Rouhani Launches His ‘Charm Offensive’

Hassan-Rouhani_2641568bIt doesn’t take a genius to game the West. The West—and particularly its elite people who make or influence policy—wants to be gamed, to be convinced that there is never a need for military operations and one’s easy, luxurious life can continue undisturbed.

So the Rouhani charm offensive has begun. Hassan Rouhani, Iran’s president since August 3, on the way to address the UN General Assembly in a few days, coos to the West and, especially, President Barack Obama:

We have time and again said that under no circumstances would we seek any weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons, nor will we ever….

This government enters with full power and has complete authority. I have given the nuclear negotiations portfolio to the Foreign Ministry. The problem won’t be from our side. We have sufficient political latitude to solve this problem….

We do not seek war with any country. We seek peace and friendship among the nations of the region….

And his recent exchange of letters with Obama, says Rouhani, was “positive and constructive….It could be subtle and tiny steps for a very important future….”

The charm offensive comes at a time when Iran is hurting economically from the West’s sanctions, its monthly revenues from oil sales having dropped 58 percent while the rial plummets and inflation and unemployment soar. Could the charm offensive have something to do with a desire to ease the sanctions while making creaky promises to the West that it would be all too eager to accept?

No, it couldn’t be that. It must be that—after investing well over $100 billion in a nuclear program that provides less than 2 percent of its energy needs, voluminously proclaiming its intention to destroy Israel, sponsoring worldwide terrorism at a level unseen in decades according to the U.S. State Department, and installing at least 7000 new centrifuges since Rouhani was elected—Iran has changed!

To believe that it has changed one has to, of course, tune out some less pleasing notes than those Rouhani has been singing. For instance, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei—who, as anyone with minimal Iran knowledge knows, is in charge of things no matter what nonsense Rouhani speaks about “complete authority”—told members of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard on Tuesday:

Heroic flexibility is very useful and necessary sometimes but with adherence to one main condition…. A wrestler sometimes shows flexibility for technical reasons. But he does not forget about his opponent nor about his main objective.

For those who say Iran is gaming the West and hasn’t changed, those words about an “opponent” and a “main objective” appear to be a smoking gun—that is, unless one is determined to ignore the odor of gun smoke. And there were also these words from the commander of the Revolutionary Guard, Ali Jafari:

the arrogant enemy [America] suffered defeat in Syria in all things related to military intervention as well as with the rest of its plans. They did not succeed with anything concerning Syria. We have nothing to fear from them here in Iran….

Not much charm there either, and again, it seems to bear out those who say Obama’s acquiescence to a transparently flawed deal on Syria’s chemical weapons has only boosted Tehran’s confidence and contempt for the West.

Unless, of course, one is determined that the words of those who say such things will not be borne out no matter what.

For that matter, to be sweet-talked by Rouhani one has to ignore some things about him, too.

Such as his being a dyed-in-the-wool, lifelong follower of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini;  the fact that he chaired Iran’s National Security Council during the years of the Jewish Community Center bombing in Buenos Aires and the Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia; the fact that he boasts of having already gamed the West as Iran’s nuclear negotiator in 2003; and the fact that Iran’s June presidential elections were transparently manipulated by the regime to give Rouhani—the faux “reformer”—the win.

Obama, for his part, says:

There are indications that Rouhani, the new president, is somebody who is looking to open dialogue with the West and with the United States, in a way that we haven’t seen in the past. And so we should test it.

Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu, too, will be addressing the UN on Iran, and on September 30 will be meeting with Obama in Washington. On the Iranian issue Netanyahu has acted as Obama’s better angel, trying to apprise him of the reality of a deeply ideological, anti-Western regime that is working hard to develop intercontinental ballistic missiles that can reach the U.S.

It is, though, no secret that Israeli officialdom’s belief—or hopes—in Obama were hardly encouraged by his bungling of the Syrian issue. Situated where it is, Israel lacks the West’s latitude for being beguiled by Tehran. As Israeli Middle East expert Martin Kramer told the Wall Street Journal: “The chance that Israel may need to act first against Iran has gone up.”

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  • ShalomFreedman

    This article tells it like it is. The West and Obama at its head wants to be duped, does not want the disturbance and problems of military conflict.
    The Russians appear now to have saved Obama from such conflict in regard to the Syrian question. But there is no evidence that the deal Russia and the United States made will be honored by Syria. It will take time, but of course that’s what the Obama Administration seems to want, time to run out the clock before they have to do anything.
    Iran is on the verge or already has the capability for nuclear weapons. Rouhani is lying but his lies are eagerly sought by the West. Iran may well be left off the hook by Obama, leaving Israel alone with the Iranian nuclear threat. An agreement between Iran and the United States would also make Israel seem to be an aggressor should it decide to preempt.

  • Alvaro

    Great news. The sanctions are working and Iran is becoming desperate. If the country faces even tougher sanctions in the future, Iran might face economic collapse. The answer lies in increasing pressure, not easing it.

    • defcon 4

      I don’t think the religious despots who run Iran care about an economic collapse.

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  • Mladen_Andrijasevic

    What I do not understand is how is it possible that in the whole of the western world there is not one TV station which would check that the translation from Farsi in this video is accurate and then broadcast the video in which Rouhani boasts how he duped the European nuclear negotiators. There must be some people still left who are concerned that a nuclear war would be catastrophic for everyone, not only Israel.. Why cannot the Israeli TV channels do it? Why does not the Israeli government call a press conference and show the video?

    Video: Rouhani boasting how he duped the European nuclear negotiators

    • dartson

      The Israeli TV channels (as most of the MSM in Israel) are in the hands of the leftists that adore Obama and will never criticize him and his policies. As for the government, Netanyahu doesn’t have the balls to attack Iran, so he decided to play along with Obama. Fortunately, the Internet is (still) free from the leftist domination.

      • Mladen_Andrijasevic

        While it may be true that Israeli TV channels are left wing,
        they are still aware of the Iranian threat, perhaps not of the full magnitude. On the other hand, from this link it is clear that Netanyahu is, thanks to Bernard Lewis, fully aware that if he does nothing we will all be incinerated, so it is not the question whether Netanyahu has the balls or not- he simply has no other choice but to preempt. For some weird reason not many in the US seem to understand this.

        • TheOrdinaryMan

          Nice blog, but your post is a year old–it talks about “the coming 2012 election.” Why hasn’t Israel struck Iran, since then? What’s holding them back?

          • Mladen_Andrijasevic

            Well, that is clear. The Obama administration supports the anti-Semitic and anti-American Muslim Brotherhood and is doing everything to appease Iran. It is just unfortunate that Israel’s PR is so bad that almost impossible to explain to the American populace the magnitude of the threat and the enormous danger of Obama’s Iran policy. Israel will eventually strike Iranian nuclear sites whether Obama likes it or not.

            Why is Israel’s PR so bad, especially regarding Iran?

  • truebearing

    He is a snake…of the same species as Obama. The forks of his tongue are longer than your shoe laces.

  • Dr. John
  • Melvin Polatnick

    Rouhani will be overthrown by the military if he attempts to stop Iran from having a nuclear weapon. Israel will not attack for fear of bringing in Russia and China into the conflict. But even if Iran gets the bomb Israel has fifty as a deterrent. There will never be a nuclear exchange.

    • Hass

      Trust me, Iran will use them. The seem hell bent on bringing their dooms day mythical Mehdi.


      If Israel were to be hit, Bye, Bye Mecca – for starters.

    • ObamaYoMoma

      But even if Iran gets the bomb Israel has fifty as a deterrent.

      Uhm…it only takes one to obliterate Israel and fifty to obliterate Iran, and after Iran has been obliterated, there will still be significantly more that billion Muslims. Not to mention that if you think oil prices are high today, wait until after Iran acquires nukes. Then they will inevitably skyrocket. And who said that Iran would stop at just one, as they obviously have the ability to create many of them in a relatively short time. Pass the kool-aid buddy.

      • Aizino Smith

        Israel does not have to hit Iran with 50. A few or several will do. After even a small nuclear exchange Iran would be weak enough for Iraq, Pakistan, Uzbekistan or Azerbaijan to move in.

        There are a significant number of ethic Azeris who are Iranian citizens. Azerbaijan hates Iran so much they cooperate with Israel. Azerbaijan wants a piece of Iran.

        Do you think If Tehran got hit that Azerbaijan would not move in?
        there only concern would be if the Russians or turks threatened them.

        • ObamaYoMoma

          I learned a long time ago that people indulging themselves in the game of trying to predict the outcome of wars, especially when it involves the Middle East, almost always end up with egg on their face.

          • IslamIsFascism

            Fortunately! Everyone bet on Israel to lose the War of Independence, because on paper, they should have.

          • Aizino Smith


            I merely point out that when one country wants to war with another country to destroy it or take a chunk out of it they had better be careful that they are not so weakened that other wolves do not devour them.

      • Aizino Smith

        Khuzestan is the major oil-producing region of Iran,

        A 1998 report by UNCHR reported 2 million Arabs residing in Khuzestan Province, most of whom are Shi’a

        The Shia dominated government of Iraq would see this as a perfect fit.

  • wildjew

    Davik Hornik, has it occurred to you, Barack Obama might want Iran to join the nuclear club in order to “level out” the playing field in the region? Notwithstanding what John Kerry and John McCain say, there does not appear to a good side, worth supporting, in Syria; unless like Obama is prone to do, support the side that wants to impose sharia law; persecute Christian and other minorities. If Obama were serious about weapons of mass destruction, why not go for the head of the snake, Iran?

    • Aizino Smith

      I would not want to go to war with Obama as Commander in Chief. He has got be worse than LBJ in that regard.

      Let’s put it this way. Obama is so bad, I would be willing to roll the dice on Biden as Commander in Chief and I think while politically cunning he is stupid


    As long at that savage Rouhani in his clerical Halloween costume,

    we can’t believe a word he says.

    The only good thing about Rouhani is that his name is easier to spell than his predecessor Ahm-mad-bout-jihad.

    • Andrew

      The correct way to spell his predecessor’s name is A-Mad-Dog-on-Jihad.

      • TienBing

        Sometimes pronounced: I’m a nut job.

  • kasandra

    On today’s Powerline, Scott Johnson has a great summary of Obama’s Iran policy. “Following up on his Syrian diplomatic triumph, President Obama is ready
    to bring us more of the same, and worse, with Iran. Rouhani is the
    perfect partner for Obama. Obama wants to do nothing about Iran’s
    pursuit of nuclear weapons and Rouhani wants to accommodate his need for
    meaningless negotiations that may lead to a meaningless agreement. Iran
    is bent on the acquisition of nuclear weapons and if Obama has his way,
    Iran will get them without further impediments.”

  • tokoloshiman

    Why is it that one spelling cannot be decided upon for these extremists ?
    is it rowhani or rouhani, is it morsi or mursi , is it hizbollah or hezbollah?
    I am so sick of this on going support for these radical chest beating purveyors of sharia and hate filled propaganda. Does the western press not feel some shame in depicting these as people or groups in such a rosy way?
    These are the people who wish to kill us and destroy western civilization.
    is this too hard for the west to understand or is the west now impervious to common sense and childishly believing that these monsters are just part of a nightmare while asleep and are not real or threatening in any way in the real world.
    Has all pride in western achievements evaporated in a yellow mist of capitulation?
    Is it some kind of deluded stockholm syndrome that has clouded the hearts and minds of people who love and cherish freedom but who at the same time are willing to do nothing at all to protect those hard won freedoms.
    Is self loathing the new patriotism?
    What a mad world we live in , where everything is back to front.
    And to make matters far worse the USA has to endure another three years of the dismal obama administration and its camarilla of incompetents and utterly inept appointees!

  • ObamaYoMoma

    Just like the USA is on the fast track to self-destruction. So is the West as well. I mean common sense dictates that you don’t let people like Muslims that fully intend to subjugate all religions and all infidels into Islamic totalitarianism through violent and non-violent jihad and the eventual imposition of Sharia, which is Islamic totalitarian law, possess nuclear weapons unless you have an unhinged death wish. Very apparently the West, which is universally dominated by the self-hating Left, has a suicidal death wish.

  • ziggy zoggy

    Rouhani is not a “follower” of either ayatollahs. He is a Frontman. He’s like a monkey with a cup chained to an organ and the ayatollah is the organ grinder. His job is to convince a gullible West that he is a real political leader and that Iran actually has a representative government, rather than a primitive theocracy ruled by a potentate.

    When will you people stop treating him as an authentic world leader?

    • Aizino Smith

      You mean Obama and Rouhani have something in common?

      • ziggy zoggy

        Ha! Yeah. Although in Obama’s case, his apparatchiks concoct policy and he has final authority. Rouhani can’t squat without the “ayatollah’s” permission.

        HeIIuva world we live in.

      • MalalchHaMavet

        Two Snakes in a pod

  • defcon 4

    I hope they’re not that insane.

  • TheOrdinaryMan

    Very factual article, and very straightforward. Necessary, too, to clarify who Rouhani is. I must say…the Israelis are V-E-R-Y patient.

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