The arrogance of successive U.S. Administrations and their policies of imposed chaos and social upheaval in the Middle-East continues at an accelerated pace with the Obama-Kerry-Iran nuclear negotiations.
As reported by various sources this week, U.S. negotiators have offered to give Tehran Nuke Technology and Refurbish their existing Reactors.
“Iran has been transformed from a suspect state under investigation and punishment to a partner of equal standing in negotiations, in which its demands have the same status as the demands of the other side. That is, a quasi-judicial process against a suspect – Iran – has become a negotiation between judge and suspect.”
According to an Iranian Defector: The ‘U.S. Negotiating Team Mainly There to Speak on Iran’s Behalf’
An ill informed and largely illiterate American public is oblivious to the threat posed by Iran, not only to Israel and it’s Arab neighbours, but to the North American mainland itself.
“Iran has demonstrated the capability to launch a missile off a freighter. Iran has also purchased Russia’s Club-K missile system. The Club-K is a complete missile launch system, disguised to look like a shipping container, that could convert any freighter into a missile launch platform. The Club-K, if armed with a nuclear warhead, could be used to execute an EMP attack.” –
With a Congress that flip-flops between support of an oligarchy to absolute the tyranny of an absolute presidential dictatorship, the future does not bode well for the hapless residents of Post-America.
U.S. Concession On Investigating Iran’s Possible Military Dimensions (PMD)
Kerry clarified that the U.S. was not interested in focusing on Iran’s past military violations, because it is aiming to ensure that the Iranian nuclear program can be inspected in the future. He said: “What we’re concerned about is going forward. It’s critical to us to know that going forward, those activities have been stopped and that we can account for that in a legitimate way… That clearly is one of the requirements, in our judgment for what has to be achieved in order to have a legitimate agreement… And in order to have an agreement, to trigger any kind of material, significant sanctions relief, we would have to have those answers.”
With this statement, the U.S. waives its demand regarding Iran’s PMD – that is, that Iran provide explanations to the IAEA on previous suspicions of PMD of its nuclear program. Without this demand, all future inspection arrangements will be meaningless, because this concession by the U.S. sets a precedent for Iran to refrain from responding to any suspicions raised in the future.
Possible U.S. Concession Also On Future Inspections
At this point, it appears that the U.S. might back down on future inspections in two additional areas:
· According to as-yet-unverified reports, instead of “any time any place” inspections, a committee comprising representatives of all countries participating in the negotiations, including Iran, would decide whether particular suspect Iranian facilities will be inspected, if they can reach a consensus on this. In this way, the IAEA will be stripped of all independent authority.
· Access to military facilities, if allowed at all – and at this time, Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), the Majlis, and Iran’s negotiating team all reject this option out of hand – will no longer be a precondition for an agreement, but will be postponed until after an agreement is reached.
What Went Wrong In The Negotiations Process?
The U.S. and Iranian perceptions of the essence and implications of a comprehensive nuclear agreement are diametrically opposed:
The U.S. Perception
The U.S. sees a comprehensive nuclear agreement as a chance to turn over a new leaf with Iran, and even to obtain U.S. and Western influence in the country, thus transforming it from a hostile state to a friendly state that shares interests with the West.
Thus, the Obama administration’s policy is based on the rescinding of the six UN Security Council resolutions that punish Iran for its nuclear violations, and is likewise based on disregarding IAEA reports expressing suspicion that Iran is committing violations. This is why the Iranian dossier in the IAEA was dealt with based on the international community’s view of Iran as a suspect state with six UNSC resolutions still pending against it for various nuclear violations.
However, since the negotiations with Iran were taken over by the Obama administration, and are no longer in the hands of the EU3, Iran has been transformed from a suspect state under investigation and punishment to a partner of equal standing in negotiations, in which its demands have the same status as the demands of the other side. That is, a quasi-judicial process against a suspect – Iran – has become a negotiation between judge and suspect.
All this is aimed at transforming Iran de facto into a state friendly to the West and under Western influence. The model for this is U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger’s bringing Egypt, in the 1970s, and later China and the Soviet Union, to stances that were friendlier to the West.
The Iranian Perception
Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei completely rejects the U.S.’s view. As far as he is concerned, the agreement is righting a wrong inflicted on Iran, and has nothing to do with turning over a new leaf – no expurgation of the past, and no transformation of Iran into a state friendly to the West, open to Western influence, or sharing Western interests. He perceives these latter notions as a plot to bring down the ideological camp that he heads, to elevate Iran’s pragmatic camp, and to eliminate the Islamic revolutionary regime – a process which he will prevent. In his view, Iran’s future is in reliance on an independent “resistance economy” – and absolutely not on the West and on foreign investments.
Therefore, we assess that Khamenei is unwilling to reach any agreement that conforms to what the U.S. seeks. It will be remembered that in April 2015 at Lausanne, the Iranians categorically refused to sign anything or even to shake hands with the other side, and that even a positive outcome to the negotiations will not be in the form of an agreement between the sides, but will be transferred to the U.N. Security Council for a resolution.
It appears that Khamenei’s view has some basis in reality. The Obama administration is offering all these concessions neither out of naiveté nor as a conciliatory move per se, but in a realpolitik effort that is manipulative in essence and imperialist in nature, which aims for regime change in Iran not via authentic internal processes but by means of external political manipulation. The ideological camp is also aware of these intentions, and has for several years been preparing to thwart them, particularly following the emergence of the civil protest movement of 2009.
Just as Iran is not letting go of the notion of itself as an empire, it cannot let go of the idea of American policy as an imperialist attempt to manipulate the internal power brokers in Iran, to play kingmaker, and to bring down the regime. This is also why it is suspicious and completely distrustful of the Obama administration; despite all this administration’s gestures to Iran, and its submission to Iran’s demands, its policy is still perceived as nothing more than part of an imperialist American plot to bring down the current regime. This attitude explains the widespread use of terminology regarding the U.S. that regime spokesmen are unwilling to relinquish – “the Global Arrogance,” “the Great Satan,” and the slogan “Death to America” that was reiterated by Khamenei most recently on March 21, 2015 in a speech marking Norooz, the Persian New Year, and in response to President Obama’s Norooz greetings to the Iranian people (see MEMRI TV Clip No. 4838).
In June 4, 2015 statements at the tomb of Iranian regime founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, Khamenei confirmed this position, saying: “Everyone must know that the Arrogance [the U.S.] is still eying our nation because of its geopolitical importance and its wealth. They have not retreated, and they will retreat only when the Iranian nation finds a particular strength and progress that brings them to despair… The continuation of the use of the defining and practical term ‘the Great Satan,’ is highly significant. When a certain person or a certain apparatus is defined as Satan, then it is obvious how you should act towards it and how you should feel about it. The Imam [Khomeini] felt this way about America until his final day, calling it ‘the Great Satan’… This is the logic of the Imam with regard to the struggle against the Arrogance, and this logic makes it possible for us to understand today’s global issues and the proper position for us to take [regarding them]…
“Everyone must know that our enemy [the Americans], with its shifting facial expressions – sometimes glowering, sometimes smiling, sometimes with promises, sometimes with threats – aims to take over the country. The enemy wants to regain the limitless control of Iran [that it once had], and it is against Islam because Islam vigorously opposes its return… The enemy opposes Islam because it knows that Islam’s dictates are like a mighty dam in its path. It opposes the Iranian nation because this nation stands fast against it like a mountain. It will be even more opposed to those in this nation who show greater steadfastness against it… It is even more opposed to revolutionary organizations and institutions, and Hizbullah elements [such as the IRGC, the Basij, etc.], because it knows that they are like a mighty dam that prevents it from infiltrating.
“The enemy seeks control, and all its efforts are geared towards preventing the Iranian regime’s Islamic movement, which advances the nation. A senior American statesman said… ‘What is important to us is [the regime of] Islamic Iran, because Iran wants to establish a civilization.’ [But] he used the wrong term, ’empire.’ He said, ‘We must see Iran as our most significant enemy.’ This statement shows us how important it is to build [our] nation.”
Khamenei will continue to obstruct the negotiations, deliberately thwarting representatives of his rival, the pragmatic camp, by insisting on demands that can never be met. Not only that, but he can be expected to prevent the pragmatic camp from implementing the American vision of an agreement – that is, opening Iran to American and Western economic, political, and cultural influences – even if it means using force, which has happened before in the history of the Iranian Revolution.
*A. Savyon is Director of the MEMRI Iranian Media Project; Y. Carmon is President of MEMRI.