Obama Foreign Policy

Russia’s Invasion of White House Computers: The Story Still Has Not Been Told

Featured image CNN has made news with this headline: “How the U.S. thinks Russians hacked the White House.” Russian hackers behind the damaging cyber intrusion of the State Department in recent months used that perch to penetrate sensitive parts of the White House computer system, according to U.S. officials briefed on the investigation. While the White House has said the breach only affected an unclassified system, that description belies the seriousness of »

Obama bargains against his alleged self

Featured image The Washington Post’s editors point out that President Obama’s hard sell of a “deal” not yet reached with Iran might well weaken the U.S. negotiating position. Obama says that important details remain to be worked out. They include the connection between implementation by Iran of its promises and the lifting of sanctions; how inspectors can obtain access to new suspected nuclear sites; and how they can get answers to questions »

The case of the missing fatwa, take 6

Featured image The invaluable MEMRI observes: In President Obama’s announcement of the joint statement following the conclusion of the negotiations in Lausanne, he again mentioned the nonexistent fatwa, stating as fact that Iran’s Supreme Leader has issued a fatwa against the development of nuclear weapons.[1] This assertion by the president is not true. Such a fatwa has never been issued, and to this day no one has been able to show it, »

The gospel according to Tom

Featured image I can’t find a transcript of the apostle Tom Friedman’s interview with his lord and master Obama, the video of which I posted yesterday in “Fatuity and fatwas.” However, the Times has published an expanded version of Friedman’s account online in “Iran and the Obama doctrine.” It captures key quotes from the interview with one exception. The pending arrangement with Iran is Obama’s devoutly wished consummation of a one-sided love »

Daniel Pipes: The Obama Doctrine Serves Up One Disaster After Another

Featured image Daniel Pipes reviews the wreckage of Barack Obama’s foreign policies: Count the mistakes: Helping overthrow Muammar Qaddafi in Libya, leading to anarchy and civil war. Pressuring Husni Mubarak of Egypt to resign, then backing the Muslim Brotherhood, leading now-president Sisi to turn toward Moscow. Alienating Washington’s most stalwart ally in the region, the Government of Israel. Dismissing ISIS as “junior varsity” just before it seized major cities. Hailing Yemen as »

The Iran deal: It’s settled science

Featured image Back in the United States, Omri Ceren continues his reports on the pending deal with Iran. Today he comments on one of the Obama administration’s themes supporting the deal. It seems to have something in common with the administration’s take on global warming climate change. I thought readers who have been following this series might be interested in this report as well: According to the weekend reports – and based »

Of fatuity and fatwas

Featured image President Obama sat for an interview with New York Times columnist Tom Friedman on Saturday. When it comes to Obama Friedman is no doubting Thomas. He is the Apostle Tom. He believes in what he views to be “the Obama doctrine.” This is the gospel according to Tom. Friedman brings up the lurking issue of “red lines” at about 34:00. It’s Senator Cotton and his 46 colleagues who have crossed »

When their Supreme Leader disagrees with ours

Featured image Following the announcement of the Joint Plan of Action (interim agreement) with Iran in November 2013, disagreements emerged regarding the terms of the deal represented in public by Iran and the United States. Insofar as could be determined by reviewing the terms of the JPOA itself (as opposed to some secret protocol), I found the Iranian representations to be consistently more reliable than those of the United States. The announcement »

Bill Kristol: Kill the deal

Featured image Bill Kristol has posted a special Weekly Standard editorial on the framework agreement with Iran. We’ll have more to say, but Bill presents with an action item: Commentators have exposed how bad the Iran deal is in various ways; the point, however, is to kill it. Why? Because the deal can’t be fixed. Even if sanctions relief were somewhat more gradual, even if the number of centrifuges were somewhat lower, »

Iran hedges on adherence to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty’s “additional protocol”

Featured image In my view, the Iranian nuclear “framework” would be inadequate even if it contained air-tight verification procedures. The deal doesn’t shut down key facilities; it permits Iran to keep enriching uranium; and it comes with an expiration date. Be that as it may, no one disputes the need for strong verification procedures. Even President Obama has insisted that he’s relying on verification, not mere promises by the Iranian regime. As »

How Rouhani Explained the Nuclear Deal to Iranians

Featured image Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani went on state-run television today to explain the deal that has been reached (in principle, at least) to the Iranian people. FARS News describes the speech: Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani underlined on Friday that all the UN and economic, financial and banking sanctions against Iran will be annuled the moment a final nuclear deal between Iran and the six world powers goes into effect. This was »

The obvious alternative to Obama’s Iran “framework”

Featured image In defending his framework for a deal with Iran (or whatever one wants to call it), President Obama challenges opponents to say what their alternative is. It’s telling that he seems to be relying so heavily on this defense. If one makes a good deal, one touts the deal. One doesn’t plead that there were no better alternatives. In any event, it’s no challenge to say what the alternative to »

The Shanker scenario

Featured image The Boston Globe has given over space on its editorial pages to Secretary of State John Kerry to tout the “framework” written variously in the hearts of the parties negotiating in Lausanne with the Islamic Republic of Iran about Iran’s nuclear program. Kerry’s column is headlined “A critical deal with Iran, but more work to be done.” Kerry writes: On Thursday, the United States, Iran, and our negotiating partners from »

Losin’ in Lausanne (8)

Featured image Omri Ceren writes from Lausanne to put today’s announcement of a “framework” for an agreement in perspective: Zarif just finished his speech, and there’s a break while the President speaks back in DC. But some of what Zarif revealed has already generated controversy. There was a lot of braggadocio in the speech: no closing of facilities, R&D will continue on Iran’s scientific schedule, enrichment will continue, the heavy water at »

Quotable quotes on a deal with Iran

Featured image 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 »

How Republicans can give Obama leverage against Iran, whether he wants it or not

Featured image Negotiations between Team Obama and the mullahs of Iran failed to result in an agreement before the supposed deadline. However, to no one’s surprise (except the Washington Post) the parties will continue to negotiate. White House spokesman Josh Earnest intoned that “it’s time for Iran to make the serious commitments that they know the international community is expecting them to make to reach an agreement.” Actually, it’s past that time. »

A blast of truth

Featured image Prime Minister Netanyahu has made a statement on the ongoing negotiations with Iran. The statement is a clarion call with the blast of truth. In it, Netanyahu refers to the statement by the Iran militia chief stating that Israel’s destruction is “non-negotiable.” The statement is reported here by the Times of Israel. The video of Netanyahu’s statement is below. The Washington Free Beacon has posted this transcript: Yesterday an Iranian »