Robert Spencer: IRAN: THE DEBACLE LOOMS

A nuclear agreement with Iran appears to be imminent, and it is unlikely to mean anything but disaster for the United States, Israel, and the entire free world.

AP reported Monday that “disputes over attempts to probe Tehran’s alleged work on nuclear weapons unexpectedly persisted at Iran nuclear talks on Monday, diplomats said, threatening plans to wrap up a deal by midnight.” However, Omni Ceren of the Israel Project reported Monday evening that the announcement of an agreement was imminent: “Journalists are being told ‘early morning’ Vienna time. No one’s quite sure if that means 2am or 5am or 7am. It probably means around 6am.” 

Then a couple of hours later, Ceren added: “Here in Vienna it looks like the announcement is being pushed from the predawn hours to the mid-to-late morning. Someone may have decided that it was a step too far - after 17 days - to drag journalists across the Danube to the convention center at 5 in the morning for a photo op and press conference that everyone else was going to livestream anyway. So reporters and diplomats will at least get some sleep tonight.”

Regardless of all these delays, there seemed to be no stopping the agreement from coming. China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi said: “The foreign ministers are gathered to bring negotiations to a conclusion. We believe there could not be further delay.”

No one is certain what the details of the agreement will be, but Reuters reported Monday that “a draft nuclear deal between Iran and six major powers calls for U.N. inspectors to have access to all suspect Iranian sites, including military…” Sounds good, no? But here’s the catch: “…based on consultations between the powers and Tehran.” So the Iranian mullahs will have a say in what sites get inspected, and how the inspections are conducted. What could possibly go wrong?

Plenty, of course. As the nuclear agreement looms, the Iranian regime is making absolutely no effort affect even the appearance of a desire for peace and harmonious coexistence with nations it regards as its enemies. The mullahs demonstrate again and again that they are well aware that there is nothing, absolutely nothing, they can do to make Barack Obama and John Kerry reconsider their determination to conclude an agreement with Iran. 

And with the glee of a rebellious adolescent, they seem to be intent on rubbing it in. Friday was “Death to Israel Day” in Iran, and according to Arutz Sheva, “it also was the launch date for an Iranian cellphone game that has players in the Islamic state practice raining potentially nuclear-tipped missiles on Israel.”

That same day, according to the Associated Press, “tens of thousands of Iranians chanted ‘Down with America’ and ‘Death to Israel’ during annual pro-Palestinian rallies nationwide…as a top leader said the U.S. would be making a ‘strategic mistake’ if it pulled out of ongoing negotiations on Tehran’s nuclear program.” Trust a man chanting “Death to America” to have America’s best interests at heart and know when the U.S. was making a “strategic mistake.”

The day before that, reported CNN, “a U.S. Navy ship and helicopter were repeatedly targeted by a laser device on board an Iranian-flagged merchant ship beginning on Sunday in the Gulf of Aden, according to a U.S. defense official.” It added that the Navy was “not certain exactly what the device was, or how powerful it was, but believes it was not of industrial or military grade quality since there was no damage. The incidents are viewed at this point as harassment from the Iranians.” Harassment from our negotiating partners and fellow seekers of peace.

It shouldn’t have to be stated, but it does: the Iranian mullahs do not want peace. They do not want coexistence. They want to destroy Israel, and may well use nuclear weapons to destroy it. They are only interested in a nuclear deal for what they can gain from it in terms of an easing of sanctions, which will result in a much-needed boost to the Iranian economy, and a blanket permission to manufacture nuclear weapons.

The Obama Administration is in a position to know all this. Nonetheless, it is avid to close the deal. “The administration,” Ceren reported Monday night, “will go to the United Nations to pass a binding resolution unwinding sanctions before Congress has a chance to weigh in.”

The catastrophe is on the horizon. And we’re all going along for the ride.