Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Why the Iran Deal Won’t Work


The announcement hammered out between Western powers and Iran last week is, in all likelihood, doomed for failure, not least because of a number of unjustifiable assumptions that undergird the deal. As I argue in my new column for Defining Ideas:

The first problem with the deal is that it gives Iran an undeserved respectability that comes simply from being allowed to sign a significant international agreement.

Worse still, China and Russia should not be understood as adverse to Iran, their present and future ally. They are better understood as a Fifth Column against the West, and Iran’s many other foes, whose role in the negotiations is akin to the role that Vladimir Putin played in the embarrassing negotiations over chemical weapons in Syria that all but destroyed Obama’s credibility in foreign policy. Putin will be happy to take any excess uranium ore off the hands of the Iranians. But at the most opportune time, he might be prepared to return it to Iran if doing so would benefit Russia. The Chinese, for their part, also sense weakness in the United States and the West, as they build up illegal islands in the South China Sea subject to our diplomatic objections that accomplish nothing.

The remaining parties are our nominal allies who must believe that this nuclear deal represents a retreat from the basic proposition of Pax Americana—the guarantee that the U.S. will provide meaningful guarantees for the security of its allies. Our allies may well become less hostile to Russia and China precisely because they cannot count on U.S. leadership in tough times. The situation is starker still for the Israelis, who fear that the deal will embolden the Iranians to create more mischief in the Middle East and elsewhere. The Saudis are probably next in line in this belief. And both are surely right.

Iran’s promises count for nothing. Iran is quite happy to fund Bashar al-Assad in Syria, to back Hamas, and to launch terrorist attacks throughout the Middle East. It is eager to confront its Sunni rivals, most notably Saudi Arabia, by supporting their enemies. It is eager to annihilate Israel. Indeed now that the agreement seems in place, the Ayatollah says flat out that deal or no deal, “we will never stop supporting our friends in the region and the people of Palestine, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Bahrain and Lebanon.”

Why then would anyone be surprised that Iran would be willing to make high-sounding promises that it has every intention to quickly break? Does anyone really agree with the President’s rosy view that Iran will reciprocate our respect with its respect? Putting our best foot forward makes sense with ordinary business deals where reputations count. It makes no sense when dealing with a Holmesian bad man who has no need or intention of reciprocating good will with good will.

In short, we’ve succumbed to willful blindness. Read the argument in full here.

There are 7 comments.

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  1. PHCheese Member

    Without reading your post which I will do. IMHO it is the same reason it didn’t work in North Korea.

    • #1
    • July 21, 2015, at 11:45 AM PDT
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  2. Frozen Chosen Inactive

    Willful Blindness should be the title of Obama’s biography. The Left he represents has a psychological inability to see the world as it really is, preferring to see it as they wish it would be.

    The clock has started on Israel’s bombing of Iranian nuclear facilities. It will happen whenever they feel they can wait no longer. When it happens things will really hit the fan.

    • #2
    • July 21, 2015, at 11:57 AM PDT
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  3. SteveSc Member

    Perhaps all sides in the negotiations were more of a Pox Americana mindset instead pf a Pax Americana…

    • #3
    • July 21, 2015, at 11:58 AM PDT
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  4. Israel P. Inactive

    Frozen Chosen: The clock has started on Israel’s bombing of Iranian nuclear facilities. It will happen whenever they feel they can wait no longer. When it happens things will really hit the fan.

    And Israel will be blamed for all the bad things that happen as a result.

    • #4
    • July 21, 2015, at 12:03 PM PDT
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  5. Frozen Chosen Inactive

    Israel P.:

    Frozen Chosen: The clock has started on Israel’s bombing of Iranian nuclear facilities. It will happen whenever they feel they can wait no longer. When it happens things will really hit the fan.

    And Israel will be blamed for all the bad things that happen as a result.

    Sadly they will, even by many in this country. The only action Israel can take which will not bring down world opinion upon them is inaction – in other words, to let themselves be annihilated. Any attempts at defense will be excoriated. Hillary will be no better friend than Obama has been.

    • #5
    • July 21, 2015, at 12:12 PM PDT
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  6. Lensman Thatcher
    Lensman Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Back in 2009-10, Caroline Glick of the Jerusalem Post wrote a column in which she called Barack Obama the first “Post-American” President of the United States. I think she was too kind.

    With the Vienna Agreement and the race to the United Nations to pass a Security Council resolution yesterday, Obama has subverted American security and deliberately failed in his sworn duty “to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

    He has attempted to bind the United States to an international agreement without obeying the Constitution’s requirement that he obtain the advice and consent of a 2/3 majority of the Senate.

    Now the American people, and their representatives in Congress, are left with the task of making it clear to our friends and enemies that this “deal with the devil” is going to be disavowed on January 21, 2017 as a foolish, unconstitutional and non-binding act of a very foolish president. Anyone who does business in Iran must plan on the return in 17 months of U.S. sanctions on those who trade with our self-avowed enemy (“Death to America!”).

    Barack Obama is the first Anti-American President. He supports our enemies and deserts our allies. The Iranian general who led the effort to murder hundreds, if not thousands, of American troops in Iraq with Iranian made IED’s has been taken off the sanctions list. I guess we should be thankful he has not been invited to the White House as an honored guest.

    We are now facing a proliferation of nuclear weapons never seen before. The chances of a city somewhere in the world being destroyed by a nuke in the next 10-15 years are being multiplied ten-fold by this agreement. The risk of an EMP attack on the U.S. by Iran in that period is so real that the survivalist “preppers” are going to look like merely cautious people.

    Your children and your grandchildren are likely to pay the price of this agreement.

    • #6
    • July 21, 2015, at 12:13 PM PDT
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  7. Zafar Member

    What specifically is this deal supposed to achieve?

    Reduce Iran’s break out time to a bomb, or to neuter Iran as a force in the Middle East?

    If the first, it’s succeeded. Afaik the second option wasn’t on the table.

    • #7
    • July 21, 2015, at 8:08 PM PDT
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