Iran

Johnson’s short course on Iran

Featured image In the January 21 Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on our ongoing negotiations with Iran, Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken appeared as the principal witness. Treasury Under Secretary David Cohen also appeared in his last time around before he assumes responsibilities as CIA deputy director. Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson questioned Blinken and Cohen over seven and a half minutes toward the end of the hearing. In the preface to »

Rubio’s short course on Iran

Featured image In the January 21 Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on our ongoing negotiations with Iran, Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken appeared as the principal witness. Senator Rubio questioned Blinken over twelve minutes toward the end of the hearing. In the course of his questions, Senator Rubio provided a short course on the problematic premises of our negotiations with Iran (video below). “We’re not dealing with Belgium here,” Senator Rubio »

Iran nonsense

Featured image Steve Hayes captures the Obama administration’s current line on Iran in the Weekly Standard editorial “Iran nonsense.” One fount of nonsense is President Obama’s intent, as I see it, to deliver an agreement with Iran that will secure and finance its nuclear program. President Obama wishes to clear the path to do so without any interference from Congress. While President Obama continues to withdraw the United States from engagements with »

Amb. Dermer speaks

Featured image The Obama administration is throwing a hissy fit over the invitation extended by Speaker Boehner to Prime Minister Netanyahu to address a joint session of Congress over the threat posed by Iran. Given the existential nature of the threat posed by Iran to Israel, one might have entertained hopes that the Obama administration would behave otherwise, but those hopes would have been foolish. Last night Israeli Ambassador to the United »

Who killed Alberto Nisman? part 3

Featured image The death of Alberto Nisman in his Buenos Aires apartment continues to give rise to troubling revelations something other than the suicide that appeared to be the cause of his death. Nisman was of course the Argentine prosecutor who charged the Iranian regime with the bombing of the 1994 Jewish community center; 85 Argentinians were killed in the bombing, the worst terror attack in the country’s history. Nisman was killed »

Why did Netanyahu accept Boehner’s invitation?

Featured image The Obama administration reportedly is fuming over Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to accept Speaker Boehner’s invitation to address Congress, which Netanyahu made without consulting the White House. The Israeli Prime Minister will “pay a price,” an administration official told an Israeli newspaper. Obama has perfected the art of ginning up grievances against Netanyahu and using them to seek concessions from Israel, as Netanyahu tries to smooth things over. I assume there’s »

Who killed Alberto Nisman? part 2

Featured image The news related to the death of Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman this past Sunday is arriving in torrent. Nisman was killed under suspicious circumstances on the eve of the explosive testimony he was to give regarding his government’s complicity with Iran to suppress the investigation of the 1994 Jewish community center bombing; the suspicious circumstances include the staging of his death as an apparent suicide. The New York Times reports »

What Blinken said

Featured image We took a brief look at the comments made by Senator Robert Menendez at the Senate Foreign Relations Commitee hearing earlier this week here. The witnesses before the committee were Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Treasury Under Secretary David Cohen. The committee hearing addressed the issued related to our negotiations with Iran over its illicit nuclear program. C-SPAN has posted the nearly three-hour hearing in its entirety here. »

Netanyahu violates “protocol,” White House alleges

Featured image John Boehner has invited Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to address the House of Rep, and Netanyahu has accepted. The White House, through press secretary Josh Earnest, responded by alleging a breach of protocol. Boehner denied the breach. He replied: The Congress can make this decision on its own. I don’t believe I’m poking anyone in the eye. There is a serious threat that exists in the world and the president, »

What Menendez said

Featured image Senator Robert Menendez is the ranking (Democratic) member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. This morning at a committee hearing he said this to Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Treasury Under Secretary (and prospective CIA deputy director) David Cohen: “I have to be honest with you, the more I hear from the administration and its quotes, the more it sounds like talking points that come straight out of »

Who killed Alberto Nisman?

Featured image Circumstantial evidence suggests that Alberto Nisman committed suicide at his Buenos Aires apartment on Sunday. Within Argentina, however, this circumstantial evidence has been treated with substantial skepticism. The New York Times conveys the suspicions in an article by Jonathan Gilbert and Simon Romero: “Puzzling death of a prosecutor grips Argentina.” Christopher Dickey’s Daily Beast article puts Nisman’s death in the context of the ongoing war between Israel and Iran. Next »

The lonesome death of Alberto Nisman

Featured image The BBC reports that Argentinian prosecutor Alberto Nisman was found dead on Sunday. He was found in a pool of blood with a gunshot wound to his head at his apartment in Buenos Aires. The BBC report notes that a gun and a cartridge shell were found next to Nisman’s body. The Times of Israel has more here and the Wall Street Journal has more here. One would infer from »

At the Sterling trial

Featured image Last week the government commenced its prosecution of former CIA official Jeffrey Sterling for violation of the Espionage Act. The government alleges that Sterling leaked the details of a program intended to undermine Iran’s nuclear program to New York Times reporter James Risen. The program was subject to a security classification indicating its extreme sensitivity. Sterling did not publicly disclose the details of the CIA program; he laundered them through »

Making sense of Obama’s counter-intuitive approach to negotiations with Iran

Featured image Last week, President Obama and British Prime Minister Cameron pleaded with Congress not to pass new sanctions legislation against Iran. Such legislation, which has strong bipartisan support, could undermine ongoing negotiations, they argued. “Just hold your fire” until we complete negotiations, Obama urged. But Obama’s position seems nonsensical on its face. The sanctions legislation Congress contemplates passing does exactly what Obama instructs Congress to do. As the Washington Post’s editors »

Obama’s donation, behind closed doors

Featured image Recent developments involving the Islamic Republic of Iran can fairly be characterized as grave. Iran has announced that it has begun construction on two more nuclear plants, and the authorities have imprisoned a Washington Post journalist on mysterious charges. Iran’s actions are provocative. The gravity of the regime’s provocation is compounded by the complacent attitude of President Obama and his administration. According to the State Department, the new nuclear reactors »

Stockholm syndrome at the Washington Post

Featured image Stockholm syndrome occurs when hostages express empathy, sympathy, and/or positive feelings about their captors, even to the point of identifying with and/or defending them. The Washington Post, whose reporter Jason Rezaian has been imprisoned in Tehran for more than five months, appears to be experiencing something resembling Stockholm syndrome. Consider this article by Carol Morello. She reports that Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, has expressed concern about what he »

Risen rules

Featured image New York Times reporter James Risen was subpoenaed to testify in the prosecution of CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling. Sterling is under prosecution for blowing a CIA program intended to undermine Iran’s nuclear program. The program was subject to a security classification indicating its extreme sensitivity. To no discernible public good, Risen publicized the program in his book State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration. »