Get PJ Media on your Apple

The PJ Tatler

by
Bridget Johnson

Bio

March 2, 2014 - 2:52 pm

WASHINGTON — The first Obama administration official to speak before this year’s American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference in Washington received a muted reception Sunday night as he tried to convince the crowd that Iran will hardly reap any benefit from its sanctions relief.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said the sanctions relief included in the six-month interim nuclear agreement is only “a drop in the bucket” and simply designed to give Iran “a small taste of how things would improve” financially if the Islamic Republic gave up its nuclear program.

Of the countries now streaming toward Tehran to ink business deals in the country, Lew characterized it as a mirage.

“Even though I’ve said this before, it bears repeating: Iran is not open for business,” he said. “The moment those talks turn into improper deals we will respond with speed and force.”

Lew, an Orthodox Jew, told the crowd “no one grew up with a deeper appreciation for Israel than I did.”

Still, the huge AIPAC crowd — more than 14,000 people registered, and at times parts of the Washington Convention Center were at maximum capacity — mostly just listened politely. Some didn’t applaud when he was introduced, and many didn’t react at the applause lines built into the speech stressing how tough the administration was being on Iran.

Of those who said “sanctions would never work,” Lew said proudly, “we proved exactly the opposite.”

He said that the agreement was forged “without fear that in the meantime Iran would advance its nuclear program” and said “key elements have been rolled back” of the program already.

“While all options must remain on the table … we reserve force as a last option,” Lew added.

Just a couple of hours before Lew spoke, House Foreign Affairs Committee Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) told an AIPAC audience that he didn’t expect Iran to comply and did not agree with the sanctions rollback. “It’s the same regime and we need to know that before we can deal with them effectively,” Engel said.

Lew told the plenary audience that “if these talks fail, we will be the first to seek even tougher sanctions.”

If Iran doesn’t follow through on its commitments, “the suspended sanctions will snap right back into place,” he added.

Congressional leaders including Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), who addresses the conference Tuesday morning, have vociferously disputed this rubber-band assertion of the administration.

“The bottom line is promises are not enough; Iran must meet its obligations,” Lew continued, adding they’re not looking for “trust but verify” but “this is a case of verify everything.”

Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to speak Monday. When incoming AIPAC president Bob Cohen told the crowd what a friend Kerry is to Israel, the applause was as slight as it was for Lew.

More from AIPAC: 

Dem Foreign Affairs Leader Wary of How Administration Will Define a Good Deal with Iran

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
Lew, an Orthodox Jew, told the crowd “no one grew up with a deeper appreciation for Israel than I did.”

Apparently he got over it.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
Is there anything that comes out of the Obama administration that is not a self-serving lie? The muslims are happy because Obama is going to give them another bomb. The crony capitalists are happy because they can get their blood money and suck up so maybe the fanatics in Tehran won't have them killed. The Europeans are happy because, well, because they are just stupid.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
Lew and Bud on the road to Tehran.

In the administration that is not to be believed, the Abott and Costello routine is pure farce.

Kerry most recently said that Russia is merely doing exercises in Crimea.

Sorry. Tehran has announced it will do exactly what Syria, China and Russia did. Flex their muscles at our idiot weaklings.

And...this "6 month" agreement isn't going to snap back to anything. It will extend and extend and extend.

The leftist/small c communist gambit of getting the camel's nose under the tent...and NEVER going backward, but incrementally inching and inching and inching more toward the ultimate goal.

The leftist/small c communist goals for Israel and America are very ugly.

Very, very ugly. Wake up to the reality of treason.

Build the gallows.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (17)
All Comments   (17)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
I've got a great idea. We here in Israel have a real jerk as our secretary of the treasury; he's the son of a leftist politician, come straight from the MSM bubble, a true demagogue. I suggest a straight trade with the US, Lew for Lapid. It would improve both administrations.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
If they aren't important then why bother? It certainly embolden them to a lot of very wild statements.

Pairing that with the administrations statements on the peace process, I wonder how seriously we can take their statements on Iran?
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
Some sanctions for sure, Yet the same laws are allowing companies to support them.
"Multiple companies currently exploring new business ventures in Iran are also cashing in on highly lucrative contracts with the U.S. Defense Department, raising questions about whether their dealings with Iran could run afoul of U.S. law" http://freebeacon.com/pentagon-contractors-exploring-business-with-iran/
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
Lew, an Orthodox Jew, told the crowd “no one grew up with a deeper appreciation for Israel than I did.”

Apparently he got over it.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
Oh, I think he really believes it. Remember, Danny Kurtzer, one of Baker's boys, was dean of Yeshiva College for two years before he decided that the Middle East was easier to deal with than us kids. (I owe him a real debt of gratitude for getting me through my first two years of college, BTW.)

Some people just really believe that this way actually helps, strange as it may seem to those of thus in the real world. Kerry, on the other hand, is a proven traitor, and we know how Obama was brought up.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
'Lew, an Orthodox Jew, told the crowd “no one grew up with a deeper appreciation for Israel than I did.”'

Thanks, Jack, for giving us an example of "smarmy" for the 21st century.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
If Israel actually trusts anything this "President" or any of his minions say, they get everything they deserve. Obamism and his entire Marxist regime, hate Israel as much as anyone does. They just don't say it. You can tell by their actions though.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
Lew the Jew ; Judas goat with a kippa.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Obama administration has demonstrated that its word is worthless. Lew has been caught himself in multiple brazen falsehoods already in his tenure.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment

Imagine a Husband who allows his enemy, an imposter, to sleep in the bed of his wife...
The imposter, naturally, has nothing but added contempt for this weak, feckless man and has no doubt that in a short matter of time the husband will pack his bags and leave the house.
Meanwhile, the neighbors look upon this spineless husband with incredulity and disdain, wondering if this weak man really is the husband or perhaps an interloper himself!
The above scenario illustrates the dynamic underlying the conflict that the Husband, Israel, has been afflicted with for the last 65 years since modern Jewish Statehood and the incomprehensible refusal of their government to declare and exercise control and possession of their G-d given Bride, Temple Mount.
The solution to the woes of the Husband are obvious to anyone who has not been deceived by the false distractions, excuses, and accusations of the enemy and the neighbors, those being the issues regarding the Palestinian Arabs.
Only when the Husband stands up, first declaring himself to be the rightful and sole Husband of this Bride and then begins taking steps to remove the imposter from the bedroom will the imposter and the neighbors begin to finally respect the Husband and take seriously his marital relationship with his Bride.
This is the natural solution to the conflict and the key to the long term security and viability of the Jewish State.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
And what would we do with it? Have everybody go traipsing all of over the site of the Temple, an act which is severe sacrilege in Judaism? (Those religious Jews who go up there stay on the edges.)

I think the place should just be closed off completely, at least at long as we have a Hellenist government.
41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
"“Even though I’ve said this before, it bears repeating: Iran is not open for business,” he said. “The moment those talks turn into improper deals we will respond with speed and force.”"
========================

Pardon me while I ---- coughBULLSH!Tcough.

Good to clear the throat on occasion.


41 weeks ago
41 weeks ago Link To Comment
1 2 Next View All