WASHINGTON – In three decades, America’s slogan on nuclear arms negotiations has slipped from Ronald Reagan’s “trust but verify” to Barack Obama’s “can’t trust and can’t verify.”
All of the Senate’s Democrats except Sen. Charles Schumer and three others on Thursday followed President Obama’s assurances that the “agreement” with Iran was a “good deal.” The other Democrats successfully blocked Republican efforts to send negotiators back to the table.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., declared for Obama’s legacy program early. Rep. Brian Higgins, D-Buffalo, later. Schumer, risking his hopes of becoming Democratic leader in 2017, defied the president months ago saying Iran couldn’t be trusted to keep the agreement.
Schumer is absolutely right. In the weeks since Schumer announced his opposition, it was learned Secretary of State John Kerry left intact Iran’s plans to build an intercontinental ballistic missile program.
Then it was learned Iran wouldn’t allow Americans on any inspection team, and finally, Iran’s insistence on self-inspecting Iran’s super-secret military base at Parchin. A couple dozen miles southeast of Teheran, Parchin is believed to be home to Iran’s N-bomb and ICBM research.
Quite a steep fall from Obama’s original goals. The Washington Post listed them this way: None of Iran’s thousands of nuclear facilities will be closed and Iran’s stockpile of enriched uranium will be only reduced – and just for 15 years. Three years ago, Obama declared that he would only accept Iran’s “ending” its nuclear enrichment program.
When the deal becomes final in six to nine months, all of the sanctions that drove Iran to the table with the United States, which its leaders still describe as the Great Satan, will be lifted. Iran’s frozen overseas assets, estimated at between $100 billion and $150 billion, will be released. Freed for Iran to spend on advanced Russian surface to air missiles, and more international terror.
While these talks were underway, our own State Department continued to list Iran as a leading state sponsor of terrorism. It’s a long report, but in part our government said last year Iran – even with the sanctions in place – provided “arms, financing, training” and other forms of help to terrorist campaigns “that resulted in the deaths of at least 191,000 people in Syria, according to August U.N. estimates.”
Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., said “we are rewarding years of [Iran’s] deception, deceit and wanton disregard of international law …” according to the Times of Israel. Booker voted for the deal anyway.
Iran’s perpetual target is Israel, the only functional republic in the Mideast and our only reliable ally.
Americans nonetheless continue to be deeply divided over whether Israel should even exist. It was like that in the state’s very beginning. In 1948, President Harry S. Truman was torn from all sides over whether to recognize Israel.
Israel’s supporters pressed Truman to meet with Zionist leader Chaim Weizmann. Truman put it off. Then Eddie Jacobson, a former business partner from Missouri, called on Truman unannounced. According to Truman biographer Merle Miller, Jacobson wept until Truman agreed to see Weizmann.
The biggest obstacles to recognition were the eastern elites in the State Department, anti-Semites who also looked down their noses at Truman because he was not well born. Secretary of State George C. Marshall was their leader.
Marshall, according to State Department archives, openly threatened Truman at a White House meeting on the question, saying he would “vote against” Truman if he opted for recognition.
When Truman finally opted for Israel, according to Miller, Marshall stomped out on Truman without speaking.
Last week, Obama’s Iran deal had a voter approval rating of only 21 percent – down from 33 percent in July, according to the Pew survey.