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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 4/15/15

A Nuclear Deal with Iran was probably scuttled yesterday

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Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee

A final nuclear deal with Iran in all probability was scuttled yesterday, although you won't read it as such in our corporate MSM.

What you will read is Obama was under siege to sign a compromise bill [1] as Senate Republicans and some Democrats turned the screws forcing him to relent giving Congress a say in voting on, and PRIOR to, any final "diplomatic" accord with Iran-a role that has no precedent in US international diplomacy- particularly in regard to the current economic sanctions on Iran and all to be completed by the end of June.

Meanwhile the White House "insisted they extracted crucial last minute concessions"[2] saying if the Senate rejected an agreement Obama could veto it and presumably they wouldn't have enough votes to override the veto.

Apparently what they want is a 30 day review period-reduced from 60 days-of a final agreement, 12 days for the president to accept or veto a congressional resolution and then 10 days for congress to override a veto. Thus 52 days before any sanctions could be lifted but if a final accord is not submitted to Congress by July 9 the review would go back to 60 days. Got all that?

It's as if the administration and the Congress are completely oblivious to the statements made last Thursday by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, "The sanctions should be lifted all together on the same day of the agreement, not six months or one year later" as well as Iran supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamanei concurring, "the sanctions be lifted the same day of the agreement."

Unless I'm mistaken those statements from the top Iranian officials seem pretty definitive and non-negotiable before Iran signs any final deal.

Yet nothing the Iranian's say penetrates "official" Washington. It's not surprising. When you're the hegemonic power in "negotiations" what you say is essentially ultimatums and the other side must accede to your demands or else.

But Iran isn't about to roll over in the face of US bullying.

While Washington was doing its "Kabuki" dance over an Iranian nuclear deal yesterday, the Russian's went ahead and lifted its embargo on Iran to make good on the $800 million 2007 deal with Iran for the delivery of S-300 missiles [3]-a completely defensive ABM system upgrading Iran's air defenses.

Iran obviously recognizes US machinations behind the "negotiations" over its nuclear program and the treacherous route placed before them to sanctions being lifted. So Russian President Vladimir Putin obliged Iran and gave it the means to adequately defend against a potential aerial attack on its nuclear facilities.

No sooner than the missile deal with Iran was announced Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Putin expressing "grave concerns" saying "this will only encourage Iranian aggression in the region"-which is laughable considering Israel's aggression on the Palestinian's in Gaza and its apartheid policies in the West Bank and now its collusion with Saudi Arabia supporting ISIS in Syria against the government of Bashar Assad. All this while Washington conducts a bombing campaign against ISIS in Syria and Iraq and turning a blind eye-but supplying weapons to Saudi Arabia and the other gulf monarchies bombing the Yemeni Houthi's who overthrew the US backed puppet regime of Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi in 2014.

Amidst all this mayhem there's Congress poking its finger in Obama's eye and likely torpedoing diplomacy with Iran, a country- if "official" Washington wasn't so mad with neo-con fantasies of regime change crazies calling the shots- that would not only be capable of taking on ISIS and eliminating this scourge but help bring stability to the Middle East.

But that isn't in Washington's playbook.

It's no wonder chaos rages in the area with more to come.

[1] Obama Yields, Allowing Congress Say on Iran Nuclear Deal", by Jonathan Weisman and Peter Baker, "The New York Times", April 14, 2015

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