Quotable quotes on a deal with Iran

Tom Gross provides Mideast media analysis at his self-named site. He has added a set of quotes on the deal in process with Iran to his Mideast Dispatch Archive here. While we wait for the news from Lausanne today, I thought it might make sense to post a few of these quotes for your consideration along with links to the original sources:

* Defecting Rouhani aide speaking in Lausanne: “The U.S. negotiating team are mainly there to speak on Iran’s behalf with other members of the 5+1 countries and convince them of a deal.”

* While the West makes concessions, the head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards central Baij militia unit — one Mohammad Reza Naqdi — asserted on Tuesday that “erasing Israel off the map” is “non-negotiable[.]”

* Taking a different line from Obama’s cheerleaders at the New York Times, The Times of London editorializes (behind the Times of London’s subscription paywall): “If a deal on Iran’s nuclear programme is clinched, it will be hailed as a diplomatic breakthrough. It will be nothing of the kind. If the framework agreement is signed on the basis of current drafts it will a reckless recasting of the Middle East. The determination to notch up at least one success in Middle East peacemaking has, however, led Mr Obama to make ill-considered concessions…The deal is flawed and … naive. Instead of containing Iran’s nuclear ambitions, this deal may simply give Tehran carte blanche to plan a future with its own bomb.”

* Also taking a different line from Obama’s cheerleaders at the Times, The New York Observer in its editorial “A disastrous deal”: “President Obama must not complete a disastrous deal with Iran. Forget Churchill – Obama isn’t even measuring up to Neville Chamberlain. Chamberlain acted out of a sincere belief that he was avoiding a greater evil. Chamberlain was not thinking of his place in history. He was thinking only of the Britain that he loved, a Britain that was all but disarmed, exhausted, and vulnerable. He was dealing with a nation that had been decimated by the Great War, and a nation that was as materially unprepared for war as Germany was prepared to fight.

“Chamberlain dealt from a position of weakness, one that Hitler continually exploited in the negotiations, even by changing the time and place to make it more inconvenient for the British leader to attend them. In sharp contrast, Mr. Obama is acting out of personal aggrandizement. Mr. Obama is dealing from a position of strength that he refuses to use. Instead of using the sanctions to pursue his original promise that Iran would not get the bomb, Mr. Obama has moved the goal post…

“Even Chamberlain would not have made the disastrous agreement that Mr. Obama seems so eager to conclude… Mr. Obama is surrounded by sycophants, second-rate intellectuals, and a media that remains compliant and uncritical in the face of repeated foreign policy disasters…

“Is Obama more concerned about a Jew building an extra bedroom in Jerusalem than an Iranian building a bomb at Fordo?”

* The great Thomas Sowell in his column “Etiquette versus annihilation”: “Clearing the way for Iran to get nuclear bombs may – probably will – be the most catastrophic decision in human history.”

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