Is Obamacare anything like the Iran deal, as New York Op-Ed columnist Roger Cohen suggests?
The deal will become the “Obamacare of foreign policy,” Nicholas Burns, a Harvard professor and former under secretary of state, told me. Yes, it will. That is, something sensible (at least in the eyes of most people across the world) to which Republicans will never acquiesce and which they will try to use in every conceivable way to undermine a president they loathe.This is his argument. That Republicans attack something that "most people across the world see as sensible" for no other reason than because they don't like Obama.
The second part? It's plainly not true. As you well may know if you read my blog, is just not true. There are of course those of us who voted for Obama, like myself, who have switched sides because the evidence of Progressive policy failures has become clear.
And there are others, still Liberals, who disagree, like Alan Dershowitz.
"President Obama’s characterization of opponents of the deal as a collection of billionaires and war-hungry neocons is misleading, incomplete, and unfair. The reason so many members of Congress have come out against the agreement is their growing sense that it’s a bad deal. The public agrees; polling has repeatedly shown that Americans oppose the pact and believe that it will “make the world less safe.” As a liberal who opposed the Iraq war, I share those doubts" - Alan DershowitzIgnoring that this is a true debate on real life issues that will effect the lives of billions, both alive today and in the future, is indicative of dangerous detachment from reality. These are real people, not just some talking points for the sake of debate.
Nor is it the Republicans members of Congress (to go back to the first point) responsibility to be responsive to "the eyes of most people across the world." They have a responsibility to respond to their constituents back in the States and Districts they come from. They are the Congress of the United States, not of the world or any other foreign body.
So, let's address Mr. Cohen's points.
Why has a disaster been averted? Because if the deal had unraveled in Congress, so would America’s standing as a global power.Ask yourself, would it? Is our global power going to be destroyed from rejecting a deal with a 3rd rate power? Of course not. That's a ridiculous notion. Our power comes from our ability to project strength across the world with force.
The fact that we have chosen NOT to show that force in the face of genocide, war and historical destruction, implies the Obama administration is simply not interested in expressing that global power. They have CHOSEN to stop the United States from being that global power.
Have they not chosen to let Putin take Crimea and push into Eastern Ukraine without consequence? Have they not chosen to let China hack into our Government networks and build islands in the South China Sea without consequence? Have they not chosen to allow Iran to be a Nuclear Threshold State without consequence?
The choices have been made, now we are having to live with them.
By allowing these gross travesties, it sent a message to our allies and would be allies around the World - you can't trust the United States. Choosing to not express that global power does more to damage America's standing in the world than trying to do the right thing and making mistakes because it's ceding the playing field already to the enemy. It's allowing evil regimes "space to destroy."
We have already lost the standing we once held, particularly with our closest ally who we've gambled their very existence. Instead of stopping the negotiation when it was clear Iran would become a threshold state, this administration put the entire World now in this precarious position.
Under Netanyahu, Israel chose not to launch a preemptive military strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities when, from a diplomatic perspective, it still could have done so — when the deeply unsavory and seemingly unpredictable Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the face of the regime, and President Barack Obama had not led the West into deep diplomatic engagement. The prime minister threatened; he tangled publicly with his own military and security chiefs, serving and retired; ultimately, he opted not to act.Link
This is the mess created by Obama's over-diplomacy - that attachment to diplomacy over reality. No disaster is averted with this deal - only delayed and amplified. There is actually something worse than war, thermo-nuclear war. We would only be putting off a minor military action today, for the very realistic chance of apocalyptic destruction.
Back to the article from Mr. Cohen,
Russia, China and the European Union would have concluded that the United States is unserious. To negotiate over years a tough compromise obliging Iran, among other measures, to slash its stockpile of enriched uranium by 98 percent and its operating centrifuges by two-thirds, and then walk away in a righteous and deluded funk — well, that’s not how America won the respect of the world. It did so by being consequential in hot wars and cold.
Instead of being honest about alternatives, he's trying to create an image of what the opposition is doing, while painting Russia and China as being somehow "serious." The broad abuse of power by those in charge of those two countries, who have been looking to make deals with Iran for years, makes that statement laughable. Mr Cohen might never imagine the other side desires a better deal and would be willing to go back to the table with Iran - because he probably doesn't converse with conservatives on the matter (or even classic liberals in general).
The picture these partisans like Mr Cohen continue to try to paint of walking away is non-sense. You have to be prepared to walk away in any deal, or you will get taken. Ronald Reagan was prepared to walk away from the START treaty - and that worked out very well for the United States. It's clear now in retrospect from Congressional testimony, going into the negotiations, Team Kerry wouldn't walk away. The administration's ineptitude in negotiation has made Iran a Nuclear Threshold State, which too has weakened American's perception of protecting the Middle East from a Nuclear Arms Race. And even now, there are efforts by gulf states to achieve their own weaponry.
Basically, America's respect in the World is already shot. It doesn't matter if you blame Obama or Bush, the Progressive rhetoric has made that a fact in many minds. It doesn't help that Obama goes around saying how terrible Bush was, and how much a mistake the Iraq War was. It only exacerbates the situation and helps the propaganda of those that would destroy us.
The other issue with this is the continued expression that the enriched uranium being reduced is the only material used in Nuclear weapons, or that we will be able to inspect suspect Iranian military locations to make sure this is the case. As Nuclear Weapon Experts will tell you, weaponizing Nuclear power can come from more than Uranium.
"The importance of heavy water to a nuclear proliferator is that it provides one more route to produce plutonium for use in weapons, entirely bypassing uranium enrichment and all of the related technological infrastructure. In addition, heavy-water-moderated reactors can be used to make tritium. "
Unfortunately, the Iranians have already built that heavy water reactor.
Any notion that the measures Mr Obama and Cohen tout as somehow being able to stop Iran have gaping holes that Iran could use to continue secretly ramping up production. There is no way we will know because we won't have an adequate inspection regime, particularly at military locations.
So cheering about reducing how much Uranium Iran has is like cheering about holding a football opponent to 50 yards rushing, only to get blown out of the game by 70. It's a pointless stat - meaningless compared to the untold abuse done by the opponent.
There was no “better deal” — the fantasy of all those who hate Iran and hate Obama (which of them more is often unclear). The nuclear deal has become “such a luscious piece of Republican propaganda,” William Luers, the director of The Iran Project, whose goal is to improve American-Iranian relations, told me.This William Luers seems like the perfect person to ask - since he's paid to spread Iranian propaganda.
From their own website:
This has caused some mainstream media to impose their biases on the news and commentary coming out of Iran.So they, in their infinite ability to check the truthfulness of a subject, feel the need to step in and do so? Doubtful. Since it's run by people still inside Iran, and Iran control all it's media relations, it's a propaganda arm of the Iranian government. And yet, Mr. Cohen quotes him as an source for if there is a better deal or not.
Doesn't sound legit at all. It sounds like first hand propaganda, and any rational person would see it as biased, at the very least.
One last time from the article,
Implacable hostility to Iran will be met in kind.This is the absurd straw man that is this piece's foundation. There is actually a way to placate the conservatives - not let Iran get a nuclear weapon (which is where we were supposed to have started in the first place), have Iran agree to stop threatening their neighbors, and force Iran to comply with International Law. If Iran starts acting like a normal state, and there are ample years of proof of compliance, then maybe, that would become an option.
But as it stands now? Removing the conventional arms embargoes and allowing Iran to become an Nuclear producing country is a threat to real lives. So long as people's lives are in danger, there is no way conservatives should ever stop opposing this egregious deal.
To give a Nuclear bomb to an Iran intent on destroying Israel and disobeying international law an unverifiable pathway to the bomb, and saying that is in the interest of Israel's security interest, is utterly unpersuasive and frankly delusional.
In summary, to compare Obamacare and this maligned Iran Deal, is only possible if one considers whatever Unconstitutional actions Obama is doing as being attacked unfairly. But since they aren't, and they are just part of a host of Unconstitutional actions by this President, it's a rather silly comparison.