EU Stands By Iran Deal Despite Mounting Intel
Merkel, Macron seek to tweak the deal ahead of Trump’s May 12 deadline.
The European Union has come to the defense of the Tehran regime and the 2015 nuclear deal after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday revealed a cache of secret Iranian plans to build nuclear weapons, almost three years after the signing of the deal.
The EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini dismissed the intelligence findings, claiming the deal was “based on concrete commitments, verification mechanisms and a very strict monitoring of facts.” She defended Iran’s conduct, saying, UN nuclear watchdog IAEA has “published 10 reports, certifying that Iran has fully complied with its commitments.”
“#IranDeal isn’t based on assumptions of good faith or trust. It’s based on concrete commitments, verification mechanisms and a very strict monitoring of facts, done by @iaeaorg” @FedericaMog‘s reply to a question regarding @IsraeliPM presentation on Iran https://t.co/lBRC3NeuIb
— European External Action Service – EEAS ???????? (@eu_eeas) April 30, 2018
In an uncharacteristic move, Germany contradicted the EU foreign policy chief by agreeing with Israeli intelligence assessment that the agreement had failed to contain Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s new-found flexibility on the issue could have something to do with her Oval Office meeting with President Trump on Friday.
“It is clear that the international community had doubts that Iran was carrying out an exclusively peaceful nuclear program,” a spokesman for the German government said. “It was for this reason the nuclear accord was signed in 2015, including the implementation of an unprecedented, thorough and robust surveillance system by the International Atomic Energy Agency.”
Despite these damning admissions, Chancellor Merkel stands firmly behind the nuclear deal. Merkel’s government “reacted cautiously to Israeli allegations,” reported the Germany’s state-funded broadcaster ARD. The assessment was echoed by the German weekly DIE ZEIT, saying the government was “restrained in its initial response” to the Israeli revelations.
The evidence, however, has finally forced the Germany government and the media to admit the flaws of the deal that they had been defending almost in unison.
“Israel’s scoop offers a chance for a better Iran deal,” the headline in the German daily DIE WELT said. “For years, Iran has shamelessly lied about its nuclear program. The Israeli revelations are a welcome opportunity to renegotiate the nuclear agreement.” The newspaper, however, dismissed the idea of killing the deal, saying, “Pulling out would be self-defeating.” Praising the Israeli intelligence Mossad, the newspaper wrote:
One thing is for sure: the operation by the Mossad, to smuggle out 50,000 documents belonging to the Iranian regime on its nuclear program, should make it into the annals of history of the Western intelligence agencies. It is a spectacular and daring mission–even for an agency known for its high-stake operations in order to secure the existence of Israel. [Translation by the author]
The nuclear deal, once described by the mainstream media as Obama administration’s “legacy-defining achievement,” could well be on its last legs as President Trump mulls pulling out of the agreement. The President has set May 12 as the deadline to decide the fate of the deal.
Largely thanks to President Trump’s diplomatic efforts, France has diluted its support for the Iran deal as well. Earlier this week, President Macron said he favored a “new deal” with Iran. However, the multi-billion trade agreements secured by French companies in Iranian oil and gas sector in the wake of the nuclear deal makes it unlikely for the French government to back any harsh US sanctions or actions against the Islamic regime. France, much like Germany, would prefer some additional safeguards than a complete US withdrawal from the agreement.
Meanwhile, Israel intensified its diplomatic efforts to bring the European countries on board. According to Israeli media, Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke on the phone with President Macron and Chancellor Merkel about the intelligence concerning Iran’s secret nuclear program.
Prime Minister Netanyahu also plans to dispatch experts to France and Germany to share the intelligence. Israel will “send in the coming days professional teams that will share with Germany and France the detailed material Israel obtained on Iran’s efforts to obtain a nuclear weapon,” Israeli Prime Minister’s office wrote on Twitter.
Israeli Prime Minister also intends to appraise the British and Chinese leaders on the intel as well, Israeli media reports indicate.
PM Netanyahu spoke today with French President Macron and German Chancellor Merkel.
PM Netanyahu agreed that he would send professional teams to share with Germany and France the detailed material that has reached Israel regarding Iran’s efforts to achieve nuclear weapons.
— PM of Israel (@IsraeliPM) April 30, 2018
Despite Israeli diplomatic push to convince France, Germany, and other European players of the obvious and inherent flaws of the Iran deal, it may be a uphill task. The lifting of sanctions on Tehran following the nuclear agreement has been a financial windfall for German and French private and public sector firms. Last summer, Iran signed a $5 billion energy deal with French oil giant Total. Apart from Germany’s interest in Iranian oil reserves, Berlin hopes to establish itself as the leading player in Iranian manufacturing sectors and infrastructure development. Aircraft-maker Airbus, in which Germany and France hold substantial stakes, landed a $27 billion contract to supply airliners to Tehran.
With billion of euros at stake, the European leaders have a vested interest in opposing a potential move by the US to scrap the deal. As novelist Upton Sinclair aptly said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”
Video: Iran nuclear deal ‘needs to be preserved, says EU foreign policy chief Mogherini [April 25, 2018]
[Cover image via YouTube]
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It may be too late to do anything about existing contracts, but Trump has the power to unilaterally reimpose all the UN sanctions, and he’s had this power since the day he took office, but has chosen not to use it. It doesn’t matter what the Europeans think, or even the Russians and Chinese; if Trump triggers the snap-back clause they will have no choice. 30 days later the UN sanctions will be back in place, and all UN members will be required to obey them. (Of course the Russians and Chinese won’t, because they don’t give a **** about the UN and its laws when it doesn’t suit them, but the Europeans are all about “binding international law”, so they’ll have to.)
A point that may not be immediately apparent: None of the Israeli intel, or at least what’s been made public, proves that the Iranians are cheating on the deal. All it proves is that they’ve been lying for years, so there’s no reason to suppose they’ve stopped lying now.
Thus Mogherini’s explanation that the deal “isn’t based on assumptions of good faith or trust. It’s based on concrete commitments, verification mechanisms and a very strict monitoring of facts, done by IAEA” would be perfectly valid, were its assumptions true. If there really were reliable verification mechanisms and strict monitoring then it wouldn’t matter that the mullahs lie as easily as they tell the truth, just as the monitoring of a parolee’s leg tracker doesn’t depend on his honesty, and none of the new intel would change that.
But Mogherini seems not to know, or is pretending not to know, about the gaping holes in this so-called monitoring scheme, that render it a joke, like an agreement with a parolee that you must wear this tracker on your leg but you can take it off for an hour at a time whenever you want a shower or a swim. Just tell us you’re taking it off, and have it back on in an hour. But mind you don’t go anywhere without it, or we will be very cross! That’s about the level of the deal’s actual verification methods; we know for certain that they’re not doing anything wrong where the IAEA is looking, but it’s carefully not looking where the Iranians don’t want it to look.
–> That’s about the level of the deal’s actual verification methods; we know for certain that they’re not doing anything wrong where the IAEA is looking,
but it’s carefully not looking where the Iranians don’t want it to look. <–
Europe never seems to learn. This is their contemporary “Peace in our times” moment.
Trump should do what he did with the Paris accords and just pull out without worrying about France and Germany joining him.
Does anyone take the Paris Accords seriously without US backing? No, they are a joke now that Germany and France blather about for political reasons and the Iran deal can do the same. The US can cripple the Iranians sufficiently all by themselves and the Europeans will eventually lose international political clout increasingly as it becomes clear they are worthless to making deals work or not work and we will finally be rid of them as necessary partners dragging us back from action internationally.
He might pull out, but I think he is trying to get another deal of some sort in place. Trump has voiced his opposition to this joke of a deal, and seeing the moneys that other countries have made off this, as well as giving aid to Iran, shows that Obama was criminally incompetent or purposefully working to give Iran a favorable deal. Obama having Jarrett as puppet master behind the scenes explains his desires to help Iran, as she is Iranian by birth. Jarrett had also intimated that Obama would gain wealth. Along with that she intimated their enemies would pay. (Which explains the weaponizing of our Intelligence agencies, and the fallout of some of it as we are seeing now.)
What I want to know is how did Obama get that massive cash payout to Iran? A President doesn’t have a slush fund, otherwise the Wall would be under construction already. With it being over a billion in cash to Iran, where did those funds come from? Congress is in control of the purse strings, yet I don’t recall hearing anything about Congress passing this amount of spending to be given to Iran.
The deal was shady, and with Lurch being one of the ones making the deal, I have no faith in it having been done well. And seeing the Israeli report on the fraud Iran did, it was a “joke” to think it would go well. At best it was a means to kick the can down the road so blame would rest with a future administration, and we see that Iran has plans ready to go for building Nukes that they can put into place quickly. Was this poor deal done purposefully? In some ways I hope so, because if it wasn’t it was blindingly stupid.
Judging by the actions of European leaders over the past 3 years, did anyone really think they would come to the senses?
Netanyahu is trying to stampede us into a war with Iran. He has nukes and missiles that can deliver them. Let him attack Iran.
If there ever was a argument for the existence of ZOG, Netanyahu is making it.
Yes Israel has a ZOG. Is The Trump a fellow traveler?
And of course, not to mention that the security services of the USA all agree that Iran is not building a nuclear weapon and hasn’t had a nuclear weapons program for decades. So if our own agencies can’t even accuse those nasty Iranians (who dare to burn our flag!) then our threats of serious repercussions more sanctions is simply silly. And, of course, the war mongers and the israelis don’t want to read the IAEA reports either – it doesn’t fit their political objectives of total destruction of Iran.
Oh Ras you anti-semite!
Our agencies knew nothing of the Syrian reactor program either.
“it doesn’t fit their political objectives of total destruction of Iran.” What benefit does Israel get from destroying Iran?
If the answer is self-preservation from a country planning (promising) to destroy Israel then your argument is moot.
Our leftist/progressive elites have always operated under the same rubric of we are never wrong; it’s always somebody else’s fault – and usually that someone else is the current Two-Minutes Hate.
Er…EU…. EU must now stand for “Evil Union.”
The nations of the EU are just doing what Israel is doing, looking out for their own interests. It seems that the US is the only nation which feels that it has to sacrifice its own interests for other nations.
If the sanctions, or at least some of them, are reinstated [and they really should be], then Iran can not sell gas. If Iran can not sell gas, not only do energy costs rise in the EU, but the Russian’s influence there is not lessened and Iran can not pay for the big Airbus contract. There are a number of other existing contracts which the Iranians would also not be able to honor. On the plus side, Iranian financing of terrorism would also decline. Hezbollah would have to get more funding from the US via the Lebanese Army.
Realistically, sanctions would not stop Iran from continuing its nuclear weapons program.
The problem for the US is what to do if Israel actually attacks Iran. Not only would there likely be repercussions from the Arab Street, but it might also drag Turkey and Russian into any conflict. At the moment, the US is engaged, both overtly and covertly, in overthrowing the Assad regime in Syria. A conflict which has now brought in Russia, Iran, Turkey and Israel, as well as the US, the UK and France. 8 years of the Obama Administration’s policies have brought us to this point. And, there is really no good solution to any of these problems. There is very likely to be a regional war in the Middle East. And, without total US support, Israel is going to suffer greatly. And, if the Dems regain control of the Congress in January, there may not be the support for Israel which exists today.
or when his political power depends on his not understanding it.
All conservatives now recite: Global Warming is a Hoax!
The ideas of anthropomorphic global climate thingy IS a hoax.
It is also a global attempt to lower the standard of living for developed nations and you and I individually.
Here’s an idea; YOU live as though YOU believe it is true, and let me live as though I DON’T. You can even try to persuade me I’m wrong. But I’ll fight you if you try anything else.
You are a simpleton with a very complex line of BS.
If my standard of living is being diminished, it is hard for me to notice. Electricity generated by wind power seems to run this computer every bit as well as coal. Mass transit gets me where I want to go most of the time and I can read or watch the scenery. Nope, neither one is perfect or available 100% of the time, but then neither is any other solution.
I don’t believe abortion is a crime. So I, and those who believe as I do, are free to get abortions? The state of Texas shouldn’t be passing TRAP laws? eh?
You will fight? Duh! Why don’t you join the Tumptinistas, already? There aren’t enough of your kind to defend an anthill. The rest of the climate deniers are already in bed with Trump.
You missed the whole point of my post, anyway. I don’t mind the author quoting a socialist, but I do think it worthy of pointing out that conservatives follow their ideology rather than fact, too. Ted Cruz votes with Trump more than 90% of the time. Duh!
Anthropomorphic global warming is faith-based science. Believers in this theory assume that all global climate change, absent asteroid strikes, is caused by human activity. And, all of their theories of causation rely solely upon human actions. Since the 1880s, the mean temperature of the planet has gone through several cyclical changes. It went down from the levels in the 1890s, up in the 1920s and 1930s, back down from 1940-1973 and then up again until the 1990s, then down again until about 2010 and then up again at a slow pace. There has been a general upward trend since the 1400s, based upon extrapolated data. Proponents of anthropomorphic global warming point to the expansion of industry during this time to account for the general, slow increase in temperatures. However, the three decades from 1940 through 1973 are a huge anomaly. So, how to explain it. Aerosols. That is correct. According to anthropomorphic global warming adherents, increased aerosol usage, by human beings, caused the global cooling phenomenon. See the common thread here? Humans have to be responsible for climate change. So, then, what caused the so-called little ice age of the 1400s? There was no significant decrease in human greenhouse gas production, that we can tell. Or what about the previous glacial and inter-glacial ages, only one of which had any human habitation?
The fact is that anthropomorphic global warming is not about climatology, but about the importance of the human species in the universe. It assumes a human-centric universe where everything derives from the actions of the most important species in existence, humanity. It is incredibly more likely that global climate change is a product of various natural phenomena, such as solar activity, global axial tilt, irregularities in the Earth’s orbit, marine current changes, continental drift, internal temperature variations, spacial conditions near Earth’s orbit, or a combination of these things. The fact that it has become necessary for those holding to the theory of man-made global warming to produce inaccurate temperature measurements to support that theory does not bode well for its viability.
Now if one wants to use wind power or ride in electric vehicles or any of a dozen other things to curtail rising global temperatures, that is fine. But it sort of like the man who was wearing an elephant tail bracelet in Manhattan. When asked about it, he said that it was to keep wild elephants away. When the questioner pointed out there wasn’t a wild elephant for 8,000 miles, the man replied, “See how well it works?”.