World attention has been focused on the war in Ukraine between the invading Russian forces and the Ukrainian people defending their homeland’s independence and sovereign rights. This crisis has however overshadowed another critical situation in which the Iranian regime, like that of Putin’s Russia, is taking advantage of US President Joe Biden’s administration’s weakness. In Vienna, Austria, where the nuclear talks are being held between the five powers (Britain, China, France, Germany, and Russia) and Iran, with the US being relegated by the Iranians to exile in a nearby hotel. The on and off talks have been going on for almost a year, with Iran dictating the terms. It is now finally reaching a climax, in which Iran will get $7 billion in sanction relief, while it keeps its centrifuges, and is allowed to develop its long-range ballistic missiles. No serious attempt has been made by the western powers participating in the Vienna talks, including the US (albeit, from a separate location), to demand from Iran the ceasing of its maligning activities in the Middle East, including the arming, training, funding, and commanding its proxies Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Houthis. The radical Ayatollahs regime in Tehran is the prime state-sponsor of terrorism worldwide.
The audacity of the Iranian negotiators knows no limits; now they are demanding that the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), the Ayatollah Khamenei’s praetorian guards, and his terrorist arm be removed from the US terrorist list. Iran’s arrogance, nevertheless, finds a sympathetic ear in Biden’s Vienna chief negotiator Robert Malley. Moreover, just like Putin’s Russia, Iran is capitalizing on Biden’s administration’s weakness, knowing that the Biden administration won’t resort to a military option, and that he wants a deal at all costs, even if it is a dangerous deal. Richard Nephew, the deputy to US special envoy for Iran Robert Malley, has resigned or was dismissed because he disagreed with Malley. Nephew favored a tougher approach to Iran due to his long experience in negotiations with the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Actually, the only condition the Biden Administration appears to demand from Iran is the release of four American citizens taken as hostages by the Ayatollahs regime. It seems that the White House is looking with trepidation at the upcoming mid-term Congressional elections, and is desperately seeking some sort of win in foreign policy after the debacle in Afghanistan. The White House apparently fears a Republican congressional victory more than a nuclear Iran.
It is wishful thinking to believe that at this juncture in history Iran would consider giving up its quest for nuclear arms. Witnessing the brutal assault of Russian forces on the Ukrainian people, the Iranian regime and others may have been reminded of the fact that in 1994, Ukraine gave up its thousands of nuclear weapons, and transferred them to Russia. This followed the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Under the agreement known as the Budapest Memorandum, in exchange for giving up its nuclear weapons, Ukraine sought and received guarantees from the US, Britain, and Russia, that its sovereignty and security will be assured.
The Iranian regime had no intention of giving up on the idea of having nuclear weapons, and the Ukraine situation has only increased their determination. Iran has cheated all along by deceiving the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and its inspectors. They have denied IAEA inspectors access to Iranian military facilities, as well as constructed unreported nuclear facilities. Some of these facilities were exposed by Iranian defectors. In January 2018, Israeli Mossad agents, in a most daring operation, lifted Iran’s nuclear secrets. These secrets proved without a doubt that, “Despite Iranian insistence that its (nuclear) program was for peaceful purposes, the country (Iran) had worked in the past (JP: before and during the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action – JCPOA 2015 agreement between Iran and the world powers) to systematically assemble everything it needed to produce Atomic weapons.”
One can easily assume that the Ayatollahs already have an assembled bomb, and if not, they have the intention and the wherewithal to assemble it. Given these circumstances, it is incomprehensible as to why the US and its western partners would lift the sanctions imposed on Iran by the US and the UN. Moreover, providing Iran with the extra cash flow that would enable the nefarious Iranian regime to fund its terror operations, posing an existential threat to Israel and to the Sunni-Arab Gulf states is sheer insanity…
Frankly, the negotiations have no purpose since the new deal sunset date of 2025 would clear the way for the Ayatollahs to legally be able to develop massive industrial-level centrifuge capacity in less than three years. After 2025, the breakout time for a nuclear bomb may be six to twelve months, and that is only on paper…
US Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), told CNN-TV that he thinks the P5+1 negotiators in Vienna are headed for ‘a good bad deal.’ He added, “And what is the problem with that? The problem with that is the administration said at the beginning that I totally embrace is that no deal is better than a bad deal. I don’t think there is such a thing as a good bad deal. It is either a good deal or a bad deal.”
According to Reuters News (February 25, 2022), “Iran will continue to enrich uranium at a 20% purity even after the sanctions on it are lifted, and the 2015 nuclear deal with the world powers is revived, Iranian news agencies quoted the country’s nuclear chief as saying.” This would clearly exceed the 2015 JCPOA agreement that set the level of uranium enrichment at only 3.67%, and the JCPOA deal also declared specifically that Iran cannot conduct any enrichment at the Fordow nuclear facility.
If the US succumbs to Iran’s demands, it is certain that China and Russia will support such an agreement. Both these countries stand to benefit from such a one-sided deal in which the US and its western allies get nothing in return. Should Iran be allowed to bring its oil to the open market, which will not fill global demand, it will likely go to China. The consequences of Iran being a ‘threshold nuclear state’ for the US and the free world would be however most severe. The Middle East will more than likely become nuclear. Saudi Arabia and possibly the UAE will purchase a bomb from Pakistan, and others such as Turkey will seek one as well.
The impending agreement between the world powers and Iran at the nuclear negotiations in Vienna prompted Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett to react. Speaking (March 1, 2022) at the Mossad headquarters he declared, “The agreement does not oblige us, and the date in another two-and-a-half years that allows Iran to install countless centrifuges certainly does not obligate us.” He added, “The sun will never set on the security of Israel and the good of its citizens.”