Trump’s Mendacious Speech on Iran

President Trump, in decertifying the Iran-nuclear deal, trotted out all the tripe about the “world leading sponsor of terrorism” and ties to Al Qaeda. But his new policy is one of dangerous incoherence, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

By Paul R. Pillar

Donald Trump’s speech on Iran is the latest chapter in his struggle to reconcile his overriding impulse to denigrate and destroy any significant achievements of his predecessor with the fact that the most salient of those achievements in foreign policy— the Iran nuclear agreement or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) — is working.

President Donald Trump addresses the nation about his Iran policy on Oct. 13, 2017. (Screenshot from Whitehouse.gov)

It is fulfilling its objective of keeping closed all paths to an Iranian nuclear weapon. As international inspectors have repeatedly determined, Iran is fulfilling its obligations under the agreement.

The struggle for Trump is more difficult on Iran policy than with the Affordable Care Act, where Trump has been using his own executive actions to destroy directly what he has denigrated. However painful his actions on health care are to American citizens who are adversely affected, there is no international multilateral agreement that direct destruction violates. With health care there are no equivalents to the adults, in the person of senior national security officials in his administration, who have been telling him what a bad idea abrogation of the JCPOA would be.

With those adults uncomfortably restraining him, Trump is turning to Congress to square the circle between impulse and reality, to do what the adults are advising him not to do, and to come up with an Iran strategy that is markedly different from what previous administrations have done.

Neither the brief boilerplate in the speech about countering Iran’s “destabilizing activity” and conventional weapons development nor the paper labeled as a “new strategy on Iran” that the White House released shortly before the speech provide such a strategy. Most of the paper could have been written in either of the previous two administrations and probably in any of the previous half dozen.

Compliance Confirmed

The issue of Iranian compliance with the JCPOA is where the dissonance Trump is experiencing, in the face of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s confirmation of that compliance, is most acute. Trump’s speechwriters went to the usual wells that have been tapped by longtime opponents of the JCPOA who have tried to find any possible ground for claiming an Iranian violation.

Hassan Rouhani, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, addresses the general debate of the General Assembly’s seventy-first session. 22 September 2016 (UN Photo)

There was mention of heavy water, without any mention that in the two instances in which Iran’s supply of heavy water bumped up against the agreed-upon limits, Iran promptly did exactly what it is supposed to do under the agreement, which is to sell or otherwise dispose of the excess. Nor was there any mention of how, given Iran’s reconfiguration of its heavy water reactor at Arak and permanent obligation under the JCPOA not to reprocess spent fuel, the heavy water does not represent a proliferation concern.

Trump also asserted that Iran had “intimidated international inspectors,” a line which evidently hinges on some Iranian rhetorical bravado about not giving foreigners the run of their country, and which continues a theme pushed by Nikki Haley that is intended to foster the belief that Iran is denying inspectors access to suspect sites. Neither Trump nor Haley has provided a shred of evidence that there has been any such denial, or that the procedures under JCPOA for inspection of non-declared as well as declared sites are not working well.

The key to reality as far as Iranian compliance is concerned can be found in Trump’s own speech. When he announced that he was withholding certification under the terms of the legislation governing Congressional review, he explicitly said he was doing so on the basis of the clause in the legislation that does not pertain to Iranian compliance but instead refers to whether sanctions relief is still “appropriate and proportionate” to the benefits from the JCPOA. If the administration had genuine grounds for claiming Iranian noncompliance, Trump surely would have invoked the clauses in the law that instead refer to whether Iran is meeting its obligations.

Trump also went to the usual wells in complaining about “flaws” in the JCPOA. Also as usual, the implicit comparison was with a mythical, impossible-to-achieve pact, with no attention given to what the real negotiating possibilities were when the JCPOA was laboriously being hammered out nor what those possibilities are now.

The ‘Sunset’ Clauses

This was true, for example, of what Trump said about the “sunset” provisions. He disregarded the key considerations about these provisions, including how the most important elements of the agreement never expire and how whether such restrictions remain in place years from now will depend more on how all the parties to the JCPOA see their interests years from now (including whether the United States lives up to its commitments) than on the fine print of a past agreement.

President Obama in the Oval Office.

Most important about the sunset clauses is that if the JCPOA were killed, the relevant restrictions on Iranian nuclear activities would vanish right away, not 10 or 20 years from now. This fact makes especially ironic Trump’s closing threat that if Congress doesn’t somehow come up with legislation to his liking, and other parties to the JCPOA do not — contrary to every indication those parties have been giving — bend to whatever it is Trump wants, then “the agreement will be terminated.” If he really is worried about those sunset clauses, then this threat is akin to committing suicide because of fear of death.

The entire speech was filled with what is hoary, well-rehearsed, and well-refuted. This was true of Trump’s efforts to encourage other misconceptions about the JCPOA, including the favorite one among opponents that Iran got its benefits “up front” before fulfilling most of its obligations. In fact, the reverse was true, with Iran having to dismantle centrifuge cascades, dilute enriched uranium, gut its reactor, and take most of the steps it was required to take to close pathways to a nuclear weapon before it got an ounce of additional sanctions relief.

Besides the outright falsehoods, there was hardly a syllable of recognition in the speech that what is one of the most significant nuclear nonproliferation agreements in recent years had accomplished anything at all.

The first portion of Trump’s speech was a play to emotions that consisted of a recitation of bad things Iran had done through the years, dating back to the hostage crisis of almost 40 years ago and featuring terrorist attacks by Iranian-supported groups in the 1980s. One need not disagree that there were indeed many reprehensible Iranian deeds during those years to note the misrepresentations in the speech.

The Al Qaeda Fiction

Trump tried to tie Iran to al-Qaeda (evidently relying on the fact of some al-Qaeda members having been in Iran, in a status that probably was most like house arrest) and its attacks, including the attacks on U.S. embassies in Africa. That sort of linkage has as much validity as George W. Bush alleging an “alliance” between the Iraqi regime and al-Qaeda as one of the selling points for launching the Iraq War.

President George W. Bush pauses for applause during his State of the Union Address on Jan. 28, 2003, when he made a fraudulent case for invading Iraq. Seated behind him are Vice President Dick Cheney and House Speaker Dennis Hastert. (White House photo)

Missing from Trump’s bill of historical particulars about Iranian conduct was any sense of the possibility or desirability of regimes changing their conduct — partly through evolution of their own perception of self-interest and partly through inducements, which is what the JCPOA is all about in keeping Iran from building nuclear weapons. Also missing was any reference to the responsibility of other players for much of the mayhem involved (as with the Saudi-led, U.S.-supported war in Yemen).

Missing as well was any genuine connection between all of the recited reasons to dislike Iran and a rationale for Trump undermining the JCPOA. Trump offered the usual assertions about unfrozen assets that Iran “could use to fund terrorism” while offering no reason to believe that the level of what is unfrozen has anything to do with the level of Iran’s activity outside its borders.

Trump even used the chestnut about a payment by the Obama administration to Iran in the form of pallets of cash — without mentioning, of course, that this payment was settlement of an old claim involving aircraft that Iran under the shah had ordered but the United States never delivered, and that cash was used because Iran was still frozen out of Western banking systems.

Although Trump claimed to be offering an entire new strategy on Iran and not just making a statement about the JCPOA, something else that was missing was any reason to believe that his administration has new and better ideas to do anything about non-nuclear Iranian actions, whether this involves missiles, terrorism, or anything else.

Neither in this speech nor on other occasions has Trump shown any awareness of the need to look at the reasons the other state is doing what it is doing, how this fits in with what other states are doing, and what incentives would be required to elicit any changes.

Trump referred repeatedly in his speech to the “Iranian dictatorship.” There was no hint of recognition that the Iranian regime is currently one of the more democratic ones in the Middle East (and much more so than some other regimes in the region that Trump prefers to associate with). There was no acknowledgement that the JCPOA was negotiated with the government of a popularly elected Iranian president who won re-election over hard-line opposition partly because of the promise of better relations, including economic relations, with the West under the JCPOA.

The misrepresentations in the speech were too numerous to catalog entirely, but one of the biggest was Trump’s assertion that “the previous administration lifted sanctions just before what would have been the complete collapse of the regime.” There is no evidence whatsoever that the Iranian regime was on the brink of any such collapse.

Piling on more and more sanctions in the absence of engagement and diplomacy had merely seen the spinning of more and more centrifuges enriching uranium. This line in the speech points to the vacuity of what Trump is offering for a policy toward Iran: endless hostility and confrontation, and with it the risk of war, sustained by a baseless hope of regime change — a hope that has brought costs and chaos that the United States knows all too well.

Paul R. Pillar, in his 28 years at the Central Intelligence Agency, rose to be one of the agency’s top analysts. He is author most recently of Why America Misunderstands the World. (This article first appeared as a blog post at The National Interest’s Web site. Reprinted with author’s permission.)

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47 comments for “Trump’s Mendacious Speech on Iran

  1. kntl tlt
    October 16, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    Why is Trump being so irrational? Why does the whole Iran thing not make any sense? It is because something is missing from the calculus. That thing is Israel’s “irresistible pressure” on the three branches of the US government and the Zionist propoganda in the guise of free press. Let us face it we have a “wag the dog” situation.

  2. October 15, 2017 at 1:19 pm

    The danger here is that Trump and the other psycopaths that surround him will actually talk themselves into war with Korea and Iran. The huge danger for the US is it´s fatal flaw, and that is groupthink. Every thing from Thinktanks, The White House, to the Senate, Congress and the MSM like Lemmings, join in a collective race for the cliff. So far the US has escaped the worse case scenarios of this fatal flaw, but now they are flirting with war on North Korea, Iran, China and Russia, There will be no survivors.(Fear for the survival of the dollar as the reserve currency of the world may be the driving force behind this collective insanity and ceasless war talk.)

    I think the major problem with the flaw is that Americans and Israelis really do believe that they are God´s chosen people and that they will be spared if nuclear war breaks out. As one Russian General observed ” Do they actually think that they are immune'”. The answer in a word is yes. But that luminous cloud they see Jesus returning on will be massivly radio active and doom them all. too late then for second thoughts.

  3. October 15, 2017 at 12:13 am

    The embarrassing thing to my mind is the appearance that the Iranian Government tells the truth whilst the US Government lies repeatedly.

    It seems to be that the duties of observant Muslims prevent equivocation.

    And to lean over backwards for America, it may be that so many groups and individuals in Washington DC (and on myriad overseas bases) can initiate action that no-one knows what the national response to anything will be.

    This jostling for power by President, legislators, civil servants, spooks and generals is going to bring the country down. It may be democratic but its unpredictable and its not the way to keep allies

  4. Profecto
    October 14, 2017 at 11:13 pm

    Lots of really thoughtful comments on this article and a fair consensus on the source of the problem. But NOTHING will change until the MSM is stopped or they start employing and featuring real journalists. OR until sites like Consortium News have more readers than the MSM.

  5. Shirley Given
    October 14, 2017 at 9:51 am

    Love Consortium

  6. GMC
    October 14, 2017 at 8:12 am

    The longer Trump stays in office, the more that ” Russia hacked the election for Trump” gets to be the laughing stock of the world. Russia, with its peaceful era agenda for prosperity and sovereign progress for all, wouldn’t back a Israel puppet that ends up looking like a Mafia boss from NY, NY. anymore than they would the Bolsheviks and/or Neo Nazi’s from AmeriKraine. The very last thing on Earth the American people needed was Bush, Obama and Trump as their Puppet Leaders.

  7. dave
    October 14, 2017 at 2:00 am

    unsaid by all of the above is the simple fact that trumps iran speech was probably written itself by satanyahu and just proves he is just another weak pitiful puppet of the our masters from tel aviv, or is it jerusalem now. this is NOT any longer the united states of america. it is more appropriately the zionist states of america. so get ready for WWlll folks!

  8. October 13, 2017 at 10:27 pm

    IMO blaming trump is myopic.

    IMO Obama signed the agreement with Iran only to buy time because the Syrian conflict was taking longer than expected.

    Proof? Obama was a sly front man as made clear by Libya, Ukraine, Syria, and more.

    “Don’t do stupid stuff” = Don’t do anything that will might make US public wake up.

    Trump is the other side of the coin. Obama was sainted by the media / Trump is a lightening rod.

    USA political system doesn’t allow for election of REAL populists leaders.

    • david
      October 14, 2017 at 7:11 am

      do you really think Obama’s operation got Bin Ladin?

    • mark
      October 14, 2017 at 6:37 pm

      Exactly right. For all his crude bluster and buffoonery, Trump is an irrelevance. Replacing him with someone else is like replacing Whammo Soap Powder with Whizzo Soap Powder.

  9. October 13, 2017 at 9:50 pm

    I cannot believe that any foreign policy decisions are coming out of either Trump’s brain or Nikki Haley’s. I just don’t think either one is other than a mouthpiece for the neocons. To undo the JCPOA is sheer lunacy, but after how many months of this Trump show i am not surprised at more lunacy. Obama took flak for the JCPOA but saw it through, to his credit.

    But the Israel lobby always prevails in the US. I was rereading parts of Mearsheimer and Walt’s 2007 book “The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy”. The neocons would be getting their way in other policy decisions had Clinton prevailed, because she, too, believes that “whatever Israel wants, Israel gets”. And Netanyahu did not like the Iran deal.

    • Joe Tedesky
      October 14, 2017 at 12:55 am

      You are right Jessica, no matter how you slice it, it always comes out to be AIPAC & Bibi. America has no foreign policy Israel does. Let’s hope Miko Peled rises, and his influence takes hold. Then let’s hope the USA gets it’s self together. Joe

      • mark
        October 14, 2017 at 6:19 pm

        It will take a disastrous war on the scale of WW2 to bring about any change. Nothing is going to change otherwise.

  10. alley cat
    October 13, 2017 at 8:59 pm

    The imaginary Iranian nuclear weapons program was never more than a pretext to attack Iran. Consequently, the Zionists and neocons hate the JCPOA because it deprives them of their phony pretext for war.

    Solution: use lies and fabrications to scupper the treaty, and then once again proclaim that war is the only way to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

    Decertification is just one more step on the neocon road to Moscow (which runs through Damascus and Tehran).

  11. Annie
    October 13, 2017 at 8:40 pm

    If you read Trump’s speech on Iran at times it was almost laughable, since one would think he was often talking about us. He refers to Iran as a rogue regime, while we have attacked countries that were no threat to us, a breech of international law, nor did he mention that Iran never initiated a war in it’s long history. He claims they’re under a radical regime that seized power in 1979, not mentioning they ousted the Shah we installed, after creating a coup that ousted a democratically elected Mohammad Mosaddegh. He goes on to talk about Iranians killing Americans, but no mention of our assistance in the Iraq/Iran war where we supplied Iraq, who initiated the war, with intelligence and economic aid. He can say with a straight face they are the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, and fueled sectarian violence in Iraq, the one we invaded, and started vicious civil wars in Yemen and Syria. Didn’t mention how important they have been in going after ISIS, or that we initiated the war in Syria feeding weapons to al Nusra, or that we are supplying the Saudi’s with millions in weapons that are used to starve and kill off a population. It goes on like that. I hate when people single out Trump when the culprit is the USA, since Trump is simply now it’s talking head.

    • Joe Tedesky
      October 13, 2017 at 8:48 pm

      You are right Annie, the Hypocrisy of Trump’s speech was stunning. I’m glad you captured his outrageous accusations of his slanted misplaced evil against Iran with your rebuttal of Trump’s misleading words. Good comment. Joe

      • Gregory Herr
        October 13, 2017 at 11:24 pm

        I second Joe’s appreciation Annie. The treachery of the Iraq/Iran war “assistance” involved chemical weapons as well. As Realist well noted above, the hypocrisy is breathtaking.

    • kntl tlt
      October 16, 2017 at 3:02 pm

      Zionist attack their opposition with what they themselves are and are doing. Our goverment is acting more and more like the Zionist Likudest Israeli government because it is controlled by them. Look at how many unelected Zionist handlers are around the President. Look at how many zionist are in the high offices of our government. Even the Supreme Court is one vote from a zionist majority. Zionists are grossly over represented. Nothing new as far as history is concerned and neither is America’s trajectory for that matter.

  12. Realist
    October 13, 2017 at 7:15 pm

    I’ve got news for Donald ben Yahoo, Iran is not the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism. That role would be played by the United States government… in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Pakistan, Ukraine… and you might say all along the western frontier of Russia where brigades are being deployed, nuclear-tipped missiles are being aimed, and the most inflammatory rhetoric is being directed at the only other country that can destroy the world if we attack them. Iran can be villainized and threatened with American aggression precisely because it does not have nuclear weapons like North Korea does. What other country has Iran attacked with “terrorists?” Is Washington counting the regular army troops that Iran has loaned to Syria to defend itself against the ISIS, al Nusra, al Qaeda, Daesh, or whatever the American-sponsored terrorists are calling themselves today? The hypocrisy, projection and inverse representation of reality by Washington is absolutely breathtaking. The only people it fools are its own brainwashed citizens. And, Donald, you sure dazzled us again with your “art of the deal,” the bait and switch you pulled in the election is one for the history books. Yeah, you sure turned out to be the “peace candidate.” The peace comes when Israel rules the planet. They already rule America.

    • Joe Tedesky
      October 13, 2017 at 8:40 pm

      Your description is said well, and what Trump is doing, is he’s only ramping it up and proving to the world that the USA is a corrupted country. The rest of earths humanity isn’t stupid, they know who’s behind the USA. The rest of the world can also clearly see, that America who was already a warmongering bad guy and wasn’t so innocent that with Emperor Trump in charge of the Great America, that now our sweet Homeland has finally gone over the edge with a super huge millstone around it’s neck.

      Just like the Paris Climate Accords, the Europeans will stay with this JCPOA with Iran, and ignore the USA. I read where Moon Jai in the newly elected President of S Korea isn’t doing to well, since Jai in looks to some of his countrymen to be acquiescing too much to Washington. In fact I’d mention more hot spots, but I don’t feel like looking up all the various countries spelling of their name. The question will come down to; will the U.S. be able to form a coalition, and be trusted to stand by a decent treaty? Or will the U.S. go it alone unilaterally? I doubt it, since Trump is doing everything humanly possible to piss every nation off with his arrogance, and his vindictive nature that Trump will create many friends in the international community.

      Trump may sell in America’s Fly Over Country but the rest of the planet isn’t buying it. Joe

  13. October 13, 2017 at 7:15 pm

    Donald Trump’s warmongering words, Machiavellian actions and false “spirituality” (frequent references to “our” God) represent a level of danger for humanity perhaps unprecedented in history. The question becomes: “Can a sufficient combined,genuinely moral and spiritual force of wise men and women across the Earth be gathered to prevent world war?”

    The answer is absolutely yes, because inside each human being is the divine essence of the one true, ultimate, and omnipotent reality of everything that exists. Peace is guaranteed through recognition of the sacred in all people, all life, and all things.

  14. mike k
    October 13, 2017 at 6:56 pm

    Trump is a disgusting liar and a fool. Those who prefer to think this man is not a danger to mankind are seriously deluded. Getting him out of office is the primary consideration for those trying to save our species from extinction. He is a clear and present danger to all life on this planet.

    • BobS
      October 13, 2017 at 7:37 pm

      Keeping him out of office would have been the easier option.
      Sadly, these comment sections are filled with what were- and are- effectively his enablers.
      Maybe someday they’ll get the unicorn they’re wishing for when they cast their ballot.

      • Profecto
        October 13, 2017 at 8:36 pm

        If Trump hadn’t won, what would Hillary have done? (I don’t live in the US, so not an enabler or otherwise.)

        • BobS
          October 13, 2017 at 9:05 pm

          I know a few things she wouldn’t have done.
          Within the context of this article, she wouldn’t have abrogated the JCPOA.
          Nor would she be acting like an impulsive adolescent playing a game of nuclear brinksmanship with North Korea.
          I’m guessing a non-US citizen would find some comfort in both those things, inasmuch as you likely live even closer to the Persian Gulf or the Korean Peninsula.
          US citizens who give a shit about labor rights/voting rights/police empowerment/net neutrality/public lands/global warming, etc. might be comforted by a Supreme Court without Neil Gorsuch, a Justice Department without Jefferson Sessions, an FCC without Ajit Pai, an Interior Department without Ryan Zinke, or an E.P.A without Scott Pruitt.
          US citizens of color might feel better about things going forward without a voting commission headed by Kris Kobach.
          US citizens in Puerto Rico might feel a little better about their future if their president hadn’t already grown bored and irritated with what he thinks is 2 weeks of freeloading.

          • Themisticles
            October 13, 2017 at 9:35 pm

            Maybe she would have done the same but with a different style…

          • Constantine
            October 13, 2017 at 9:45 pm

            Hillary’s outfit was replete with with bloodthirsty neocons, corrupt corporate lobbyists and western supremacists who are just as bad as those in the Trump team, if not worse. It’s one thing to advocate support for a third party candidate such as Jill Stein. But it takes a staggering level of cognitive dissonance to believe that this humanoid that destroyed entire countries and ruined millions, all the while aligning with the most powerful vested, corporate interests of the US empire, would be a better choice.

            As it happens, it was this retarded mentality that compelled so many progressives so called to grovel behind this disgusting neoliberal right-winger, instead of backing actual progressive candidates. I guess this is the difference between true progressives and lame regressives.

          • BobS
            October 13, 2017 at 10:01 pm

            “Hillary’s outfit was replete with with bloodthirsty neocons, corrupt corporate lobbyists and western supremacists…”
            Agreed.

            “…who are just as bad as those in the Trump team, if not worse”
            Whatever makes you feel better about electing Trump…and Gorsuch, and Pai, and Sessions, et al.

          • Gregory Herr
            October 13, 2017 at 11:09 pm

            How Clinton would have specifically handled certification of the JCPOA is neither here nor there. Forget the “style”, her “substance” would have been along the line of thinking outlined in “Which Path to Persia?”. See http://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2011/05/which-path-to-persia-redux.html
            Trump is sadly, and likely unwittingly, following that path.

            In office or out, Clinton is part of the “neoliberal” team mascoted by Obama who act like impulsive adolescents playing games of nuclear brinksmanship with Russia. The situation in Syria vis-a-vis Russia would likely have been more confrontational from the get-go, posing serious dangers that still could come to the fore under Trump.

            We get it Bob…Trump is a real sh** and his Administration and the Republicans pose some problems and risks. There wasn’t much of a choice, but the (at least) possibility of turning towards a more reasonable approach toward Russia and away from the treacherous project that the attempted ruination of Syria is part of, was worth a look. And besides, in terms of social “progress”, a fair and just civil society, economics, the “security state”, and other measures…I wouldn’t be so sure that Clinton over Trump is much of a difference.

          • Joe Tedesky
            October 14, 2017 at 12:58 am

            We should all get on the same team.

      • GM
        October 14, 2017 at 2:12 am

        Oh, you mean Hiilaroids? Agreed.

    • mark
      October 14, 2017 at 6:14 pm

      You are right in saying Trump is a disgusting liar.
      You are wrong in saying getting him out of office is the primary consideration.
      That is just charging up a blind alley.
      The primary consideration is getting rid of the system that produces the Trumps, the Clintons, the Bushes.
      Trump doesn’t matter.
      If he was shot dead near some grassy knoll the day after tomorrow, he would just be replaced with another trained monkey to serve the interests of Israel and the Deep State.
      Whether the trained monkey is called Trump, or Clinton, or something else, may be of some importance to Trump or Clinton or whoever. It’s a matter of supreme indifference to everybody else.,

  15. Drew Hunkins
    October 13, 2017 at 5:48 pm

    The Zio-Saudi Terror Network’s counter attack just won a decisive battle today. Trump’s move to decertify the Iran nuke deal is a direct gift to the unstable war criminal, Netanyahu.

    All, all of the vilification towards Iran germinates from the Zio-Saudi Terror Network and their lapdogs in the mainstream media.

    Iran hasn’t attacked another nation-state in hundreds of years. It routinely requests cordial relations with Washington, London and the rest of the world. The Persian state is a much, much older civilization than the one the United States purports to have, which is built on business hustling, exploitation, debt consumption, and work ’till you die. Meanwhile, the Israeli culture is built on Islamophobia, illegal land grabs, paranoia, international organized crime, and billions of dollars in Washington subsidies.

    If a martian were to land on earth tomorrow and witness the breathtaking hypocrisy of an Israel, with around 100 nuke weapons, versus the campaign of calumny directed toward an Iran, which doesn’t have a single nuke and is using nuke power for peaceful energy purposes, that martian would think earth had gone insane.

    The Iran nuke deal was one of the very few positive achievements of the Obama regime. Now it’s future is in serious doubt as the rest of the international community reacts with uneasy irritation towards a Washington that’s clearly lost its marbles as it lies in bed with the violent, lunatic state of Israel and the irrational Saudi monarchy.

    • Joe Tedesky
      October 13, 2017 at 8:16 pm

      Well said Drew.

      • October 14, 2017 at 6:56 am

        OUT OF FOCUS?

        The Pilger article and those of many other commentaries hinge
        on the nuclear and technical aspects of the JCPOA.

        I never believed that any “nuke deal” would take place and
        pointed this out many times in these spaces. It did happen.
        The US was never negotiating “in good faith”.

        What the US and Israel and others focus on is “the spirit”.
        “The spirit” is all that is left of the dreams of the destruction
        of Iran . Instead of the unquestionned
        dominance of the US and Israel of the Middle East and the
        World are falling to pieces. Syria did not self-destruict.

        Economically Iran is now the object of intense desire
        of corporations from the core nations. An example
        is Renault’s plans to manufacture in Iran soon. This
        is itself to high-salaried Israel whose business prospects
        are in many cases precarious.

        The version of “outsourcing” used for decades in
        the US, FDI (Foreign Direct Investing—“oursourcing),
        has been a boon for the wealthy, for elite investors. The
        fortunes made by manufacturers abroad must be
        “recycled” and invested in the US. Traditionally,
        this has been in US Treasury Bonds build on “paper”,
        nowadays no paper is involved, just an internet
        entry.

        Not many troubled coal mines have been reborn out
        of fortunes made off of (mostly tax free) T Bonds.
        Coal miners have not been re-employed
        at high wages. Steel mills have not been reopened
        in the US rust belt.

        The income from the T Bonds has gone to pay for defense,
        social security etc.

        The current President of France was formerly an investment
        banker. I believe he worked for Rothschilds but am unsure
        of the specifics of his early career. He has been there,
        done that. He know the global speculation economy
        all too well.

        The “spirit”?? The spirit has always been that the US and
        Israel retain and expand their hegemony in perpetuity.
        It seems like this “spirit” will not materialize except as
        a sugar plum fantasy dancing in the heads.

        For more detailed discussion, see selected chapters
        of Jack Rasmus:SYSTEMIC FRAGILITY IN THE GLOBAL
        ECONO (Clariton Press, 2016).

        —Peter Loeb, Boston, MA, USA

        ,

        • October 14, 2017 at 7:09 am

          ATROCIOUS ERROR—-MEA CULPA

          My comment should have referred to the article by Paul R.
          Pillar. Apologies to Mr. Pilger wherever you are!! –Peter Loeb

          • Joe Tedesky
            October 14, 2017 at 7:22 am

            At least Peter you are honest, and you pay attention to details, but your honor is upheld since you didn’t blame spellcheck. Joe

        • Joe Tedesky
          October 14, 2017 at 7:19 am

          Thanks Peter for the very informative, and important comment. I don’t think you are totally a lone to your not having faith in the U.S. on the JCPOA business, but there was always that hope it would stay binding. The U.S. while to some was always doubtful of it being true to it’s word was the weak link, but you must admit that with the way Trump presented this decertification it was highly insulting to Iran. What I saw was an arrogant narcissistic man prove to the world how America will never bury the hatchet when it comes to Iran, and that this ill mannered real estate mogul obeys the dictates of another country altogether and pays no attention to his American citizens.

          You got it right Peter. Joe

        • LJ
          October 14, 2017 at 6:07 pm

          Relax Persia has been around a while. The Think Tank shits do not understand the Shia , the Twelvers. They cannot be occupied by Capitalism. Won’t happen. Our Empire has feet of clay. This week China established a currency exchange yuan to ruble and announced that the Saudis will take payment in rubles and yuan from now on., We aren’t winning. We are losing. Turkey is falling out of NATO and the EU sees that their interests are deviating from US interests especially regarding the Paris accords and Nord Stream II. Trump is a bore and there is no power in the State Department. Trump is hurting our government every day just being there. He will have to be forced from office sooner or later. The Republicans will eventually have to slit their wrists and lay back and relax in the tub.. Importantly despite the show Koreans and Chinese will not accept US domination in the future if we go through with this Holocaust. The Japanese won’t even go there. The problem is weakness of leaders in the world because of corruption and US dollars everywhere. In all the leader’s secret bank accounts and in their family’s and friends vacation plans and lifestyles.. That is why Trump is President in the first place, the next President or the one after could be the first Emperor of the World but not this half wit.

    • Taras 77
      October 13, 2017 at 8:44 pm

      Nailed it-well written!

      • Dave P.
        October 14, 2017 at 12:12 pm

        Yes. I agree. Drew Hunkins and Peter Loeb have nailed it in these very well written comments as you said. It is not a good news for ME countries – Syria, Iraq – and Iran.

    • Curious
      October 14, 2017 at 3:02 am

      Good on you mate!, as the Aussies would say. You mentioned many issues we all question in our own research. One can only assume Bibi is still clapping in agreement for the Iran bashing even though all the facts and history are wrong in Trumps hateful twisted brain.
      I do wonder, and have not found a good reference yet, as to who holds the Iranian money and assets that were frozen. Who, or what entity is benefiting off of the stolen money from Iran? Someone must be nervous about returning what is owed to Iran, and this is seldom stated.
      Your point about the nukes in Israel vs Iran is one I’ve often mentioned, but how many people know this? I suppose there is hardly a literate person anymore in the US who could challenge and expose Israel for the criminals they are. In addition to Israels treatment of the Palestinians, their desire to bomb Iran is just as important as “mowing the lawn”.The irony, and I think history will agree, is that Israel has been crying bitter tears for 70 years over the deaths in WW2. As shameful and disgraceful as these past events were, they have also been embedded in the Hollywood industry, print and video media to push their historical inequities for ever and ever ad infinitude. Now Israel wants the US (not the first time) to do the dirty work as they sit and pretend to care.
      I know there are some people reenacting the US civil war, but this doesn’t seem the equal of todays conflicts and Israels hold on history. Scan a cable guide and it’s hard to find a program not embellishing the holocaust or the Nazis themselves.The Nazies were always brought front and center, even in something as non-warlike as Indian Jones, for example.
      The unfortunate result of this effort, that is, this desire to keep the holocaust in current Hollywood movies & with print media, revenant in the world can now be seen in a newer context. Israel has become the barbarians and land grabbers in their domain, just as the worst of the worst have done before them. Our congress doesn’t make any waves since they are beholden to AIPAC as well as many other people with large accounts zeroing in on how special Israel is. Those who read this site are familiar with the games Israel plays. Also, since they havw perpetuated this Hitler ¨Ubermensch role”’Israel has almost created ‘on there own’ a mythical character. The role of Hitler would have died out 40 years ago if it were not for Israel. Now we see the symbols in Ukraine, and elsewhere of people giving the Nazi salute.
      I have to mention, much of what we are seeing now in our youth, and the ‘haters’ in many parts of the world would never have had an embryo were it not for Israelite lies. We can also thank Israel for this symbol of hatred in current times. Thank you Israel for playing the sympathy card for more than 70 years. By not closing this chapter and creating a new one, we now have Nazi sympathizers dragged out of history without any proper context outside of hate. I do believe history will show that Israel has been one of the greatest forces of hate the younger generation learns about. The younger student doesn’t learn how to make peace, but rather how to make conflict and they have a golden idol for this hate brought on by Israels unwillingness to forgive , forget, and to make peace with their neighbors (stolen land neighbors), and in Obamas earlier terminology. to look forward past the land grabs and the lust for the Golan Heights. If it’s possible to inflate ones own own plastic mythical doll to appease and play the victim card for 70+ years while bilking the US taxpayers for billions and billions per year, the Israelies have succeeded. Guilt and victimhood seems very marketable for the Zionists.

      • Larco Marco
        October 14, 2017 at 4:39 pm

        The Zionists’ Holocaust capital was paid out (and then some) with the hours-long strafing of the USS Liberty 50 years ago. How are they enableed to claim an ever-increasing indebtedness from Congress, Media, Deep Institutions, et al???

        • mark
          October 14, 2017 at 6:07 pm

          1. Bribery. 2. Blackmail.

    • Kelli
      October 14, 2017 at 1:40 pm

      Well said. And since AIPAC owns the US Congress, sanctions are inevitable, but would easily reveal the intentions of, not Trump, but of Bibi Netanyahu

    • rosemerry
      October 14, 2017 at 4:08 pm

      Bingo!!

    • Abe
      October 14, 2017 at 7:06 pm

      The real Trump: AIPAC in March 2016

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZGgMJ3QDAQ

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