The deal with Iran: Peace in our time ?

After years of negotiation, Europe and America have seemingly come to terms with the following fact: Iran is the devil who will have to be dealt with on terms that will possibly limit her threatening nuclear capabilities at least for now. After lauding the deal as an option that is better than war, President Obama has presented the American people, if not the world, with a result that seemingly only postpones the inevitable.

Give the negotiators credit — they stuck with a vision that they believed would make the world a safer place by placing a number of restrictions and limitations on Iran’s nuclear-making capabilities, a country that has declared death to America and Israel so many times, one can safely say that one has lost count. However, the whole deal is subject to verification, not trust, through an agency called the International Atomic Energy Agency, a castrated arm of the United Nations, which has no power, and which has been constantly fooled, limited, and taken for excessive rides by an Iran who has become a master of deception and constant mistrust.

And after all the expected reactions from the right and the left were announced, the question is: why did President Obama and Europe pursue this deal with Iran ?

If you look at the larger, more grandiose picture of the President’s foreign policy, you will see a very interesting revolution having taken place: he has opened up and tried to turn the tables back with countries traditionally seen as America’s enemies. He opened negotiations and has secured a deal with Cuba that will focus on securing normal diplomatic relationships by first opening up borders for travel and lifting trade embargoes. He attempted to negotiate the conclusion to the war in the Ukraine with Russia, only to have Putin run circles around him, and prove how ineffective a president with hopes is against a president without scruples or morals. And when first elected to the Office of President, Obama made, as his intended cornerstone of foreign policy, a trip to the Moslem world to tell them America was not really that bad and wanted them on his side. And now Iran.

Do you see a picture here ?

In fact, the legacy Obama wishes to leave with less than two years to go of his second term has allowed him to shift policy regarding his original declared intentions with Iran. Remember, he had first stated to eliminate Iran’s nuclear program entirely. That did not happen, and, in fact, after ten years, Iran will have the option to go full steam ahead to strive to become a major nuclear power in the Middle East. Now, if we were talking about Switzerland or Finland, that would not be so much a world issue. But we are talking about a country who, in truth, is seeking to dominate the entire area through its use of terrorist cohorts who are fighting in Syria, Iraq, Libya, Lebanon, and, of course, always threatening Israel.

ISIS speaks of re-creating a caliphate, but that goes directly contrary to Iran’s attempts to rebuild the Persian Empire. Both will not succeed…and the winner, whoever it is, will be a constant threat to the well-being and safety of the West. Obama’s response to this will be: we are only focused on nuclear arms deals, and cannot allow ourselves to be deflected by other tawdry matters of international relations in which Iran is involved.

And if the deal were only about nuclear reactors, nuclear facilities, nuclear bombs, we would have plenty to keep us worried. But here is the rub: as a result of accepting the West’s terms of the treaty, more than $150 billion of sanctions relief will be offered to Iran as a gift.

The real ongoing fear is that Iran will divert part of this sweepstakes windfall to assisting and promoting its terrorist cohorts throughout the Middle East to continue destabilizing the area until it alone dominates militarily and economically…and how this will impact on the West will never be good, for, unlike Las Vegas, what happens in the Middle East never stays in the Middle East.

Remember that the Middle East, following the Arab Spring, has become transformed into a Winter of Hell, teeming with terrorist groups, each of whom are attempting to carve out their own niche of territory for themselves, killing and massacring and beheading everyone who gets in their way.

Furthermore, despite vocal opposition from certain parts of Congress, the truth is that, at the end of the day, President Obama will have his way, because Congress may have a loud decibel level of protest, but they will never want to embarrass their President on such a foreign policy foundation such as this. They may not like the President, but they are American patriots, and to have the President internationally humiliated by failing to approve this treaty would be disastrous: America would be seen to by untrustworthy, weak, hand-bound, and politically straight-jacketed, and no American politician would want that vision to be realized

So, we are looking at a scorpion, and hoping it wont bite the hand that feeds it. But we know otherwise, and it is that reality which threatens to dissipate the hopes and raise the concerns of many in the world. And maybe these two simple details should feed that concern: the first is that Iranians are excessively delighted about the terms of the treaty (did they really succeed in getting everything they wanted ?). The second is that Russia and China lauded the treaty in stratospherically happy terms, the former country even remarking that we could all now breathe a sigh of relief.

The truth is that when you are dealing with Iran and its mullahs, the only country that can now sigh with delighted relief is Iran itself, as it laughs all the way to the bank. Do please note, however, that the deal has not yet been signed and awaits signatures. Should we hope that all the papers of the deal suddenly disappear only to be found in a time capsule some 300 years hence ?

Respectfully submitted

Chaim R. Landau

About the Author
Rabbi Chaim Landau is Emeritus Rabbi and President of the Baltimore Board of Rabbis. He served the Bnai Jacob Congregation and later Ner Tamid Congregation in Baltimore. He was born in the UK, graduated Jews College with Bachelors Degree in Jewish Studies, has Smichah from Israel.
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