Washington Post echos Natanyahu’s concerns over Iran deal without mentioning him once

Washington Post editorial raises 3 main concerns over potential nuclear deal with Iran.
• 2 are: The Obama administration would avoid confronting Iran & the White House hinted that they would implement future agreements without Congressional approval.


No deal has been signed between Iran and world powers yet, but the reports continuously leaking out of the negotiating rooms and the stern warnings being issued by Israel are making quite a few Americans wary of a possible bad deal. Over the weekend, the Washington Post ran an editorial titled “The emerging Iran nuclear deal raises major concerns” that leveled criticism at the conduct of the American administration.

Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger – Photo: AFP

“Though we have long supported negotiations with Iran as well as the interim agreement the United States and its allies struck with Tehran, we share several of those concerns and believe they deserve more debate now — before negotiators present the world with a fait accompli,” began the editorial. The potential complications of a nuclear agreement with Iran have been raised by many, and the editorial specifically mentions former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Senator Timothy Kaine. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has repeatedly warned against a bad deal with Iran, was entirely overlooked.

The editorial divided the problems of the potential deal into three main concerns. The first was that the process, which began with the aim of preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons, would “evolve into a plan to tolerate and temporarily restrict that capability.”

The second was that as long as the talks were ongoing, the Obama administration would avoid confronting Iran’s aggressive efforts to increase its influence in the Middle East, and that the U.S. “seems ready to concede Tehran a place as a regional power at the expense of Israel and other U.S. allies.”

The third was that the White House hinted that they would implement the future agreement without Congressional approval. “Instead, an accord that would have far-reaching implications for nuclear proliferation and U.S. national security would be imposed unilaterally by a president with less than two years left in his term.”

Convincing the skeptics

The post quoted Kissinger as saying that the talks, having started out as an international effort, have now turned into an “essentially bilateral negotiation between the United States and Iran” over the scope of Iran’s nuclear capability and not over its very existence.

“Where it once aimed to eliminate Iran’s ability to enrich uranium, the administration now appears ready to accept an infrastructure of thousands of Iranian centrifuges,” the editorial went on to assert. “As several senators pointed out last month during a hearing of the Foreign Relations Committee, the prospective deal would leave Iran as a nuclear-threshold state while theoretically giving the world time to respond if Tehran chose to build a weapon.”

The Washington Post editorial raises the question whether it would even be possible to prevent Iran from violating their commitments and clandestinely pursuing nuclear capability. Senator Kaine is quoted in this context as someone who points to the failed American efforts to negotiate with North Korea over its nuclear program. He warned that with Iran, “a nation that has proven to be very untrustworthy … the end result is more likely to be a North Korean situation” if existing infrastructure is not dismantled.

The editorial also leveled harsh criticism at the absence of any American response to Iranian attempts to achieve hegemony in the Middle East. “Rather than contest the Iranian bid for regional hegemony, as has every previous U.S. administration since the 1970s, [President Barack] Obama appears ready to concede Iran a place in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and beyond — a policy that is viewed with alarm by Israel, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Turkey, among other allies.”

Finally, the editorial stressed the editors’ vehement opposition to the implementation of a nuclear deal with Iran without Congressional approval. “Such a unilateral course by Mr. Obama would alienate even his strongest congressional supporters. It would mean that a deal with Iran could be reversed, within months of its completion, by the next president. It’s hard to escape the conclusion that Mr. Obama wishes to avoid congressional review because he suspects a bipartisan majority would oppose the deal he is prepared to make,” the editorial argued.

“If so, the right response to the questions now being raised is to seek better terms from Iran — or convince the doubters that an accord blessing and preserving Iran’s nuclear potential is better than the alternatives,” the editorial concluded.


View original Israel Hayom publication at: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=23385