Secretary of State John Kerry has some very strong words for Iran in an op-ed he recently wrote for the Washington Post.
We entered into this negotiating process because we believed it had a real chance to succeed.
It still does, but time is running short.
If Iran is able to make these choices, there will be positive outcomes for the Iranian people and for their economy. Iran will be able to use its significant scientific know-how for international civil nuclear cooperation. Businesses could return to Iran, bringing much needed investment, jobs and many additional goods and services. Iran could have greater access to the international financial system. The result would be an Iranian economy that begins to grow at a significant and sustainable pace, boosting the standard of living among the Iranian population. If Iran is not ready to do so, international sanctions will tighten and Iran’s isolation will deepen.
Our negotiators will be working constantly in Vienna between now and July 20. There may be pressure to put more time on the clock. But no extension is possible unless all sides agree, and the United States and our partners will not consent to an extension merely to drag out negotiations. Iran must show a genuine willingness to respond to the international community’s legitimate concerns in the time that remains.
Does this remind anyone of the problem we had with Iraq under the Clinton and Bush administrations? One of the reasons President George W. Bush gave for going to war was the fact that Iraq had missed, avoided, lied about or just pretended that the 17 odd United Nations resolutions that had been passed, instructing them to come clean about WMD’s didn’t exist. Now we have President Obama and Secretary Kerry in perpetual negotiations with Iran, constantly alternating between threats and exhortations about Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
There are a couple of major problems here… and everyone knows it.
First, we have no credibility.
The National Journal is reporting today that Secretary Kerry delivered an ultimatum to Russia five days ago.
(Paraphrasing) “If you don’t back off of Ukraine in the next few HOURS … there is going to be trouble.”
Now, five days later, what has changed? NOTHING. Russia called his bluff and now we look even weaker. Which might not be a big deal for the perpetually dithering and spineless Obama administration… but it’s a very big deal for Ukraine, Georgia, Poland, Estonia and several other terrified Eastern European allies of ours.
Here’s what the National Journal is saying…
Last week, John Kerry said that Russia needed to pull back in Ukraine in a matter of “hours, literally.”
But more than 100 hours later, Russia has done no such thing.
The secretary of State delivered the order to de-escalate within hours, paired with a warning of future U.S. action, on Thursday in Paris, after a meeting with France’s foreign minister. “We are in full agreement that it is critical for Russia to show in the next hours, literally, that they are moving to help disarm the separatists, to encourage them to disarm, to call on them to lay down their weapons and begin to become part of a legitimate political process,” he said.
In eastern Ukraine, the country’s military has been locked in a bloody battle with pro-Russian separatists, believed to be armed and funded by the Kremlin, for several months. The fighting continued well into the weekend, many hours after Kerry’s statement.
Several months ago Russia lied about their intentions and their part in the violence on the Crimean peninsula. It wasn’t until they’d consolidated power that Russia admitted their soldiers had taken Crimea. Now, we see a similar drama playing out in eastern Ukraine, and once again the Obama administration is proving impotent to play any part in the story.
Russia has played a large part in our loss of credibility, and not just in dealing with Ukraine and Eastern Europe.
Do you remember the “red line” that President Obama drew in Syria?
Yep, the rest of the world remembers too.
What happened after Syria’s dictator Bashar Assad “crossed” the line? NOTHING. Meanwhile, Russia came out of the Syria red line fiasco looking like the voice of reason for saying, “Let’s move carefully. The rebels have used chemical weapons too. The rebels look like terrorists… hey, those rebels are al Qaeda.” Then we looked like the schmucks who were teaming up with Al Qaeda in Syria while fighting them everywhere else!
The Second major problem is that we have no options in Iran.
(Which I completely disagree with. War in Iran is not the answer.)
So we’ve exhausted all of our options, other than war, and we are still trying to talk tough with Iran? Ridiculous.
Even war is out of the question. Why? Because of Al Qaeda’s (and others) influence in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
If we attack Iran and destabilize the government, it would simply create another opportunity for all of these terrorist organizations to flourish. And we can’t allow that.
The truth is we NEED a stable Iran to fend off most of these terrorist groups.
Al Qaeda and ISIS and the Taliban hate Iranian Muslims. In fact, most of the victims of ISIS in Iraq are Shia Muslims. Iran is predominantly Shia and ISIS, and Al Qaeda would be happy to see every Shia Muslim dead.
So right now… Iran and the USA have a common enemy in ISIS and Al Qaeda. Ironic… isn’t it?
Sadly, new analysis shows that the USA (and the Obama administration in particular) created the ISIS problem in Iraq because we supported them in Syria first.
Talk about shooting yourself in the foot.
Folks, we are backed into a corner here… and it’s all because of the choices of the Bush and Obama administrations. (Yes, Bush bears some responsibility – even though Obama is most at fault.) We must reevaluate our foreign policy decisions because they are all too often working against us. Russia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Iran are all proof of that…
Listen folks, I hope you aren’t expecting anyone from the Obama administration to apologize for their uselessness… especially not Kerry or the President himself.