BIG BREAKING UPDATE:
No. Snap. Inspections.
We got nothing. Iran got everything.
I’ve never been more afraid that someday we’re going to lose a city or two, or that Israel’s existence will soon be threatened like never before.
Our least bad hope now might be for the widest possible Middle Eastern war, one big and bad enough to bring down the Mullah’s regime and pummel every nuclear and military site in that country.
ORGINAL POST BELOW:
A deal is a deal — except when maybe it isn’t:
The Islamic republic has been negotiating with the U.S., Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China for years, with diplomats most recently extending deadline after deadline in hopes of arriving at a workable plan.
President Barack Obama said the deal ensures that “Iran’s pathway to a nuclear weapon” has been cut off.
“Today… we have stopped the spread of nuclear weapons in this region,” he said in an early-morning televised statement.
His remarks appeared aimed at reassuring close U.S. allies like Israel and Saudi Arabia, who have vehemently opposed a deal and insisted Iran cannot be trusted with a nuclear program of any kind.
Obama said that if Iran violates the terms of the agreement, sanctions will be snapped back into place.
The deal is “not built on trust,” he explained. “It is built on verification.”
It took years to build the sanctions regime; it will not “snap back” once trading begins again. As for the verification process, that’s been a huge sticking point, with Iran refusing to consider unannounced inspection, or even
to acknowledge all of its nuclear sites. This morning’s early stories give no indication if the Iranians suddenly budged, or if the Obama Administration re-upped their demands after having previously walked them back.
Without instant and unfettered inspections of each and every one of Iran’s nuclear sites, this deal isn’t worth the 80 pages of paper it’s printed on.
Then there’s this massive lie:
“Put simply,” the president said, “no deal means the chance of more war in the Middle East.”
He said this as Iranian militiamen prepare to “help” Iraqi security forces retake the city of Fallujah from the Islamic State. Like the sanctions, will those Iranian forces “snap back” to Iran once ISIS is defeated? That seems… unlikely, given Iran’s longtime ambition to unite with its Shi’ite coreligionists in Iraq.
Then there’s expected resistance in Congress, although Obama has said he’ll veto any Congressional action to put a halt to the agreement.
Much, much more to come.
UPDATE: Details on the inspections provisions are still murky, but I did find this:
A senior Western diplomat says a landmark Iran nuclear agreement has been reached.
The diplomat made the comments Tuesday amid nonstop negotiations between Iran and world powers in Vienna.
The diplomat says it includes a compromise between Washington and Tehran that would allow U.N. inspectors to press for visits to Iranian military sites as part of their monitoring duties. Iranian state television earlier rejected such a demand.
The diplomat spoke on condition of anonymity pending a formal announcement, expected after a 10:30 a.m. final meeting between all negotiators.
“Allow U.N. inspectors to press for visits” — what the hell does that mean? Does it mean that inspectors must ask permission first, and that Iran is free to refuse?
MORE: This deal keeps getting worse all the time. Or at least that’s my takeaway from this graf from Politico’s writeup:
Iran has also agreed to modify a plutonium-fueled nuclear reactor so that its fuel cannot be reprocessed for use in a weapon. And it will allow inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency broad access to suspected nuclear sites, as well as cooperate with an IAEA investigation into its past activities, although many crucial details have yet to be released.
A plutonium-filled reactor? Do they have more than one? And why did Iran need a plutonium reactor in the first place?
And does “broad access” include immediate and unannounced inspections, or are UN officials just “allowed” to “press for visits?”
Crucial details, indeed.