FreeAllThree.com Editorial: Our prediction is that the Iran nuclear deal will most likely be rejected in both houses of Congress on a bi-partisan basis by the deadline date of September 17. However, Congress will not be able to sustain President Obama’s certain veto, unless new damaging details about the deal emerge. Thus it will become the law of the land – for now.
We also hear rumblings about Iran wanting 19 of their criminals returned from U.S. Federal prisons. This opens the door of course to the U.S. making demands on Iran for 4 known Americans in Iranian prisons. In Bob Levinson’s case, his exact whereabouts are not certain, but the U.S. believes Iran does knows his location and who is responsible for his disappearance. There was an early hint additional Americans, such as CIA agent(s) may be held that the U.S. has not gone public with. Recall that Bob Levinson’s connection to the U.S. government was not acknowledged until December 2013. He disappeared in Iran in March 2007.
There is also an interesting trial balloon that Senate Democrats may filibuster the nuke deal vote, which would allow the deadline for a Congressional vote to simply expire. That would be ‘easy-peasy’ for them, right? The Senators would not have to vote or be on record as ‘for’ or ‘against’ the deal! Since history will probably not be kind to this unleashing of Iran into the world, it may be a good idea not to have one’s name associated with it! The net result, if filibustered and there is no vote, would be the same, but there will be a lot more bitterness and political carnage. It could possibly cement that no significant legislation will be passed in the next one and half years, such as a fix on immigration issues. That in turn means the President’s pen will be more active!
Back to the Iran nuke deal itself, the U.S. will “approve the deal” one way or another with ALL of its provisions. President Obama already has broad authority to waive economic sanctions against Iranian banks, persons, or companies when the laws were originally enacted. So Congress’ hands are tied unless they manage to overcome the veto.
Again, the new Iran nuclear agreement is about to be implemented. And Iran and the world already know there is widespread disapproval of it in the American Congress and general public. But do they know how much Americans hate this process of going around their elected representatives in Congress? I don’t believe they do. The Iran deal was approved in Vienna on July 14 2015 and was immediately submitted by the U.S. first to the UN Security Council in New York. In just one day the UNSC gave its approval with the implementation scheduled for on or about December 20. The full text of deal was submitted to the U.S. Congress by the State Department on a Sunday evening. By noon on Monday, the UN had passed their Resolution to approve the deal!
The U.S. approval of the Iran nuclear deal will essentially be a Presidential decree and could be overturned by a future President. This is NOT the normal way the U.S. conducts foreign policy under the Constitution. Treaties involving other nations require a 2/3’s majority vote in Congress to pass. Treaties therefore tend to hold up over time. The current Administration, however, calculated long ago that 1) this deal in its current form, if presented to Congress as a Treaty, could not pass and 2) by 2017 when they leave office, it will be virtually impossible for the next Administration to line up all of the P5 world powers (that is, the Permanent 5 nations which have a veto at the UNSC: Russia, China, France, the U.K. and U.S.) in order to reinstate sanctions against Iran.
Remember the term “Snap-back sanctions?” It has gone the way of “Anytime, anywhere inspections!” Only very, very bad behavior on the part of Iran, with emphasis on the word “very,” will be a sufficient cause for the UN to reinstate sanctions on Iran.
HISTORICAL FOOTNOTE: This event, the approval of the Iran nuclear deal first by the UN and later by the U.S. Congress, with no real consequences, also marks the OFFICIAL beginning of the end of America projecting its world power. Many around the world celebrate this fact, especially in Iran and other Muslim countries, as well as Russia and China. However, this decline began UNOFFICIALLY when Syria’s Assad used WMD’s on his own citizens and Obama backed away from his often repeated “red lines” which included the “moving around or use of chemical WMD’s.” The Russians stepped in to save Obama’s face and the UN took over the chemical clean up and investigation. The world, and the U.S., moved on to other issues. When the UN issued its report a year or so later, it was inconclusive and held nobody accountable.
Additionally the pathetic responses by the U.S. to Russian sponsored aggression in Ukraine (which may include the shooting down of a commercial airliner) and the rampant rise of ISIL’s reign of terror in Syria and the Levant in the intervening years has only reinforced America’s image (but not the reality) as a weak, fearful and feckless paper tiger. The world is left now without an active, benevolent superpower, a leader of coalitions against evil from the FRONT! The world has become rudderless and out-of-control. It has become a safer place for terrorists and rebels to overthrow governments, often with Iranian manpower, munitions and now, much more money! Is Ban-Ki-Moon of the UN a savior? (No!) Yet the U.S. just yielded its power to him and the UNSC!
The only thing that could reverse this trend is a new and principled U.S. President that believes America is a force for good in the world. If one doesn’t believe that, he or she does not deserve to sit in the Oval Office! The U.S. must be willing to stand up and use the ‘bully pulpit’ and its veto in the UN to protect its own interests and those of key allies, such as Israel. And to speak out against rampant human rights violations, rising terrorism against Yazidis, Christians and Jews in predominantly Muslim nations and what appears to be increasing anti-Semitism around the world.
America needs a leader. The world needs leadership! American leaders want everyone to like us. I’d prefer right now that the world respect us!
Meanwhile President Obama has 17 more months to fiddle with foreign affairs, such as in the Middle East. Having displayed cowardice already, the U.S. may choose to sit back in the UNSC and silently participate in cramming a very bad Palestine-Israel deal, already prepared by the French and Jordanians, down the throats of Israelis. Obama knows how to do it now, completely bypassing Congress.
IN CONCLUSION – As important as the Iran nuclear deal is, we are justifiably concerned for the safety and immediate return of our 4 American hostages. If getting to the point of approving the nuke deal means the ability, finally, to work out the prisoner exchanges on both sides, so be it. For Iran, whether they understand or appreciate it or not, Americans would view such an exchange, if done quickly and not dragged out further, as a very positive step forward in our tense relationship. In fact it cannot progress at all until this step is taken. And for 4 American families, this of course would be the end of a long nightmarish dream and the beginning of their loved ones’ return and restoration to wholeness.
We pray for the quick return of Robert Levinson, Amir Hekmati, Saeed Abedini and Jason Rezaian.
Daniel @ freeallthree . com
The Obama Administration’s statements acknowledging the plight of the 4 brave American hostages in Iran is no longer enough! That alone will not bring them home. In fact, such statements are merely to appease the domestic audience. They mean nothing to Iran’s decision makers, chief among them their Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. All four of the American’s have been wrongly held in unimaginably squalid and dangerous conditions. The very fact they are imprisoned on trumped-up charges is of itself a human rights violation! I have said before that GITMO prisoners today have it far better! The 20-25 Iranian nationals who are in U.S. Federal prisons today for various crimes have it FAR, FAR BETTER! When they are released, it will look like they were spending time at Club Med! But how will that compare to the sick, injured and malnutrition bodies of these 4 American men? They have not received proper and timely health care including essential medications. They have experienced physical and verbal abuse from guards and other prisoners. They have received no visitations from US Embassy staff, the International Red Cross (or Crescent) and even relatives’ visits have been hindered over the years.
The matter of prisoners being held in Iran will not be resolved until the President of the United States and his Secretary of State John Kerry make some hard-nosed, forceful demands of Iran. They had a chance over the past 2 years, but for whatever their reasons, plain and simple, the 4 hostages were NOT a top priority. The Middle-East region responds to strength, forceful words and actions, which goes counter to American desires for a friendly smile and a hand shake which makes for better photo-ops. Watch Putin at a conference – that’s how it should be done among adversaries! He’s not grinning ear to ear chasing everyone down. He stands there with a blank expression until he gets what is needed. Americans want everyone to like us. I’d prefer right now that they respect us! Without a new stronger approach, the 4 Americans will continue to languish in Iran’s most dangerous prisons.
We are pleased to see the increased attention on all 4 of the American hostages, especially since the beginning of 2015, from the national media and DC politicians. But also from thousands of individuals and on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook. Also local radio with family members, TV news and print interviews have all served to increase the American public’s awareness, concern and in many cases outrage over the hostages’ plight. This ‘surge‘ of attention must be maintained until the Obama Administration A C T S to obtain the liberty of all 4 men and brings them home to their families.
Please continue to support these men – stay informed – pray as you are so led – and get involved! Each man has a unique ‘story’ that is posted elsewhere on this website. There are many interesting facts about the men and links to their families’ Facebook and Twitter accounts. The 4 hostages are at risk of further declining health and cannot, should not, be held against their wills in Iran for another month, much less one more year!
FreeAllThree.com adds its voice to encourage Americans to call, write, text, email, tweet or visit their Congressman and Senators to: Demand that the Obama Administration take urgent steps immediately to Free All 4 Americans who are held as hostages and negotiating pawns in Iran today!
Tell your Senators and Congressman to VOTE ‘NO’ on the Iran nuclear deal unless or until all 4 men are freed! Congress has until September 17 to vote this deal up or down.
If you don’t know your Congressional representatives’ names and contact info: an easy-to-use ‘interactive map’ is on the ALCJ.org website. Or follow this link for How to Get Involved with ideas you can use: http://wp.me/P49SUn-oY
Thanks for your concern regarding the 4 Americans held hostage in Iran and for their families who are suffering immensely. They along with us are perplexed why the U.S. has not been able to bring these men home.
NO BILLIONS OF U.S. DOLLARS IN SANCTIONS RELIEF UNLESS OR UNTIL IRAN FREES ALL 4 AMERICANS!
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Email corrections/comments to: Daniel @ FreeAllThree . com (Website URL is www.freeallthree.com)