to one million bpd.

Much of the current oil production in the Middle East is flowing from Iraqi Kurdistan through Turkey into Europe and elsewhere, although some of the oil still comes from Iran. There may soon be competition from another quarter, however.

Recently the executive director of Russia’s Union of Gas and Oil Industrialists told RIA Novosti, however, that as soon as the situation in Syria is stabilized, Russian oil and gas companies are likely to revive their contracts with that government.

Gissa Guchetl told the newspaper the companies held contracts worth a total of $1.6 billion, that froze their work because of the civil war that has since destroyed that country.

Nevertheless, he said, “If military actions cease and the situation becomes stable … [they] will be ready to renew their activity within a short period of time.” A week ago Guchetl met in Damascus over the issue with Syrian Prime Minister Wael Nadr Halqi and Petroleum and Mineral Resources Minister Suleiman Abbas.

The two Syrians told Guchetl they are interested in Russian companies supplying crude and other oil products to Syria, and in cooperation with Chinese firms to increase oil exploration in Syrian fields that are safe from “rebel attacks.”

Iranian FM on Regional Tour to ‘Sell’ Nuclear Deal

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif set out on a three-stop tour of the region Sunday to begin an effort to “sell” the P5+1 nuclear deal to skeptical Arab nations in the Middle East.

A number of countries in addition to Israel harbor grave doubts about Iran’s motivations for making the deal, let alone its ability to stick to the terms of the agreement. Among those who view the deal with extreme caution are Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan.

Bahrain is also giving the accord a second look, but finds itself in a difficult position. Host to the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, the country can hardly say it lacks for protection from Iranian aggression – even nuclear aggression.

That didn’t stop Iran from providing covert assistance and strong encouragement to a Shi’ite-led opposition movement within Bahrain during the Arab Spring. Nor has it apparently stopped Iran from sponsoring nascent terror operations in the country.

A smuggling ring was recently caught trying to bring weapons, ammunition and explosives into the kingdom; authorities told reporters that two of the suspects caught in the sting were Bahraini nationals who received military training in Iran, and who confessed to receiving the contraband from “Iranian handlers.”

Nevertheless, in a speech earlier this month, Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei included Bahrain in the list of “regional friends” Iran would continue to support despite its nuclear deal, along with Yemen, Syria, Iraq and “the oppressed Palestinian nation.”

But Bahrain was not Zarif’s itinerary: on Saturday, Manama announced it was recalling its ambassador to Iran for consultations in the wake of “continued hostile statements made by Iranian officials toward Bahrain,” according to the official Bahrain News Agency.

Zarif began his tour with a visit to Kuwait, where he was greeted by Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al Hamad Al Sabah in a red-carpet welcome at the airport. Within hours Zarif was in talks with Kuwait’s head of state, emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Sabah.

The Iranian diplomat is slated to travel to Qatar and then to Iraq, where he will brief the heads of state in both countries – as he has in Kuwait – on the details of the nuclear deal Iran signed with the U.S.-led delegation of world powers. According to Iranian state-run media, Zarif will also discuss ways to “improve cooperation and fight terrorism” as well.

In the case of Qatar, Iran shares with Doha control over a huge underwater natural gas field, the development of which may come up for discussion due to the imminent lifting of sanctions as part of the deal that was signed.

With regard to Baghdad, Iran months ago sent its elite Revolutionary Guard Corps and other troops to battle Da’esh (ISIS) terrorists which currently control one-third of that country. Most of the Iraqi territory that is not controlled by Da’esh at this point is controlled by Iran.

“Iran and the regional countries are facing common threats that should be confronted through mutual cooperation,” Zarif said, according to the Iranian FARS news agency.

It Was Good to See Sanity in America Last Night

Thursday, July 23rd, 2015

You can’t deny that there’s something inexplicably charismatic and compelling about the way President Obama speaks that makes you want to believe his arguments, even as they go against all logic and everything you know is true.

Obama could argue the sky is green and we live on Mars and he looks forward to the vigorous debate on the subject, and you’d want to believe him–if he was saying it in front of you.

Perhaps it’s his smile and intonations, maybe its his choice of words and body language, or his reality defying messages of hope and belief. It’s like Count Dracula’s hypnotism, you find yourself drawn into Obama’s blah blah blah.

I too have watched him speak about his nuclear deal, and I find myself just wanting to believe him…

…until I read the transcript and see everything Obama ignored, left out, wrongly disparaged, factually manipulated, spun, straw-manned and incorrectly argued.

But you finally understand how America voted for Obama’s TV presence, despite everything.

Last night I watched the Stop Iran Rally as dozens of speakers got up, each with varying degrees of eloquence (or lack of eloquence) attacking the Iran deal using history, logic and facts, as ten thousand people rallied in Times Square.

It was good to see and hear sanity in America. It was good to see there are still Americans who aren’t bamboozled and hypnotized, and are seemingly immune to Obama’s gaze and silver tongue.

But I was also bothered and uncomfortable that this appeared to have been a predominantly Jewish-led event. A pro-Israel event.

It should not have been, but it was very much directed at Senator Charles Schumer and other Jewish Democratic Congressmen, who perhaps hold the keys to stopping this bad deal, so the speakers were trying to appeal to their greater Jewish values.

The truth is, the Iran nuclear deal is a far greater threat to America – “the Great Satan,” as Iran calls it –  than to Israel.

This deal also undermines everything the United States has fought for in the Middle East all these years, in the name of “diplomacy”.

This deal rewards the same Iranian terrorist state that provided material support to Al Qaida for 9/11, the Iran that undermined American efforts to rehabilitate Iraq, the Iran that cheated and lied their way to 2 months away from a nuclear weapon (despite Obama’s initial denials), the Iran that apparently still maintains secret nuclear weapons testing facilities in Parchin and other locations, and are, of course, still holding American citizens hostage, just to touch the tip of the iceberg.

While it was good to finally voices of sanity in America coming together and speaking out, I also fear there is too much money coming in from removing the sanctions, that the threats will be pushed under the rug for the profit and short term gains.

And when a new Farsi-speaking Middle East emerges, the US and the world will shrug their shoulders, bunker down, and turn to Israel to find new and innovative ways to defend themselves from Iran’s expanded global terror network pumped up on nuclear steroids.

They’ll ask themselves, as they awaken from their stupor, how did we get here and what do we do now?

And by then it will be too late.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/muqata/it-was-good-to-see-sanity-in-america-last-night/2015/07/23/

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