- - Thursday, September 10, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

As the debate on the Iranian Agreement has unfolded in the Congress, several very significant facts have emerged. From Rep. Mike Pompeo, Kansas Republican, and highly respected constitutional lawyer David Rivkin, we’ve learned that President Obama has yet to deliver to the Congress all the documents required by the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act.

Notably missing is the agreement between the government of Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), regarding how the inspections that are essential to detecting any Iranian violations will be carried out. Surely the contents of this document are essential to our ability to judge whether Iran has violated the agreement. Secretary of State John Kerry has acknowledged that he doesn’t know what is in that secret agreement. How can that be? No rational leader could agree to abide by the terms of a verification agreement he has not even read.

We’ve also learned from Iranian officials that Iran intends to resume the purchase of any military hardware it wishes and to continue work on its ballistic missile program. Of course we’ve known from the outset of negotiations that we would not even try to curtail Iran’s support for terrorism, or its support for the Assad regime in Syria, or its effort to subvert, coopt and control the government of Iraq.

From recent polling of a cross-section of Americans, we also know that only 25 percent of the American people support the agreement and that a bipartisan majority of both Chambers of Congress oppose it. We also know that the United Nations intends to lift its non-nuclear sanctions on Iran and thus enable Iran to again use the SWIFT global banking system to invite foreign investment into the country and to resume the export of oil and gas to the global market.

Still, notwithstanding these compelling reasons to reject the agreement, the president insists that its approval serves American interests. Bear in mind that this is a country that is responsible for the death of almost 300 Americans in Lebanon, at least double that number in Iraq, a government that has sworn enduring hostility toward “the Great Satan” (as we are termed), and declared its intent to remove the State of Israel from the face of the Earth.

This willful dereliction of duty involving a serious violation of law is beyond understanding on any rational basis. To those, including the president, who assert that our only hope for preventing an Iranian nuclear weapon lies in approving this agreement or war, one can only state the obvious — why not keep the sanctions which were so effective in place, reopen negotiations, repair the agreement’s flaws, and broaden the new talks to include the several outrageous practices Iran is using to establish its dominance of the Middle East. Not to reopen negotiations is to break faith with the American people and the principles the president was elected to uphold.

ROBERT C. MCFARLANE

Co-founder, United States Energy Security Council

Washington

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