Being played for suckers by Tehran

Neither the Biden administration nor the British government yet grasps the imbecility of appeasement

An Israeli delegation has been in Washington DC today trying to persuade the Biden administration of the catastrophic folly of its intention to rejoin the shocking 2015 Iran nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). This deal would facilitate an Iranian nuclear weapon with at best a delay of a few years, and by lifting sanctions would open the west’s financial spigots to funnel billions of dollars into the world’s most dangerous terrorist state. 

Asked last Friday whether the Israeli delegation would change the Biden administration’s position, the White House spokesman Jen Psaki said :

No

before waffling about

ongoing indirect discussions about a diplomatic path forward

and keeping the Israelis abreast

as a key partner of these discussion — or of our intentions …

Thus three days before the Israelis turned up, the Biden administration said in effect that their visit was a total waste of time. There was simply no argument whatever that would persuade it to change course. The Israelis would be told what America intends to do about Iran, and they would just have to suck it up.

In recent weeks, the Biden team has expressed anger and irritation at Israel’s recent attacks on Iranian targets aimed at disabling the regime’s capacity to ramp up its murderous activities even further. The Bidenites have made clear that Israel should do nothing to imperil the negotiations aimed at restarting the JCPOA.

Since Iran repeatedly declares its intention to wipe Israel off the face of the earth, is planning to use nuclear weapons to achieve that infernal aim and to that end has more than 200,000 missiles trained upon Israel from southern Lebanon under the control of its proxy army, Hezbollah, the Biden administration is in effect expressing irritation  and anger that Israel has the effrontery to imperil an American policy that would help Iran make good its threat to wipe Israel off the map.

With friends like these, eh?

The really imbecilic thing about the Bidenites’ position is that they are poised to throw Iran a lifeline just when it is showing signs of potentially fatal weakness. The authoritative American foreign policy analyst David Wurmser lays out the administration’s astonishing perversity in this piece, which is worth reading in full.

Wurmser observes that, despite its bluster, the Iranian regime is in increasingly desperate straits. He writes that last year it reeled from two assassinations — the killing of the irreplaceable Iran Revolutionary Guards’ al Quds Corps commander, Ghassan Soleimani, by a US drone, and the killing by unknown assailants of Brigadier- General Mohsen Fakhrizadeh who led the IRGC’s nuclear programme. Wurmser writes:

Both deaths of these high-profile humiliations remain glaringly unavenged, despite shrill rhetoric by Iran’s leaders promising to visit the gates of hell on the perpetrators. Instead of inflicting revenge, Iran found itself even further humiliated when its strategic programmes suffered a long series of incidents, accidents and unrest in the summer and fall that damaged many Iranian facilities suspected of being involved in some way with its nuclear or ballistic programmes.

Covid-19 rages at astronomical rates, vaccinations having barely started, the economy continues to sink, and the mysterious accidents and incidents at key strategic facilities carry on. On the high seas, after having attempted to environmentally destroy Israel’s Mediterranean coast, Iran’s floating IRGC ships conducting strategic activities in critical sea lanes have now too begin suffering such incidents and sit still now dead in the water.

In short, while the Biden administration seems determined to restore the JCPOA, lift sanctions on Iran, and halt the clandestine activities — whom leaking US officials attribute to Israel — thus far the economy continues to sink, the mysterious actions against strategic targets continue and the Israelis openly vow to continue to do whatever they need to do to stop Iran’s regional, nuclear and ballistic ambitions.

And whether by the hand of God or man, top IRGC officials continue to die under obscure circumstances, the latest being Mohammed Hejazi, the head of the IRGC ballistic programmes and liaison with Lebanese Hizballah and the Yemeni Houthis… What really happened with General Hejazi will remain a mystery, but the bottom line is that the Iranian regime ends the year with its own senior officials unwilling to buy anything as truthful said by any other official of the regime. Everyone is scrambling into the safety of his own self-serving conspiracy theory du jour to cope with the undigestible reality that the enemies of Iran’s regime, likely Israel, operate devastatingly at will within Iran’s most sensitive facilities and most important people.

… In-the-know senior Iranian officials in the energy and nuclear bureaucracies have emphasised in unguarded moments that the incident at Natanz in early April destroyed thousands of centrifuges and was a blow around which Iran cannot easily work for quite some time — having essentially shut down large-scale enrichment.  Incidents last summer similarly hampered their strategic programmes. 

Yet instead of taking advantage of this weakness by stepping up sanctions and pressure on Tehran to bring down a regime that threatens to inflict further attacks on America’s own interests, the Biden administration is allowing itself to be played. Accordingly, the regime is deploying its most tried and trusted weapon — its ability to manipulate America through its acute understanding of the west’s suicidal instinct for appeasement. So it is busily projecting an invincible ability to threaten. Writes Wurmser:

This is all a charade to create an international climate of acute crisis and extreme danger of escalation as part of its strategy to press the West into making the necessary concessions to return to a weakened JCPOA, which in turn would unlock funds and cause serious tensions between Washington and Jerusalem and pave the path to a nuclear arsenal. Sadly, it appears likely that Washington will plunge headlong into this trap.

Today brought the appalling news that Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who has served five years in an Iranian jail having effectively been held as a British hostage by the regime on a trumped-up charge, has now been sentenced to a further year in prison. This is unspeakable cruelty to a woman who, after all she has suffered over the past five years, was released only to find that she remains trapped in a further Kafka-esque nightmare.

But now look at the British government’s pathetically limp response:

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “I don't think it is right at all that Nazanin should be sentenced to any more time in jail."

He said it was “wrong that she is there in the first place” and pledged to work hard to secure her release so she could return to her family, “just as we work for all our dual national cases in Iran.

“The government will not stop, we will redouble our efforts, and we are working with our American friends on this issue as well,” Mr Johnson said.

“Not right at all”? “Wrong that she is there in the first place”? Being hit with a lettuce leaf would have more impact.

The reason Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe remains trapped as a hostage in Iran is that the regime regards the British government with contempt. Not only will it not take condign action against Iran over this or anything else, but it was a leading enthusiast for the JCPOA and remains committed to the appeasement of the regime. And as I have observed before, what Britain, America and the rest of the west regard as diplomacy, Iran views as the west offering its collective throat to be cut.

Biden’s America is now appeasement central, while the British government feebly flaps its own white flag in the background. The inability of the west even now to learn from the demonstrably disastrous consequences of this mindset over the years is truly astounding.

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