John McCain blames the Benedict Tom Cotton letter ‘splaining our Constitution to Iran on the weather:
“It was kind of a very rapid process. Everybody was looking forward to getting out of town because of the snowstorm. I think we probably should have had more discussion about it, given the blowback that there is.”
There you have it, people. The world’s greatest deliberative body, until a few flakes fall from the sky, inducing panic — and treason.
The deadline for nuclear talks with Iran was supposed to be tomorrow, July 20. In exchange for holding off on further sanctions, President Obama swore up and down to Congress that this was a firm deadline.
Now the deadline has been extended till November 24, which means Iran blithely continues its path to a nuclear weapon. What does Iran need most? Time. What did they just get? Time.
Look, if they had a delay of a week or two, that would be one thing. It would show they were close to a deal. (Whether it would be a smart deal for us is a different issue, but not one we face today.) But a four–month extension shows that we have nothing, that we’re just spinning our wheels, while they spin their centrifuges.
November 24 gets Obama past the mid-terms and to Thanksgiving when no one will be paying attention when they announce further failure and, God forbid, another absurd extension.
As we wonder whether the U. S. will join with Iran on Iraq, we face the threshold question of whether the Pentagon will join with the State Department.
Secretary of State John Kerry says that “We’re open to discussions” on military cooperation with Iran.
But at the Defense Department, not so much. A spokesman there says, “There are no plans to consult with Iran on military actions inside Iraq. We are not planning to engage in military-to-military discussions with Iran.”
UPDATE — The White House is with the Pentagon on this one, saying there will be no military coordination with Iran. So that seems to be an, um, “red line” for the Administration.
From “How Iran, Putin and Assad Outwitted America,” David Keyes, TheDailyBeast:
“Historians will look back at the present moment with astonishment that Iran so skillfully outwitted the West. They will note the breathtaking naivete of American and European officials who let a brutal theocracy undermine Western interests throughout the Middle East. At one of Iran’s most vulnerable moments, America threw the mullahs a life-line; an ill-conceived nuclear deal coupled with a complete inability to stop Syria, Iran’s closest ally, from continuing to slaughter enmasse. …
“[Iranian foreign minister Mohamed] Zarif’s mission to Moscow quells any lingering hopes that Russia can be seduced away from Syria or Iran. Putin has made a simple calculation: Assad will protect his interests better than anyone. Russia, in turn, has made it clear that it will prop up Syria’s tyrant and their Iranian backers at almost any cost. …
“Iran, Syria and Russia appear to be the strong horses of the Middle East. Assad slaughters with impunity because he knows that no one will actually stop him. Russia knows it can get away with backing Syria and Iran, because who is ready to pay the price to stop it? …
“It is no surprise that Iran’s mullahs are gloating that they outwitted the West with the recent nuclear deal. They did. Our sincere and overwhelming desire for peace clouded a sober reading of Iran’s intentions. …
“In this Middle Eastern proxy war, it often seems that only one side is actually fighting. Russia is pouring massive sums of money and arms into Syria to prop up Assad. …”
I know we’re all enthralled by Christie’s bad motives in closing down those lanes, but the big story is Obama’s good intentions in paving this road to Hell.
Iran’s chief negotiator on the nuclear agreement, Abbas Araqchi, says that there is an informal side deal to the formal agreement between Iran and the six other powers (the U. S., Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and China), which he called a nonpaper.
The State Department says that there is no such secret agreement. I’m going with Araqchi on this one.
Araqchi seems very happy with the results of the negotiation: “No facility will be closed; enrichment will continue, and qualitative and nuclear research will be expanded. All research into a new generation of centrifuges will continue.”
I predict that this whole thing is going to blow up and be a disaster for the Obama administration in the latter half of 2014.