WHETHER one month or three months away – blips to the countdown – the fact of the matter is that Iran’s genocidal regime is within spitting distance of acquiring the ultimate weapons of mass destruction.The following commentaries lay it on the line: Iran’s triumph is almost assured through assists given by the leader of the free world, as such, the Islamist-in-Chief effectively surrendered the free world through the “disarming” of America and Israel. Thus, he is gifting the mad mullahs control of western civilization. This is NO exaggeration.
As a result, surely spending time jaw-jawing is the LAST tack any leader of the free world would take, especially since Iran’s mullahs have been playing rope-a-dope for decades. And yes, diplomacy, if at all doable, is preferable to war. But wishing doesn’t make it so. It’s “usefulness” has LONG since passed.
MORE on this global shaking event….
A new report that says Iran may need as little as a month to produce enough uranium for a nuclear bomb is further evidence for why Israel will take military action before that happens, an Israeli defense official said Friday.
“We have made it crystal clear – in all possible forums, that Israel will not stand by and watch Iran develop weaponry that will put us, the entire Middle East and eventually the world, under an Iranian umbrella of terror,” Danny Danon, Israel’s deputy defense minister told USA TODAY.
Iran is developing and installing new and advanced centrifuges that enable Iran to enrich even low-enriched uranium to weapons grade uranium needed for nuclear weapons within weeks, Danon said.
“This speedy enrichment capability will make timely detection and effective response to an Iranian nuclear breakout increasingly difficult,” he said.
“Breakout” refers to the time needed to convert low-enriched uranium to weapons-grade uranium. On Thursday, the Institute for Science and International Security issued a report stating that Iran could reach that breakout in as little as one month based in part on Iran’s own revelations about its nuclear program.
“If they use all their centrifuges … and their stockpiles of low- and medium-enriched uranium, that would take one to 1.6 months,” said David Albright, president of the institute and a former inspector for the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency.
The report comes as the White House is trying to persuade Congress not to go ahead with a bill to stiffen sanctions on Iran to force it to open up its program to inspection. The White House on Thursday invited senate staffers to a meeting on Iran strategy for negotiations that are to resume next month with Iran, it said.
In discussing Iran strategy, President Obama has said Iran is a year or more away from having enough enriched uranium to make a bomb.
Bernadette Meehan, an spokeswoman for the administration’s National Security Council, said the intelligence community maintains “a number of assessments” regarding potential time frames for Iran to produce enough weapons-grade uranium for one weapon or a testable nuclear device.
“We continue to closely monitor the Iranian nuclear program and its stockpile of enriched uranium,” Meehan said.
In the report, Albright said negotiations with Iran should focus on lengthening Iran’s breakout time. ISIS’ analysis is based on the latest Iranian and United Nations reports on Iran’s centrifuge equipment for producing nuclear fuel and its nuclear fuel stockpiles.
Iran’s stockpile of medium-enriched uranium has nearly doubled in a year’s time and its number of centrifuges has expanded from 12,000 in 2012 to 19,000 today.
Sen. Mark Kirk, an Illinois Republican whose Senate Banking Committee is considering legislation to tighten Iran sanctions, said the report shows that Iran is expanding its nuclear capabilities under the cover of negotiations.
“The Senate should move forward immediately with a new round of sanctions to prevent Iran from acquiring an undetectable breakout capability,” he said. The House has already passed legislation to toughen sanctions.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has said his country has no interest in nuclear weapons but that producing nuclear fuel is Iran’s right. However, Iran has blocked international inspectors from some suspected nuclear facilities, making it impossible to determine whether it is complying with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty it has signed.
United Nations inspectors say they have found evidence of a weapons program in violation of Iran’s commitment under the treaty. The USA and the U.N. Security Council have implemented economic sanctions on Iran to persuade it abide by its obligation and verify it is not developing a bomb.
Albright says negotiations with Iran should focus on establishing protocols that lengthen the time period that it would take Iran to convert uranium to weapons grade uranium.
“An essential finding is that they are currently too short and shortening further,” stated the report by the Institute for Science and International Security.
While others see the light, some of them lay it on the line, not unlike similar conclusions drawn at this American-Israeli’s site on numerous occasions. Here’s one such stark rendering:
Rouhani Rope-a-Dope and a Trip Down Memory Lane!
By Ambassador Henry F. Cooper
October 8, 2013
Last week, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani pursued a “charm offensive” in New York including in his address to the United Nations General Assembly. Because he previously diverted interests in the West with seemingly cooperative initiatives while Iran continued enriching uranium, we should be skeptical of his promises not to build nuclear weapons and mate them to ballistic missiles that could reach Israel, our European allies and the United States. He wants the West to lift its sanctions on Iran—while we, and Israel, have insisted that Iran must not gain a nuclear weapons capability. Hopefully, U.S. and other Western leaders will not be taken in by Rouhani’s soft rhetoric. Stay tuned.
Mohamed Ali’s “rope-a-dope” strategy, used to defeat George Foreman for the Heavyweight Title by letting the ropes absorb much of energy from Foreman’s punches while counter-punching only enough to avoid having the referee stop the fight—Foreman tired, made mistakes and gave Ali an opening for a knockout. Seems like a fair metaphor for Iran and Iranian President Rouhani’s likely strategy in dealing with President Obama. As Senator John McCain noted, it worked like a charm for Russia’s President Putin to exploit Obama’s bluster and inept handling of Syria to gain the initiative in the Middle East, so why not for Russia’s other main ally in the Middle East—Iran, and Rouhani in particular?
The rope-a-dope continues for Syria—as much of the media hypes hopeful interactions with Syria’s chemical weapon stores. Seldom mentioned is that it early was noted that Syria provided information on its chemical weapons stores that did not square with U.S. estimates (previously shared as the basis for the new agreement brokered by Russia). Secretary of State John Kerry tries, with notoriety but little success, to add sound verification measures to Russia’s brokered agreement. While we await all the fine print, we should expect that Secretary Kerry’s “enforceable” verification objective likely is a figment of his imagination. Any notable improvement will have to be approved by the U.N. Security Council—where Russia and China can use their veto power to block any measure they don’t like—don’t hold your breath waiting for anything of note on that front.
Regarding Iran and its President—Hassan Rouhani, I could not agree more with Charles Krauthammer’s September 27th Washington Post article that presaged Rouhani’s “moderate” antics demonstrated during his charm offensive in New York City while visiting to address the United Nations General Assembly. I’m pleased that his excellent article notes many of the points of my emails: September 24—“Don’t Believe your Eyes,” June 18—“Hope for the Best and Prepare for the Worst” and August 13—“Definitely a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing.” In one of his memorable phrases, Krauthammer wrote, “Such is their contempt for us that they don’t even hide their strategy: Spin the centrifuges while spinning the West.” And he shared a few more pertinent points that should inform those who hope for the best but believe we must prepare for the worst if we are to ever come close to achieving our objectives in the Middle East.
Implications from a Short Trip Down Memory Lane.
I first met Charles Krauthammer at Ambassador Max Kampelman’s home in Georgetown when I was Max’s Deputy and he led the Geneva Nuclear and Space Talks with the former Soviet Union. He, like Max, was—and may still be as far as I know—a defense minded Democrat after the mold of Washington’s Senator Scoop Jackson. (Actually, Max was Hubert Humphrey’s only staffer when he first came to town as Minnesota’s junior senator.) I’ve been among Charles’s admirers ever since, even on rare occasions when I have disagreed with him.
Many of Charles’ views on negotiating with adversaries are ones I shared with Max, my boss; and they helped guide our Geneva talks with the Soviets—which led to the first arms control agreements actually to reduce nuclear arms. We, in turn, were privileged to work for President Ronald Reagan, who also emphasized a few overarching principles—among them, that we should:
- Understand those with whom we negotiate—especially how they see the world from their point-of-view, and
- Be prepared to speak the truth to all in polite but unapologetic terms.
Under the first principle, Reagan understood Soviet strategic perspectives about which the preceding administration made hopeful but incorrect assumptions. Consequently, the first thing President Reagan did was to insure that we would negotiate from a position of strength. He rejected previous détente policies that had guided U.S. strategic thinking for years—noting memorably that his objective was that, “We win, they lose.” The preceding administration had hollowed-out our military while negotiating an unverifiable Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) Treaty that legitimized a massive Soviet build-up of nuclear arms while ours atrophied. (It was never ratified, since Reagan and many others on his team rejected it.) While ignoring much criticism from the liberal elite, Reagan withdrew from negotiations for a year, while initiating a major strategic modernization program, before beginning new Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START) aimed at negotiating from a position of strength actually to reduce nuclear arms—not legitimizing a build-up as had been the result of previous mostly unverifiable treaties.
On the second principle, Reagan memorably overruled his diplomats in speaking the truth about and to the Soviets—for example in calling the Soviet Union the “evil empire” . . . which it definitely was . . . and later in Berlin challenging, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” His policies and loyal supporters at home and abroad were most pleased to see the breakup of the Soviet Union, which Russia’s President Vladimir Putin called the “greatest geopolitical disaster of the 20th century” . . . lest there be any doubt about his objectives today in the Middle East or elsewhere.
President Obama should note these principles—so far given short shrift by him and his negotiators. I want to mention just a few specifics.
With respect to our dealings with Russia, the Obama administration has regressed to a world in some ways like the one President Reagan inherited, with a so-called New START treaty that cut our strategic arms while legitimizing still increasing Russian nuclear arms, a modernization program reminiscent of the 1970s Soviet arms control world that Reagan inherited. In reality, it is a New SALT treaty, not a New START treaty—Reagan and his negotiators would not have produced such an unbalanced treaty. And President Obama’s promise, last Fall, of “flexibility” on missile defenses after being re-elected does not bode well for U.S. interests in current and future talks with Russia that could link U.S. concessions with things we want from Russia—e.g., including in the Middle East where our handling of Syria has left Putin in charge.
A complication in our dealings with Russia is that we should be confronting another “evil empire,” to use Reagan’s description of the Soviet Union as the then preeminent Communist power seeking world domination. We could and should use that same term to describe Islamic true believers who think that under sharia law which American Islamists see as preeminent even over the U.S. Constitution, that their mission is to reign supreme over all others in a global Caliphate—to impose their beliefs on all others by force if needed, potentially to kill them if they refuse to submit. In particular, this is the context for Iran’s mullahs calling Israel the “Little Satan” and America the “Great Satan,” and threatening to destroy both.
Oblivious to an Existential Threat?
The Obama administration seems to ignore these realities—to put it kindly. For example, the Director of National Intelligence absurdly testified that the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is a “largely secular organization, which has eschewed violence.” Try telling that to the Egyptians who threw out elected President Mohamed Morsi because he gave preeminence to the Brotherhood. Or consider the Brotherhood’s motto: “Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. The Qur’an is our law. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest aspiration.”
The administration also has limited the flow of information about this Islamist threat to the front lines of those confronting it—whether on the battlefield, in diplomatic actions, or even within Washington’s halls of government. And many senators and representatives have ridiculed efforts of their colleagues to smoke out this poison within our ranks. For a comprehensive and referenced discussion of this threat, see the recent Gatestone Institute article by Claire Lopez, formerly a career operations officer with the Central Intelligence Agency, the conclusion of which is quoted below.
Bottom Lines for Iran.
We need to understand threats confronting us and speak the truth to power about them—especially as they mature and grow. While we still retain global power, not effectively countering “rope-a-dope” strategies being employed against us is a danger, especially re. Iran—we are not dealing effectively with its existential threat to all we hold dear.
Last week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu laid out his related concerns in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly—and, I am sure, in private to President Obama. They are entirely consistent with Charles Krauthammer’s—and mine. He made clear that Israel will do all in its power to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons—and urged that the international community—particularly the United States—should not be taken in by Iranian deceptions intended to persuade the West to reduce it sanctions on trade with Iran while continuing to reduce the time for an Iranian breakout capability to producing nuclear weapons—already within a period of months.
As Netanyahu noted, Iran has intercontinental range ballistic missiles (ICBMs) that can reach the United States—therefore, we should be as concerned as Israel about Iran getting nuclear weapons that could be mated to such missiles to attack us as well as Israel. As we have noted previously, Iran (and also North Korea) has also launched satellites capable of carrying nuclear weapons to attack any place on Earth—they head south, and on their initial passage over the United States could detonate a nuclear weapon and expose the entire continental U.S. to an EMP. Today, we are undefended against this threat.
In short, we should do what we can not to fall prey to Rouhani and other rope-a-dope maneuvers—not to mention those of Iran’s real leader—Rouhani’s boss, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Following Rouhani’s return from New York last week, Khamenei let everyone know on a state TV broadcast that “We support the government’s diplomatic moves including the New York trip because we have faith in them [Rouhani et al]. But some of what happened in New York was not appropriate” . . . presumably a reference to his 15 minute telephone call from President Obama in which Rouhani may have stepped over some line of concern. And Khamenei made clear that he did not trust Americans—that feeling is, or should be, mutual. Perhaps there’s a little “good cop, bad cop” going on here?
Continue reading the whole analysis atop the linked article!
Understood within the above prism, cogently laid out by High Frontier, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist (besides, how many of us are endowed with such brain power…not too many) to figure out the calculus: Iran is Allah-bent on gaining the bomb – at ALL costs, even if their citizens have to starve in the process – and the Islamist-in-Chief is similarly inclined to gift it to them. No sense in pussyfooting otherwise.
One either tends towards reality-based thinking, or not. But when one lives in close proximity to hell fire, continuing to believe in fantastical conclusions is a non-starter. Not sure about others, but would rather be prepared – as best as possible – for eventual chaos, rather than blindsided.
For many unfathomable reasons, PM Netanyahu allowed half of world Jewry to be boxed in, all the way down to the bewitching hour. While his concentration should not be distracted by this and that (well deserved) smack – during this MOST perilous juncture in Israel’s history, as Jerusalem prepares to act at this twilight hour – surely his decision to hitch Israel’s fate in line with Barack HUSSEIN Obama’s “promises” will be revealed as an out-sized national/global disaster that should never have occurred!
Rest assured, history will vilify both leaders. One sought to bring the west to its knees, whereas the other’s spinelessness led Israel (half of world Jewry, mere decades after the Holocaust) right down to the “trip wire” !