A Deal With the Devil
On Tuesday, following the announcement that the P5+1 countries (the U.S., the U.K., France, China, Russia and Germany) had finally reached an agreement with Iran on its nuclear program, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani addressed his people. Unable to contain his joy at having brought the “Great Satan” America to its knees — during Ramadan, no less — he began by paying tribute to Islam and the legacy of the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the father of the Iranian Revolution in 1979.
“Peace and blessings upon the pure souls of the prophets and the holy men, the great Prophet of Islam [Muhammad], the imams, the imam of the martyrs [Khomeini], and the exalted martyrs, especially the nuclear [scientists], and peace and blessings upon the Hidden Imam,” he said.
In his long and detailed speech, the English translation of which was provided by the Middle East Media Research Institute, Rouhani extolled Iranian negotiators for having held out against the West. He also took the opportunity, as a member of the “pragmatic” camp in Iran, to say “we told you so” to the “ideological camp,” which had strongly opposed negotiating with the West in the first place.
Spelling out Iran’s accomplishments in Vienna, Rouhani said, “We aspired to achieve four goals: The first was to continue the nuclear capabilities, the nuclear technology, and even the nuclear activity. The second was to remove the mistaken, oppressive, and inhuman sanctions. The third was to remove the Security Council resolutions that we see as illegitimate. The fourth was to remove the nuclear dossier from Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter and the Security Council in general. All four goals have been achieved today. … Of course, as we know, the extraordinary efforts by diplomats, legal experts, economists and nuclear scientists continued throughout these past 23 months, in order to oversee these red lines so that we could achieve our goals.”
He followed up with a list of capitulations on the part of the P5+1, which he attributed to Iranian steadfastness. Among these are the number of centrifuges Iran will be able to retain — from a demand of a mere 100 at the start of the negotiations to a whopping 6,000 agreed to this week, 5,000 of which will continue to enrich uranium.
Another involves the period of Western “restrictions” on the nuclear program — from 20 years down to eight.
Where research and development are concerned, here, too, Rouhani said Iran got its way: “We wanted an agreement [under which] on the day of its implementation we would begin to inject gas into [advanced] IR-8 [centrifuges] and that is exactly what we achieved today.”
After naming a number of other points of victory for Iran, he raised the issue of sanctions. “On the day the agreement is implemented, all the sanctions — even the embargo on weapons, missiles and proliferation — will be lifted. … All the financial and banking sanctions, and those related to insurance, transportation, petrochemical [industries], precious metals, and all economic sanctions will be completely lifted, not frozen. Even the arms embargo will be stopped.”
This achievement, which will have the immediate effect of filling the till of the terrorist regime in Tehran with $100 billion, is cause for the greatest celebration. Still, Rouhani stressed the broader significance of the historic day when “the largest countries in the world and the superpowers officially recognized Iran’s nuclear activity.”
But, said Rouhani, Iranians are not the only ones pleased with this turn of events. “The people in Gaza, the West Bank, Jerusalem, and Lebanon are happy too, because the hollow efforts of the oppressive Zionist regime to thwart the negotiations during the past 23 months have failed.”
Rouhani ended with a message to the Arab countries in the region. “Do not be misled by the propaganda of the Zionist regime and the evil-mongers of this [Iranian] nation,” he warned. “Iran and its might are always your might. We see the security of the region as our security, and the stability of the region as our stability.”
On Wednesday, U.S. President Barack Obama held a press conference at the White House for the purpose of praising the nuclear agreement and patting himself on the back for having reached it. “The comprehensive long-term deal that we achieved with our allies and partners to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon represents a powerful display of American leadership and diplomacy,” he said. “It shows what we can accomplish when we lead from a position of strength and a position of principle when we unite the international community around a shared vision and we resolve to solve problems peacefully.”
Like Rouhani, Obama was touting his accomplishments. Unlike Rouhani, however, he had none to show for his efforts. And everybody realizes it, including Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the ultimate arbitrator.
The fact that the chief mullah did not nix the wording of Tuesday’s agreement — as he has done every other time his team of negotiators has met with representatives of the P5+1 over the years — is all one needs to know when forming an opinion. Indeed, Khamenei’s sole reservation about the deal has to do with his fear that it will not be upheld.
This he expressed in a letter to Rouhani on Wednesday. “Reaching a deal is a significant step,” he wrote. “But the text of the deal should be carefully scrutinized and the legal procedures should be taken so when the deal is ratified the other side cannot breach it. [After all,] some of the members of the P5+1 are not trustworthy.”
The irony here is as tragic as it is astounding. Israel, which is all too familiar with the “untrustworthy” nature of Obama and his partners in the crime against humanity they are all abetting, would be the first to assure Khamenei that, on this score, he has nothing to worry about.
Ruthie Blum is the web editor of Voice of Israel talk radio (voiceofisrael.com). This article was originally published by Israel Hayom.