Photo Credit: (Image source: CNN video screenshot)

{Originally posted to the Gatestone Institute website}

If someone had asked you a year ago what would be the most efficient way to cause a major war in the Middle East, you might well have said: Giving the mullahs in Iran the opportunity to get advanced conventional weapons, ICBMs, nuclear weapons and tens of billion of dollars to fund terrorist organizations and destabilize other countries in the region. You might have argued that a regime that does not hesitate to attack targets in Washington or Berlin might not be the most prudent one to shower with gigantic quantities of money and the deadliest weapons.


If one knows anything about the regime in Iran, it is difficult to understand how U.S. President Barack Obama’s agreement with Iran could create anything other than chaos and war in the Middle East.

The content of the Iran nuclear agreement creates the perfect conditions for a major war in the Middle East — one that could spread and start a major regional conflict.

Despite what President Obama likes to say, it is not true that the agreement “permanently prohibits Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon” or “cuts off all of Iran’s pathways to a bomb”. The agreement means that the U.S. has accepted that after 15 years, or sooner, Iran may build as many bombs as it likes.

The Islamic Republic of Iran, since its founding in 1979, has had an ideology that seeks to “export the Islamic revolution.” The phrase is not just a catchword for the mullahs. They have done it in practice, if necessary by force. After coming to power in 1979, the leader of the revolution, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, called on the Shi’ite Muslims in Iraq to revolt and establish an Islamic republic. The mullahs’ effort to export the Islamic revolution to Iraq was one of the causes of the Iran-Iraq War, which lasted eight years and resulted in possibly a million deaths. Despite intense resistance from Arab countries, Khomeini’s Islamic revolution has been successfully exported to Lebanon, Gaza, Yemen, Syria and Iraq.

Iran is not a country busy trying to preserve its own sovereignty. Iran, instead, undermines other countries’ sovereignty. In the case of Israel’s, the regime in Iran is threatening the nation’s entire existence. Even more astonishing is that the president of the United States gets peevish — and threatens American Jews — when Israel’s prime minister reminds the public of that.

The regime in Iran has carried out terror attacks against Americans in Lebanon[1] and in European cities. A German court has stated that Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, organized terrorist attacks in Germany. Several times, Iranian agents have been arrested in Europe when they were attempting to organize terror attacks.

Iran was behind the World Trade center attacks.

As late as 2011, Iran planned to assassinate the Saudi ambassador and attack the Israeli and Saudi embassies in Washington.

Iranian forces, both directly and through Hezbollah proxies, have been responsible for over 1,000 American military fatalities over the last decade and a half. Iran has continuously backed the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah, providing it with money, training, and weapons.

Iran’s regime is, contrary to rumors, extremely pragmatic: it sees that no matter what it does, its survival is not threatened even slightly. Iran’s regime sees — as does everyone else – that even the worst transgressions are, on the contrary, rewarded.

The regime is simply following Khomeini’s original ideology to “export the revolution” and to fight against Western influence, which he called “Westoxification.”

Iran’s regime has always done what it says it will do. Experience shows that when the mullahs in Iran say “Death to America,” they mean it with actual and real consequences. When the mullahs first shouted “Death to America,” a slogan that started in 1978-1979 in response to American support for the Shah, they followed that up by having the Iranian-backed Hezbollah kill 241 American soldiers in Beirut on October 23, 1983. Iran then continued to ensure that Americans died in Iraq and Afghanistan during the Iraq- and Afghanistan wars.

In the same vein, when the Iranian regime shouts “Death to Israel,” it sends weapons and resources to Hamas and Hezbollah, while organizing a conference for the world’s anti-Semites who deny that the Holocaust happened.

This is the Iranian regime with which the current U.S. administration would like seal a deal, under which Iran will, after 10-15 years — or sooner — be legitimately able to enrich sufficient quantities of uranium to produce many nuclear weapons.

For each of the 36 years the Iranian regime has been in power, despite strong resistance from Arab countries, Turkey, Israel and the United States, its influence and ambitions have increased. There is no reason to think that with an infusion of $150 billion, the regime in Tehran will not be even more aggressive and proceed to build its nuclear bomb.

The regime in Iran has demonstrated no plans to become less militant, create a democracy, or even to release the American hostages it continues to hold on trumped-up charges in unspeakable Iranian prisons.

Part of the regime’s triumph even seems to consist in humiliating the United States as exhaustively as it can.

The P5+1 (China, France, Russia, the UK, and the US; plus Germany) have agreed that Iran can buy conventional weapons after five years, and ICBMs after eight years. But why would any civilized nation allow a country that arms terrorist groups such as Hezbollah and Hamas to buy advanced conventional weapons? They will simply be passed on to Hamas and Hezbollah. Iran does not even deny that it supports Hamas and Hezbollah.

Iran already has missiles that can reach Israel and parts of Europe. Iran already has supplied missiles, such as the Fajr 5, to Hezbollah. Why would anyone allow a country that gives missiles to terrorists to get hold of ICBMs that can be fired from one continent to another?

It is also Iran’s official government policy that Israel should be destroyed. Why does the U.S. wish to allow a regime that wants to destroy America’s closest ally in the Middle East to get more advanced conventional — and later, nuclear — weapons?

If you listen to the mullahs in Tehran, Americans and Israelis are the targets. Therefore, these conventional weapons will be directed against the Americans and Israelis, wherever they are.

That the mullahs, thanks to this deal, will get $150 billion is not rational. When a country or organization supports terrorism, you freeze its assets. Iran continues openly to support terrorism; this deal gives Iran access to $150 billion dollars to support more terrorism.

Under the agreement, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) can inspect only Iran’s declared nuclear facilities — and that only with a 24-day delay, in addition to having to disclose to the Iranians what evidence has caused the site to be inspected.

The IAEA, however, even at its best, has never found anything. Iran’s secret nuclear program was discovered by an Iranian opposition group, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), in 2002. There is nothing that says Iran will not have more secret nuclear programs unavailable to the IAEA.

The entire agreement is based on these mullahs showing goodwill towards the West, which they no doubt see as a threat that could lure their people away from the righteous course of Islamism. President Obama’s approach seems to be based on the hope that one of the most fanatical regimes in the world will suddenly become honest and peaceful — that the same regime that shouts “Death to America” will actually present all its military installations and secrets to its archenemy, the United States, through the good offices of the IAEA.

Let us not ask President Obama to care about all those wrongly imprisoned, tortured and hanged in Iran every year. Let us not ask President Obama to care about Iranians who would like the same democracy and the freedom they begged him for in 2009. President Obama needs only to maintain peace and stability in the Middle East. But allowing these mullahs to get advanced conventional weapons in five years, ICBMs in eight years, and nuclear weapons in 15 years — or sooner — is to create the conditions for a larger regional conflict that, in this era of globalization, will surely spread to the West.

If this agreement were about peace, why do the Iranians need more weapons? If Iran wants peace, why don’t they scrap their missile program and stop supporting terrorist organizations that want to destroy Israel? If Iran wants peace, why does it want weapons that can reach other continents? Which country is threatening Iran’s sovereignty today that makes Iran want more advanced weapons?

If anyone has ICBMs and says “Death to America”, what do you think he will do with those ICBMs?

There are those who compare the Iran deal to the Munich Agreement of 1938. The Iran deal is much worse. Hitler duped Chamberlain and presented himself as a man of peace. No one has duped President Obama. The mullahs openly say “Death to America” and “Death to Israel,” and have backed up their words with actions.

It was the Iranians who helpfully exposed inconsistencies in the nuclear deal, which the U.S. government had presumably hoped to hide from Americans, such as two side-deals Iran has with the IAEA.[2]

Why would an American president do this? Does he not know at whom the Iranians will point their ICBMs?

This deal, combined with the expansionist policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran, can only lead directly to the biggest war of the 21st-century — Obama’s War, even if he is not in office any more. The mullahs will not start loving Israel. The Saudis, Turks, Egyptians and Emiratis are not just going to sit and watch Iran get nuclear weapons. No Arab country wants to be the next Syria, Lebanon, Yemen or Iraq, and Israelis have no desire to be, as threatened, wiped off the map.

The alternative is to walk away from the deal. Instead of a major war becoming the only scenario, the worst-case scenario would become a limited bombing campaign now to prevent the Iranian regime from obtaining nuclear weapons.

Even if the results lasted, as critics charge, “only” two or three years, at least Iran — and global onlookers — would understand that there are real consequences for rogue behavior; and that there could always be further rounds later, if needed.

At the very least, massive damage to select nuclear facilities would not be seen as a reward. In the worst-case scenario, walking away from the deal still leaves the world in a position of deterrence that offers it better choices before Iran becomes nuclear, not after.

Even no deal with Iran leads to a more peaceful and stable Middle East than President Obama’s bad deal.

[1] In 1983, a U.S. Marines barracks was attacked by terrorists from Hezbollah, who were backed, supported, and directed by Iran.

[2] A Persian-language statement that described the original agreement with Obama had a number of inconsistencies with the English version, some of which go completely against the agreement itself.



  1. So shortsighted. If Israel wants a war in Iran right this second, go ahead. No one is stopping you. Meanwhile, why don't you let the grownups be grownups and make the hard decisions. Decisions that recognize that even if funding and conventional weapon access increases (this increase will not be enormous in any case, percentage-wise), the only thing that could make Iran a TRUE danger to Israel (foremost) and the west (secondmost) is access to an atomic weapon.

    It's obvious that the author, and other right wingers in Israel, have been trying to provoke a war between Iran and NATO for decades, and are peeved that their machinations haven't resulted in the heinously terrible ground war they were hoping for. Again, no one is stopping Israel from bombing Iran. Besides the intelligent people in its own government.

    And despite your blatant fearmongering, which is pretty disgusting I must say, "Death to America" actually IS just words, because Iran is a relatively weaki regional power compared to the US. And no amount of breathless fearmongering will change that. The only thing that COULD change that is a nuclear weapon. Thus the deal, and thus you being wrong. Check out who supports the deal: anyone who is anyone in the international atomic inspection community.

    Long story short, you are wrong and perhaps you never even meant to be right but only meant to deceive. Either way.

  2. Moreover, the second ANY ICBM is launched towards ANY western country (or Israel), the bombing campaign WILL begin, and it will be unmerciful. There's no rush. Until then (I'll tell you a secret, there is no "then"), engagement and diplomacy is the correct response. Israeli as a country has PTSD and sees Arab/Persian dangers everywhere. You're too close to the conflicts in the region and it makes you blind. Try to take a look fromt he US perspective, and you may actually understand what I'm trying to explain to you.

  3. Not to worry on Israel’s account. Israel has long had 80 or more nuclear weapons of its own. It has a robust tripartite deterrent including nuclear weapons on submarines. Israel made a surprise air attack on Iraq’s nuclear reactor in 1981, destroying it. Under the Begin Doctrine, future Israeli governments have a self- assumed right to attack other states it believes are developing nuclear weapons, calling such attacks “counter proliferation preventive strikes. SInce then, it also attacked and destroyed Syria's reactor in 2007. The Israel Lobby in Washington, D.C. is one of the wealthiest and most powerful, supporting favorable U.S. Senators, Representatives and candidates with $10s of millions of dollars. The U.S. Congress will obstruct and delay lifting of sanctions. And Israel can attack it whenever it feels necessary. Resulting hostility will keep U.S. forces fighting near Israel in the Middle East for the foreseeable future.

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