Monday, November 25, 2013

Obama's Iran desl-historic dsaster

Netanyahu: Geneva Agreement "a Historic Mistake"
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the Israeli Cabinet on Sunday: "What was achieved last night in Geneva is not an historic agreement; it is an historic mistake. Today the world has become a much more dangerous place because the most dangerous regime in the world has taken a significant step toward attaining the most dangerous weapon in the world. For the first time, the world's leading powers have agreed to uranium enrichment in Iran while ignoring the UN Security Council decisions that they themselves led."
    "Sanctions that required many years to put in place contain the best chance for a peaceful solution. These sanctions have been given up in exchange for cosmetic Iranian concessions that can be cancelled in weeks. This agreement and what it means endanger many countries including, of course, Israel. Israel is not bound by this agreement. The Iranian regime is committed to the destruction of Israel and Israel has the right and the obligation to defend itself, by itself, against any threat. As Prime Minister of Israel, I would like to make it clear: Israel will not allow Iran to develop a military nuclear capability."  (Prime Minister's

Greatest Danger Is that Interim Agreement Will Become Permanent - Ron Ben-Yishai
If the interim agreement with Iran turns into a permanent agreement, as Israeli officials fear, it's a bad and even dangerous agreement. The Iranians are still unwilling to completely halt the construction of the heavy water reactor at Arak, which will allow the production of plutonium in about two-three years.
    The Iranians are committed to stop enriching uranium to a 20% level and convert what they have into fuel rods or uranium oxide. Another commitment is not to increase the amount of 3.5% to 5% enriched uranium which they possess. These restrictions are in fact almost meaningless. With nearly 18,000 centrifuges used to enrich uranium, they can enrich uranium to any level they want within a short period of time. At the moment they already have more than eight tons of uranium enriched to 3.5-5%, enough for four to five atom bombs.
    The Iranians are only committing, sometime in six months, to answer questions presented by the IAEA on the efforts it has made and is still making to develop the explosive device and warhead. During this time, they can complete the development of the nuclear weapon. (Ynet News)

The Hidden Cost of the Iranian Nuclear Deal - Michael Doran
I see the Iranian nuclear deal as a deceptively pleasant way station on the road that is the American retreat from the Middle East. By contrast, President Obama believes that six months from now, this process will culminate in a final, sustainable agreement.
    On the nuclear question specifically, I don't see this as stage one. In my view, there will never be a final agreement. What the administration just initiated was, rather, a long and expensive process by which the West pays Iran to refrain from going nuclear. We are, in essence, paying Ayatollah Khamenei to negotiate with us. We just bought six months.
    What was the price? We shredded the six UN Security Council resolutions that ordered the Islamic Republic to abandon all enrichment and reprocessing activities. And we started building a global economic lobby dedicated to eroding the sanctions that we generated through a decade of very hard diplomatic work. But the price that troubles me most is the free hand that the U.S. is now giving to Iran throughout the region. And Iran will now have more money to channel to proxies such as Hizbullah.
    Six months from now, when the interim agreement expires, another payment to Ayatollah Khamenei will come due. If Obama doesn't pony up, he will have to admit then that he cut a bad deal now. The writer, a senior fellow in the Saban Center for Middle East Policy at Brookings, served as a U.S. deputy assistant secretary of defense and a senior director at the National Security Council. (Brookings Institution)

  • Saudi Prince: "The Threat Is from Persia, Not from Israel" - Jeffrey Goldberg
    Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal told me, "There's no confidence in the Obama administration doing the right thing with Iran." Alwaleed believes that Iran will pocket whatever sanctions relief it gets without committing to ending its nuclear program.
        I asked him if he thought the Arab states would actually back an Israeli strike on Iran's nuclear facilities. "Publicly, they would be against it," he said. "Privately, they would love it." "The Sunnis will love it....The Sunni Muslim is very much anti-Shiite, and very much anti-, anti-, anti-Iran."
        You're sure they loathe Iran more than they loathe Israel, I asked? "Look, Iran is a huge threat, historically speaking....The Persian empire was always against the Muslim Arab empire, especially against the Sunnis. The threat is from Persia, not from Israel."  (Bloomberg)
  • A Bad Agreement Likely to Get Worse - Mark Dubowitz and Orde Kittrie
    The interim agreement includes several Iranian commitments that, if verifiably implemented, would extend Iran's nuclear breakout time from about a month to about two months.
        It places more constraints on Iran's nuclear program than the deal that the Obama administration reportedly was prepared to sign two weeks ago. The Senate's threat to pass additional sanctions, France's objections to the initial deal, and Israel's fierce resistance to the terms of the proposed agreement seem to have played a role in providing U.S. negotiators with leverage to extract a better deal from Iran. Mr. Dubowitz is executive director of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Mr. Kittrie is a law professor at Arizona State University and a senior fellow at the foundation. (Wall Street Journal)
  • Observations:
    • The agreement signed in Geneva says Iran and six world powers will negotiate a comprehensive solution over the next six months that "would involve a mutually defined enrichment program with practical limits and transparency measures to ensure the peaceful nature of the program."
    • The offer represents a significant softening of earlier demands from the United States and even the Obama administration. During his first term, Obama offered Iran a deal that would have required Iran to import enriched nuclear fuel, but not allow Iran to make that fuel in facilities its government controlled.
        See also Israeli Experts Suggest a Glass Half Full - Mitch Ginsburg (Times of Israel)
    • Dr. Ephraim Asculai, a veteran of both the IAEA and the Israel Atomic Energy Commission, noted Sunday that the Iran accord "does not do anything to change that [breakout] time, except perhaps in a very minor way." He said the agreed-upon limitations of the interim agreement add only "a few days" onto the regime's clock, should it decide to sprint toward a bomb.
    • The former head of IDF military intelligence and current director of the Institute for National Security Studies, Amos Yadlin, told Army Radio that the value of the agreement, which he termed "neither the dream agreement nor the destruction of the Third Temple," would only be evident in six months' time. "The fall of this regime before it gets the bomb should be our objective," he said.

    Gen. Hayden: Iran Deal 'Worst of All Possible Outcomes'

    Image: Gen. Hayden: Iran Deal 'Worst of All Possible Outcomes'
    Sunday, 24 Nov 2013 11:21 AM
    By Audrey Hudson

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    Former CIA Director Gen. Michael Hayden on Sunday criticized the Obama administration's deal with Iran saying it will only delay, not derail the country's nuclear program.

    Hayden told CNN's "State of the Union" that Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry "hit the pause button, rather than delete button."

    "Practically the worst of all possible outcomes, because now what you have here is a nuclear capable state," Hayden said.

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    "I think frankly that is Iran's bottom line, so what we're negotiating on is how much time we're putting between their nuclear capability and a nuclear weapon, a nuclear reality," Hayden said.

    "And my fear is, this interim agreement, which doesn't roll back much of anything at all, becomes a permanent agreement," Hayden said.

    The six-month agreement between the U.S. and other nations requires Iran to limit its nuclear activities in exchange for some relief on sanctions.

    Hayden said the agreement contradicts the U.S. alignment with Sunnis Muslim and Israelis in the region, and that it will take "an awful lot of hand holding" to convince our allies this is the correct course of action.

    Former Secretary of State John Negroponte also appeared on CNN and said that the U.S. should not consider lifting sanctions until after all of the demands to roll back the nuclear program have been met.

    "I think what worries a number of people is that we might get salami-sliced and that the Iranians will engage in dilatory tactics and then seek some more momentary relief from sanctions," Negroponte said.

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