While Washington if focused on the dishonest and sophomoric attempt by Barack Obama to evade any responsibility for, or take any action to remediate the dog’s breakfast he’s created in the Middle East, it is becoming obvious that Obama is leaving his successor a time bomb. A time bomb that will result in a major war in the Middle East.
At the center of this is Obama’s bromance with the Ayatollah Khameini. Somehow, Obama and his national security team arrived at the White House with the idea that our natural ally in the region is Iran. Whether they actually believe that we can coax Iran back to where it was before the 1979 Revolution or they are simply trying to be the anti-Bush team is immaterial. This fairy tale has guided US foreign policy in the region since 2009. The key piece of the deal is allowing Iran to develop a nuclear weapon.
Iran’s paramount political figure, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has responded to overtures from President Barack Obama seeking better relations by sending secret communications of his own to the White House.
The Iranian cleric wrote to Mr. Obama in recent weeks in response to an October presidential letter that raised the possibility of U.S.-Iranian cooperation in fighting Islamic State if a nuclear deal is secured, according to an Iranian diplomat. The supreme leader’s response was “respectful” but noncommittal, the diplomat said.
A senior White House official declined to confirm the existence of that letter. But it comes as the first details emerge about another letter Mr. Khamenei sent to the president early in his first term.
This letter, of course, is bull**** on its face. Iran’s course of action against ISIS will not be materially altered by our actions towards Iran. Their operations are not geared towards removing ISIS as a threat, per se, but rather mitigating the threat ISIS poses to their Iranian, Syrian, and Lebanese clients while maximizing the threat it poses to Jordan, Egypt and other areas in the region– and ultimately to Israel.
There are three points to consider in dealing with Iran.
Despite those who claim that Iran would never collaborate with a Sunni terrorist organization, the evidence proves just the opposite case.
But before declaring Iran’s president his generation’s Gorbachev, it’s worth considering some bad news. To start, Iran has had an opportunistic relationship with al-Qaeda over the years, despite the whole apostasy problem. A year ago, the Treasury Department laid a lot of this out in a designation about al-Qaeda’s network in Iran. Terrorist operatives based in Mashhad, near Iran’s border with Afghanistan, were allowed to facilitate the transfer of al-Qaeda fighters from Pakistan to Syria through Iranian territory. After 9/11, Osama bin Laden and his deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, cut a deal with Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps to allow family members to live in Iran while they moved from Afghanistan to Pakistan. Iran was also a key base in the last decade for al-Qaeda operatives such as Saif al-Adel, who was kept under a house arrest so loose he was able to write a semi-regular Internet column and help plan al-Qaeda’s war against the Iraqi government.
We’ve covered this extensively on RedState (view our Iran items here) By Obama’s natural inclination he is hostile to Israel, as a leftist he is hostile to the idea of the United States appearing either powerful or influential. His courtship of Iran, I think tied to the “reset” with Russia in which Russia was made our conduit for diplomacy with Iran, has resulted in Iran being allowed unimpeded progress in its quest for a nuke.
I describe the situation in this story but the fact is that the administration’s actions are so egregious that even the Washington Post editorial board had noticed.
The problem is: Iran really loves terrorism. Since 1979, it has used terrorism as a tool of statecraft like no other nation. In his testimonyThursday before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Nick Rasmussen, the head of the National Counterterrorism Center, said Iran and Hezbollah “remain committed to conducting terrorist activities worldwide and we are concerned their activities could either endanger or target U.S. and other Western interests.”
Iran’s leaders have been implicated in terrorist attacks in South America, Europe and the Middle East. The Justice Department in 2011 accused Iran of attempting to kill Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Washington at a popular Georgetown restaurant, Cafe Milano. For the Islamic Republic to give up its predilection for terror would require a cultural revolution inside its defense establishment. What would the Quds Force be without car bombers and kidnapping?
Some might argue that the 2013 election of President Hassan Rouhani, a supposed reformer, signifies just this kind of change. But there is little evidence he is opening up Iranian society. State executions of gays and arrests of dissidents continue. Even though Rouhani tweeted in 2013 a Jewish New Year message to his followers on Twitter, the regime remains steeped in ugly anti-Semitism. In response to the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris last month, a cultural center in Iran with close ties to the regime announced a Holocaust cartoon contest. Despite Rouhani’s campaign promises, the leaders of the country’s green movement, the people who took to the streets to protest the 2009 elections, remain under house arrest or brutal detention in the country’s prisons. If Iran is unwilling to stop terrorizing its own people, why should anyone think it will stop terrorizing the citizens of its historic enemies?
Missing from that litany is Iran’s role in the 1988 downing of PanAm 103 near Lockerbie, Scotland; bombing the US embassy and USMC barracks in Beirut; and a host of other terrorist attacks (this timeline will astound you). And now it seems that the political crisis in Argentina brought on by the murder of a prosecutor by agents of the president is an outgrowth of that policy of terror:
Intercepted conversations between representatives of the Iranian and Argentine governments point to a long pattern of secret negotiations to reach a deal in which Argentina would receive oil in exchange for shielding Iranian officials from charges that they orchestrated the bombing of a Jewish community center in 1994.
The transcripts were made public by an Argentine judge on Tuesday night, as part of a 289-page criminal complaint written by Alberto Nisman, the special prosecutor investigating the attack. Mr. Nisman was found dead in his luxury apartment on Sunday, the night before he was to present his findings to Congress.
What Obama has engaged in is a trading away of US national security for the illusion of a deal. The fact that Iran-back militias drove the US out of Yemen this week shows how utterly un-serious any offer made by Iran is. When this administration leaves the White House, Iran will be the undisputed master of Iraq, it will control both sides of the Straits of Hormuz, it will have destabilized Egypt and Libya (assuming that it has ever been stable since the Arab Spring fiasco), its client in Syria will still be in power, our allies in the region will have been stripped away because they no longer trust us and Iran will have a nuclear weapon. It is hard to see these parts adding up to anything but more dead Americans that Obama can chalk up to random violence while he golfs.