Today, the day after President Obama announced in the Rose Garden a “framework agreement” intended to limit the Islamic Republic of Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons, I read the Wall Street Journal account carefully but it did not help. I don’t understand it. It may just be too early for a good analysis. In the meantime several questions loom large in my mind.
1 If I don’t understand the details, do I believe in an agreement with a hostile country described by a man who promised that “you could keep your doctor” ?
2 Do I believe that this agreement is to the advantage of the United States? The question arises because it was negotiated principally by two men with a track record. The first, Pres. Obama succeeded in exchanging five terrorist generals for a single American soldiers who is a deserter according to those who were on the battlefield with him. The second, the current Secretary of State demonstrated that you could leave the Palestinian/Israeli relationship in an even worse state than you found it.
3 The President and the Secretary of State did not manage, as a part of this supposedly momentous agreement, to get three Americans held by Iran released. One of them is a former Marine. It should have been a tiny footnote to the main text. Ah, well, there is not text, just an oral argument! Frankly, in the bigger picture the freeing of three people is a small, symbolic thing. Symbols matter a lot though when you don’t have access to the hard facts. I don’t, you don’t
4 Is the mullahs’ government – that always cheated in the past – going to abstain from lying, this time. If it does not, is this agreement going to be the cause of the death of thousands of innocent Iranians (as collateral damage)? I ask because, the next administration may not have the current administration’s difficult-to-believe indulgence. It may just decide to take care once for all of a sore festering for twenty years. If an American administration does no such thing, what is the likelihood that a future (future) government of Israel will take the chance to see millions of Jews murdered? This is not gratuitous fear mongering. Two days before the announcement, an Iranian general was on TV affirming that Israel has no right to exists.
5 Do I believe that our European partners will stand firm and renew their sanctions if Iran is caught cheating? The question arises because they were salivating on all their national TV at the prospect of selling, selling anything in Iran once the sanction were lifted.
On the bright side, the lifting of some sanctions will unleash a torrent of Iranian oil on the world market. This will further depress of global oil prices. One more thorn in the foot of the gangster Putin.