Spoiler alert: The sanctions against Iran prevent it from exporting its massive resources of (conventional, unfracked) gas via a proposed pipeline in Syria. Guess who in the US might be against lifting those sanctions. Give up ? (Hint: rhymes with ‘crackers’)
The Texas delegation turned out in force for Netanyahu’s sales pitch for the gas sanctions.
Ben Netanyahu has been lying about Iran’s nuclear capability for over 20 years. It’s a sure-fire way to get re-elected in Israel. They evidently eat that stuff up like wing nuts.
Specifically he has told American audiences that Iran will have a bomb in :
A. “3 to 5 years ago” – which he claimed the first time he spoke to Congress 19 years ago
B. “Within a few months maybe weeks” – which he claimed when he spoke to the UN three years ago.
C. “Any day now” – which he implied in his own re-election speak to Congress today.
He literally just makes this stuff up. The Boychik that Cried Wolf.
Bibi’s fear mongering assumes that :
A. “Iran is the greatest terrorist threat in the world today.”
Nope, that would be
ISIS, ISIL, Daesh – that the Iranians are fighting every day and well. Iran is the world’s ally against Daesh.
Iran hasn’t started a war in over 200 years. The Iran Iraq war was initiated by Iraq.
Netanyahu would blame the Iranians if a jew caught the flu in Peru.
B. Iran will be the first Moslem country to have The Bomb. No, that would be Pakistan and Turkey, who had nuclear weapons long before Bibi started fear mongering about the Iranian Moslem Bomb. If the Iranians really wanted a nuclear bomb and a rocket to deliver it, they could just buy them from the North Koreans.
What the Iranians are trying to do is have a viable nuclear power system – like say France – for the day when they are not net exporters of oil and gas. OK by me. Toss in some solar while at it. Might cause less trouble. Just a suggestion.
So why did Netanyahu come to Congress to make the same canned fear-mongering speech ?
And the Republicans love this sort of chickenhawk show boating – on the same day they caved on funding Homeland Security.
“Weapons of Mass Deception” Chickenhawk Cheney showed up in his cowboy hat to pep talk Republicans before the speech.
That backed Newt Gingrich (!) in the last Republican Presidential primary. Shel met with his Boy Bib. Right before Bibi went out and frack bombed Iran again to Congress.
If we wanted an Israeli politician to tell us how to run our foreign policy, we would have elected Newt Gingrich.
Guess what the biggest sanction is on Iran. The export of natural gas to Europe – via Syria. Thru the Daesh Caliphate.
Despite that, alarmist rhetoric on the theme has been a staple of Mr. Netanyahu’s career. In an interview with the BBC in 1997, he accused Iran of secretly “building a formidable arsenal of ballistic missiles,” predicting that eventually Manhattan would be within range. In 1996, he stood before Congress and urged other nations to join him to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear capability, stressing that “time is running out.” Earlier, as a member of Parliament, in 1992, he predicted that Iran would be able to produce a nuclear weapon within three to five years.
Despite extensive inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency, no evidence has ever been presented to contradict the clear commitment by Iran’s leaders that they would under no circumstances engage in manufacturing, stockpiling and using nuclear weapons. In 2013, for example, only Japan, which has many more nuclear facilities than Iran, was subject to greater agency scrutiny.
Yet, in his speech this week, Mr. Netanyahu claimed the agency had determined that Iran had “a military nuclear program.” This is a gross distortion of the agency’s position. The “possible military dimensions,” which Mr. Netanyahu amplifies on every available occasion, are based not on the agency’s findings but on referrals by other member states with their own political agendas. In one case, in 2012, a former agency director dismissed such a report “because there was no chain of custody for the paper, no clear source, document markings, date of issue or anything else that could establish its authenticity.”
Iran has also alerted the agency to many errors in the relevant documents, and our position has been confirmed by independent nonproliferation experts. We will nevertheless continue to work with the agency to resolve this issue — despite our skepticism, which leads us to recallthe notorious forged document about Niger’s “yellowcake” uranium that was used to coax the Security Council into authorizing the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
As one side of the talks that continue in Geneva, Iran can also bear testimony to the campaign of misinformation by Mr. Netanyahu to mislead the global public about the details of those nuclear negotiations. When the parties were finalizing the interim agreement in 2013, Mr. Netanyahu claimed that it would involve Iran’s receiving $50 billion in sanctions relief; the actual amount was about $7 billion. And as for his prediction that Iran would never abide by the terms of the accord, Iran has dutifully stood by every commitment — as the International Atomic Energy Agency has reported.
Mr. Netanyahu seems to be in a state of panic at the prospect of losing this tool with which to attack Iran, as we do all in our power to address the genuine concerns of the international community and arrive at a settlement over our country’s nuclear energy program. Iran’s efforts, epitomized by the 2013 interim agreement, aim to resolve the issue with the P5-plus-1 group of countries (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, plus Germany). Since Israel’s prime minister appears to be a person who thrives on chaos and conflict, we fear that he may have further plans to poison the atmosphere and sow discord among those involved in this historic effort.
There are other great issues at hand in the Middle East. The violent extremism we see in Syria and Iraq is one, and to fight it effectively, we need to ease international tensions. We must all address the problem of the breeding grounds that are delivering fresh recruits to the terrorist cause. Israeli aggression and the occupation of Palestinian territories have always been of major propaganda value for extremist recruitment.
During the quarter-century that Mr. Netanyahu and his allies have tried to keep Iran’s nuclear program at the forefront of the global agenda, they increased the number of illegal settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem to more than 750,000 from about 300,000. At the same time, Palestinians have continued to be evicted from their homes and land. This historic wrong, coupled with the blockade of Gaza, is the real ticking bomb in the Middle East. The whole world should work to defuse it by rising above petty politics and the lobbying of narrow-minded pressure groups.