The Iran Lobby must be sweating the protests in Iran and their impact on Trump administration’s views on whether to kill the Iran nuclear deal. In many ways one of the key things holding the Trump administration back from killing the deal outright is how to manage the aftermath with mullahs desperate to hold onto power who may choose bloody violence to instead of diplomacy or giving up their hold on power.
Deciding to kill the nuclear deal is not a knee-jerk reaction, nor should it be done without an end game in place to help manage some sort of peaceful regime change and transition from theological dictatorship to peaceful democracy.
The mullahs have already evidenced their willingness to use brute force and mass murder to hold onto power. They demonstrated it after the disputed 2009 elections and they showed it again this year with the populist movement that grew from deep dissatisfaction among ordinary Iranians over their impoverished state of living.
Now the mullahs are faced with threats on multiple fronts, not the least of which is a new U.S. administration largely skeptical of them and their false promises.
What have the mullahs done?
They’ve put the Iran lobby into overdrive to defend the nuclear deal and throw as much mud as possible at President Donald Trump.
Leading the charge has been Trita Parsi of the National Iranian American Council, but he has been joined by Seyed Hossein Mousavian, a former Iranian regime nuclear official who relocated to a position at Princeton University refashioning himself as a Middle East security expert/
While Parsi has been busy shooting off editorials at a rapid clip, Mousavian joined him in the literary parade with a recent commentary in Reuters.
Like Parsi, Mousavian trots out the usual defense of the nuclear deal as being set on a foundation of the “highest standards on nuclear transparency and inspections ever negotiated,” but there is a yawning chasm between reality and fantasy.
He also echoes almost verbatim Parsi’s key messages on the deal’s terms being only temporary after which Iran would fall under safeguards from the International Atomic Energy Agency.
He of course neglects to mention that the IAEA failed to detect Iran’s clandestine nuclear development program in the first place. Similarly, he fails to mention how the IAEA failed to halt North Korea’s march to nuclearization and that both Iran and North Korea could and did opt to throw inspectors out and disable cameras and monitoring equipment.
What is to stop Iran from doing the same thing now? Harsh language? The reality is nothing.
Mousavian also criticizes the Trump administration’s effort to link Iran’s ballistic missile program to nuclear sanctions as well as question whether or not the mullahs should ever possess the right to develop nuclear technology.
While Mousavian claims Iran has a “sovereign right” to do so, he ignores the broader and more strategic question being raised by President Trump: Why does a violent, religiously-governed dictatorship ever need a nuclear program?
Iran has always claimed its nuclear program is peaceful and designed for energy development, but those claims ring hollow given the economic conditions in Iran and the global energy map in which nuclear power is rapidly becoming obsolete. In the U.S. alone, the nuclear power industry has been decimated by renewable energy sources, the low cost and abundance of natural gas and the conversion of industries to solar and off-peak battery storage have made it irrelevant.
More importantly, the maniacal nature of the mullahs’ governance makes development of nuclear power an idiotic choice for any nation to allow. Mousavian claims peaceful intent but the true intentions of the regime have been clearly demonstrated and that is to develop a militarized nuclear capability so it can dominate its neighbors, especially chief rival Saudi Arabia.
Mousavian grasps at straws when he claims the killing of the nuclear deal will only spread global distrust of the U.S. and make any deal with North Korea impossible.
With all due respect, that is an idiotic statement to make. No one on the planet sincerely believes that North Korea’s meglo-maniacal leader has any intention of real negotiations with the West over his nuclear toy kit.
The Iranian regime has worked diligently to undermine the nuclear deal right from the start by eradicating all traces of its nuclear work at suspected sites before inspection, restricting access by inspectors from any military sites, only allowing collections of soil samples by regime officials and not dismantling centrifuges that refine uranium.
More worrisome, Mousavian never takes up the issue of the Islamic dictatorship itself. It is cruel, barbaric and actively engaged in supporting terrorism and involved in wars and insurgencies in three countries.
If a government acts in a way that is openly hostile to its neighbors and places little value on the lives of its own people—even murdering them on a mass scale for political disobedience—why on earth would we ever allow them to possess a capability to develop a weapon of mass destruction?
The greatest historical lesson parallel to Iran is Nazi Germany. If Hitler’s Germany raced to develop a nuclear capability prior to World War II, we might all be living an episode of the “Man in the High Castle” on Netflix given how the West tried to appease Hitler by giving away Czechoslovakia, Austria and the Sudetenland.
Following the same approach to Iran and its bloodthirsty leaders such as Ali Khamenei is the same kind of lunacy that plunged the world into a global war that lasted six years.
Mousavian clinches the irony trophy when he writes:
“Rather than challenging his predecessor’s legacy Trump should endeavor to use it as a model to bolster multilateral diplomacy and resolve crises in places such as Yemen, Syria, and Afghanistan. Today more than ever, the world needs a balanced and rational White House to promote peace and security rather than to flout international norms.”
Mousavian mentions conflicts that Iran is directly responsible for starting and expanding. It is not the White House that needs to be balanced and rational, but rather it is Tehran that needs to be dragged kicking a screaming into normalcy and peace.