Jeffrey Goldberg finds himself in an interesting position, on one hand he became known as one of the media mouthpieces for President Obama, on the other hand, he clearly finds himself in an uncomfortable position regarding Iran.
As an aside, Goldberg doesn’t seem to particularly like Netanyahu. Whether it’s a personality issue or he doesn’t like how Netanyahu gets things done, it doesn’t really matter. It comes across.
But as the man who is known to have some insight (and inside info) into the President, Goldberg makes some important assertions in his latest piece that need to be heard.
The first important statement is a confirmation that at some point and in some way Obama shut down an Israeli preemptive attack against Iran’s nuclear program…
“Netanyahu, American officials believe, has come quite close [to bombing Iranian nuclear facilities], only to be shut down by Obama, and also by some of his own generals.”
So at least one rumor appears to be true.
At the same time, he is sure the Obama administration is close to signing a very bad deal…
“…I wish that the Iranian negotiators were actually negotiating on behalf of the U.S… I think the Iranians are doing an excellent job of playing a weak hand. It seems as if the American side wants this deal too much. It’s always a bad idea to walk into a car dealership and announce, “I’m going to buy this car no matter what.” I fear this is what Obama’s negotiators may have done.”
Goldberg chose to believe two impossible things before I had breakfast this morning.
The first is that he believes that Netanyahu could have lobbied Obama differently and more subtly, and not go to Congress, completely ignoring that Netanyahyu has repeatedly bent over backwards trying to appease Obama in many areas, only to be told to bend over again.
[Netanyahu should] Lobby hard for a stronger deal rather than lobby against any deal at all, and try to fix relations with the Obama administration, understanding that the loss of bipartisan support for Israel in the U.S. is a direct national-security threat to Israel.
The second impossible thing Goldberg wants to believe is that Obama would actually bomb Iran if he found out he was tricked by the Iranians (assuming of course it’s not too late)…
I still suspect, by the way, that there are two scenarios in which Obama himself might use force to stop Iran from crossing the nuclear finish line. (I might be the only person left who believes this, but I’m comfortable, for now, in my heresy.) The first is an overt move toward breakout by the Iranians. The second is the discovery of an attempt by Iran to “sneak-out” (to borrow Gary Samore’s phrase).
Because the President has an excellent track record in that area (not to mention, according to Goldberg, Obama prevented Israel from doing just that).
Yesterday, the IAEA, the UN organization sent to monitor and verify the Iranian’s nuclear development, said outright they have no clue as to what Iran is doing in two key areas (and those are just two of the unknowns they know about).
“…The agency is not in a position to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear activities in Iran and therefore conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is for peaceful activities'”
Yet in a White House briefing yesterday, when asked to comment, Press Secretary John Earnest said,
“What I’m suggesting is the international community has verified that Iran lived up — the international community has verified that Iran has lived up to commitments that they have made in the context of the plan of action.”