The nuclear agreement signed by the P5 +1 nations (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, including the United States, plus Germany) and Iran is disastrous. It will provide nuclear weapons and hundreds of billions of dollars to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his radical Islamic Shia Iranian regime.
Everything in the past two years has pointed to precisely such a deal which leaves Iran with its nuclear weapons program and infrastructure intact, while additionally shredding the international sanctions regime upon Tehran and infusing its economy with hundreds of billions of dollars in unfreezing of assets and sanctions relief.
Moreover, this deal will terminate personal sanctions against senior Iranian military commanders who have been sanctioned for their responsibility in the murder hundreds of Americans in Iraq.
Two years ago, the Iranian economy was collapsing under the weight of sanctions. President Obama could have intensified pressure and international resolve to compel Iran to relinquish its nuclear program. Instead, he preemptively relieved the pressure on Iran by easing sanctions which enabled Iran to withstand every demand. As a result, we now stand on the precipice of an era of nuclear terror.
Because this agreement does not dismantle any element of Iran’s nuclear weapons infrastructure. It also contradicts every substantive assurance President Obama gave on stopping Iran becoming a nuclear power.
His demand that Iran dismantle its thousands of centrifuges? –– dropped.
His demand that Iran shutter its plutonium facility at Arak? –– dropped.
His demand that Iran shutter its underground nuclear facility at Fordow? –– dropped.
His demand that Iran accept free, unfettered and unannounced inspections of all of its nuclear facilities? –– dropped.
His demand that Iran fully account for the military dimensions of its past clandestine nuclear research and development programs? –– dropped.
His insistence that non-nuclear sanctions imposed on Iran for its role in international terrorism and abuses of human rights remain firmly in place? –– dropped. Now President Obama redefines these as essentially nuclear-related in order to lift them. Additionally, arms embargoes on Iran will be lifted after five years.
Worse, it is illusory that sanctions can be ‘snapped back’ if Iran violates this agreement. The U.S. will not make that determination –– instead, a committee that includes Iran will. Can one imagine Russia and China, which stand to gain huge economic advantages from the easing of sanctions, agreeing to reimpose them because the U.S. is concerned?
Recently, Iran attempted to evade sanctions and import a shipment of nuclear compressors compatible with its nuclear program. It also attempted to procure nuclear material through black-listed firms. That is what Iran does now, before an agreement and when it is still under sanctions. Who believes that Iran will be more law-abiding and careful once sanctions have been lifted?
Tehran is already the biggest supporter and sponsor of radical Islamic terrorism. This deal will free up some $150 billion in frozen Iranian assets and will also provide Iran with tens of billions of dollars in sanctions relief each year.
Only last month, Iran gave Hamas tens of millions of dollars and provided Hezbollah tens of thousands of missiles to use against Israel. Now, both of these terror groups, committed to Israel’s destruction and the the murder of Jews, can be expected to receive literally tens of thousands of new missiles to target Israel in the months and years ahead.
Disturbingly, President Obama proceeded with this deal in full knowledge of Tehran’s unaltered hatred. Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Hasan Rouhani have been leading rallies calling for death to America and Israel. Billboards across Iran proclaim ‘Death to America.’ Iranian television regularly broadcasts simulations of nuclear attacks on Israel and strikes upon U.S. aircraft carriers.
But now we have a deal. If Iran abides by it and no-one acts to stop it, Iran will become a nuclear power, by agreement, in some 13 years. If it cheats, of course, it could be much sooner.
Morton A. Klein is National President of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA). Dr. Daniel Mandel is Director of the ZOA’ s Center for Middle East Policy.