Iran

Trump Should Resist Pressure to Drop Out of the Iran Deal

Ending the deal would clear the way for Iran's nuclear weapons program and increase the likelihood of war.

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CHINE NOUVELLE/SIPA/Newscom

This January, President Donald Trump issued a warning to France, Germany, the U.K., and every other party that negotiated the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), otherwise known as the Iran nuclear deal. If the weaknesses of the deal are not fixed by May 12 of this year, Trump declared, the economic sanction waivers that granted Tehran economic relief will not be signed again. "And if at any time I judge that such an agreement is not within reach," the president stated, "I will withdraw from the deal immediately."

Trump's warning was amplified on April 30, when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered a presentation about a trove of intelligence files recently acquired concerning Iran's nuclear program. Netanyahu, who was supported by visual aids, graphs, and a stack of documents prominently displayed for the cameras, was no doubt trying to capture Trump's attention about Iran's chronic duplicity and dishonesty.

Yet it would be diplomatic malpractice to walk away from the JCPOA at this time. Indeed, to tear up the nuclear deal would enable the very habitual lying that Netanyahu is worried about. We should be crystal clear about one thing: Were the nuclear agreement to disintegrate, the United States would be reverting back to the 2010-2012 time-period—a time when Iran had far more freedom to pursue its nuclear work and when the option of a preventive U.S. military strike on Tehran's nuclear facilities was considered a viable and even likely option.

The culmination of three years of intensive back-and-forth negotiations, the JCPOA is castigated by some as an inappropriate and dangerous giveaway to the mullahs in Tehran in exchange for temporary caps on its uranium enrichment and plutonium programs. Yet in the view of many others, the deal is a durable and stringent non-proliferation accord that prevents Iran from attaining threshold nuclear status by opening up its facilities to unconditional monitoring. Under either view, it is indisputable that the JCPOA kicked the military confrontation can down the road. To rip up the deal or walk away from it prematurely—even if the Trump administration does so after inconclusive talks with the Europeans on a "fix" by May 12—would in effect rewind the calendar right back to 2012. An imperfect nuclear agreement that the Iranians have nonetheless been complying with will thus have been sacrificed for political purposes, with the added cost of resurrecting the possibility of preventive military action by the U.S.

To be fair, we do not know for certain how Iran would react in the event the White House left the JCPOA. France, Germany, the U.K., and the European Union are exploring the option of maintaining their part of the deal in return for the Iranians keeping their commitments. However, given the dominance of the U.S. financial system, Tehran may conclude that they are entitled to full relief from nuclear-related sanctions as codified in the JCPOA and to which all parties agreed to. A far likelier response from Tehran would be a decision to begin enriching a larger stockpile of uranium at a level closer to weapons-grade, perhaps curtailing the IAEA's access to its facilities in the process. Were Iran to take such an action, the foreign policy establishment in Washington would perceive it as completely unacceptable under international non-proliferation norms and as grounds for possible punitive retaliation. It is not difficult to imagine an administration, confronted with bipartisan pressure and stocked with hawkish advisers, caving in to that pressure in order to destroy Iran's nuclear infrastructure—a contingency that would put U.S. troops in the region at greater risk of violent Iranian retaliation and severely undermine America's credibility with allies and partners.

This is not a situation the Trump administration should embrace. The Middle East has enough problems to cope with. A potential clash with the United States on one side and the Iranians and their network of proxy militias on the other would make the invasion of Iraq look like a minor blip in history.

Is there an exit ramp on this road towards confrontation? Yes, there is. But Washington will miss it if the Trump administration is not far more cognizant of the costs associated with a withdrawal from the JCPOA.

Iran is unquestionably a destabilizing actor in relation to its neighbors and to the region in general. This activity includes the violation of numerous U.N. Security Council resolutions; the breaking of arms embargoes; material support to regional terrorist groups; and an expansion of its military presence. None of these activities, though, will be addressed by unnecessarily putting at risk an agreement that the IAEA, the U.N., and the U.S. intelligence community have all verified is placing a wall between the Iranian government and a nuclear weapons program.

President Trump has defined his foreign policy as "principled realism," a welcome shift in direction from the hawkish liberal internationalism and neoconservatism of the past. Jettisoning a nuclear deal that is working, despite the problems buried in the text, would run counter to the realism embedded in the Trump administration's national security doctrine. And it may very well put the United States in the position of fighting a fourth war in the Middle East, a possibility the American people are neither prepared for nor willing to support.

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  1. An imperfect nuclear agreement that the Iranians have nonetheless been complying with will thus have been sacrificed for political purposes, with the added cost of resurrecting the possibility of preventive military action by the U.S.

    First of all, they have not been complying with it. The documents show that they have an enormous weapons complex that is in violation of the agreement. Second, even if you ignore that, the only reason to think they have been complying with anything is that the Iranians say they have. Well, we know now that they have been lying about pretty much everything during this entire process. So, what reason is there to think they are not lying now?

    All staying in this agreement will do is allow the Iranians to violate it while claiming to be in compliance. The documents make it clear that Iran has both the capability and the ability to build nuclear weapons. The only question is when they decide to do that and if the rest of the world is going to allow it to happen. And the answer to that has little or nothing to do with whether the US continues to adhere to this sham agreement.

    The documents make complete fools out of the backers of the JCPOA, of which reason was one. And yet, Reason seems intent on being made fools of again.

    1. Stop trying to fuck the world because you’re too stupid not to get your news from somewhere other than the president’s mouthpieces.

      All leaving the agreement will do is give Iran the go-ahead to develop nukes. Right? Do you not agree with that?

      This hasn’t been thought through. It’s just another in a long line of Trump idiocy with the logic “Obama did it, therefore it is bad.”

      1. Tony who pimps war with Russia because he’s butt hurt over an election is trying to pretend like he’s sober minded.

        Tony and John are two flavors of warmonger.

        1. People who claim that actual war with Russia is the only alternative to just giving Russia whatever they want are regurgitating known Russian bullshit talking points from the election. So you’re only making my case on that.

          Nobody wants war with Russia. Not even Hillary, Jill Stein. But thanks for making a bunch of moronic college kids think so, because what we got is so much better.

          1. Like I said, two flavors of warmonger. Is a choice between John McCain and Hillary Clinton really a choice?

            Trust Fund Tony and his soy boy pals think so.

            1. When did John McCain and Hillary Clinton run against each other?

              The idea that Democrats wanted war with Russia is a Russian talking point meant to a) help elect Donald Trump and b) Convince Americans to take Russia’s side in Syria and Ukraine, basically let them get away with whatever they want. You know, because literally the only alternative is nuclear holocaust.

              1. Hillary said she would shoot down Russian jets in Syria.

                Wars get started when you shoot down other nation’s airplanes.

                1. Trump just bombed Russians in Syria.

                  1. And I would put good money on you masturbating to the images of the bombs flying.

                    Why go through life being so fucking useless? Do you even want to have an original thought, or are you just fine how you are?

                  2. Tony|5.1.18 @ 12:30PM|#
                    Trump just bombed Russians in Syria.

                    You have a citation for that, I am sure.

              2. It strikes me that you never actually listened to Hillary Clinton, you just projected a bunch of stuff you wish a politician thought onto her and ran with it.

                1. So we’re all practically beside ourselves now that Trump has intervened in Syria against Russia, that thing that was the equivalent to starting WWIII when Hillary proposed it as a hypothetical? Right?

                  1. Yeah, actually a lot of us are mad that he did that although notably Trump didn’t shoot down Russian aircraft he ordered a bunch of buildings get blown up. It’s not quite the same thing, but they’re both in the same general category of ‘shouldn’t be doing it at all without the consent of Congress’.

                    The thing that’s odd is that you’re not excited Trump did something that Hillary thought would be a great idea. It’s almost like you have no positions, but just take the opposing view from Republicans.

                    1. I’ve not stated my view on Syria policy or whether I even have one. I appreciate that a presidential election is a choice between two people whose views nobody will agree with 100%. (Except people like John and loveconstitution who take whatever brainfart Trump lets loose on Twitter as the gospel of the universe, no matter what it is.)

                      The point is the hysteria about Hillary and Syria was stirred up disingenuously by people with a partisan agenda, and you’re a victim of that.

                    2. …I don’t know what to tell you other than Hillary Clinton was in favor of military intervention all over the Middle East, and she was in no way a ‘peace’ candidate. None of the ‘peace’ candidates made it out of the Republican primary, and there were none of the Democratic ticket.

                    3. Aw Tony, its really does not matter what trump says but what he does.

                      Trump’s full extent of new US military commitments include adding 4000 troops to Afghanistan and beefing up US forces supporting rebels in Syria. That’s it. In over 1 year as president, Trump has not gotten the US involved in any new wars. Obama can not say that. Booosh cannot say that. Clinton can not say that.

                      I hope Trump “wins” and gets most of our forces withdrawn from war and the withdrawn from overseas bases too.

                  2. Tony|5.1.18 @ 12:36PM|#
                    So we’re all practically beside ourselves now that Trump has intervened in Syria against Russia, that thing that was the equivalent to starting WWIII when Hillary proposed it as a hypothetical? Right?

                    Hey Tony, why would Trump bomb Russians if he is their puppet?

                    That wacky logic you lefties are using seems to have some gaps the size of the Grand Canyon.

                    1. I can’t help you if you don’t keep up with news.

                    2. Aw Tony, cannot back up what he says.

                      Go to FOX Tony, you’re always on there anyways.

                    3. I love the way that somehow $100,000.00 in Facebook ads somehow gave President Trump the White House.

                    4. Yet the $100K that Trump gave Hillary For President 2008 supposedly doesn’t matter.

                  3. Tony, are you really this fucking stupid? Do I actually need to explain to you the difference between establishing a no fly zone and shooting down Russian jets compared to what Trump did?

                    That isn’t a rhetorical question. And I am very capable of explaining it if you say yes.

                    1. Between Hillary and Trump only Trump has killed Russians in Syria.

                      So should we prepare for WWIII or not?

          2. They’re agitating for war with Russia with their idiotic and irresponsible rhetoric and behaviour.

            Squawking about the ‘hacking the elections’ angle is not a good reason to piss off Russia.

            1. And if Russia helped elect Hillary, you’d obviously be here with the same opinion, just leave it alone, we wouldn’t want to piss Russia off! In fact, let them just have Alaska while we’re at it!

              1. I wish you would just shut-up Tony. Some of us actually oppose eliminating the Iran deal, because of the consequences. We’re the same people who don’t think arming Ukraine or engaging in a proxy war in Syria to troll the Russians is good policy either.

                You just don’t want the Iran deal to end, because above all else Obama’s terrible legacy must be preserved. You’re such a garbage progressive

                1. So you really think that all the rightwingers here would be so deferential to Russia if they helped Hillary win instead? When did deference to Russia–to the point of doing nothing as they invade sovereign countries–become a rightwing thing? Or a libertarian thing? It’s certainly new to me.

                  1. Like I said, the positions of you and John are basically a choice between John McCain and Hillary Clinton.

                    1. US foreign policy is always going to be tied down to a spectrum of norms. They are perhaps so firmly established that not even Trump can get around them (as was demonstrated with the tepid “proportional” bombing in Syria).

                      But that’s if we’re lucky. When people start getting radical ideas, we invade Iraq looking for invisible WMDs. That was McCain’s team who did that, by the way.

                    2. Remember when we use to pretend that progressives shared our views with regards to foreign policy? That was such a stupid belief for us to hold, in hindsight.

                    3. You mean before you bought into a bunch of propagandistic horseshit meant to convince you of the absurdity that Democrats prolly would have done the Iraq war exactly the same and stuff like that?

                      We have plenty of modern contrasts to go by. You are entitled as a libertarian to be mad that neither is perfect though, as you are utopians. I would urge perspective though, as nevertheless you are in the real world.

                    4. Factually speaking, the majority of Democrats did in fact vote to go to war with Iraq and war belongs to them just like it belongs to the Republicans That’s how votes to go to war work. They also supported all the other conflicts we’ve been involved in since then.

                      They’ve learned to just stop voting on wars and let the President do whatever they want to avoid culpability more recently, though.

                      Now, of course, when they’re out of power they suddenly want to rewrite the past two decades.

                    5. Well you only get two choices. So is voting for authorization worse than calling for the war and perpetrating it far beyond what anyone who made that vote intended?

                    6. “So is voting for authorization worse than calling for the war and perpetrating it far beyond what anyone who made that vote intended?”

                      Says the guy that starts and ends every policy position with his idealistic intentions.

                    7. “I would urge perspective though, as nevertheless you are in the real world.”

                      Meanwhile you, Tony, are literally psychotic.

      2. Tony is used to lying, so the Iranians lying is no big deal for him.

        1. Tony fantasizes about the Iranians exterminating Israel.

      3. All leaving the agreement will do is give Iran the go-ahead to develop nukes. Right?

        Which they wouldn’t do anyway, unless they were threatened enough into doing it.

    2. Pretty much. We gave them tons of ‘their’ cash back so now they not only have their secret nuclear program they’ve lied about, specifically to get their cash back, but they also have the cash to pursue it faster.

      The question remains: Did Obama know they were lying, or are Israeli intelligence services that much better than our own?

      Well, I think the answer is pretty obvious there. Obama’s foreign policy was a nonsensical combination of bombing the fuck out of people and appeasement. I guess he flipped a coin on Iran and it came up appeasement. I’m sure Europe making a boatload of cash off the deal has nothing to do with their support of it.

      I haven’t seen anyone make a real case for why we shouldn’t pull out of a deal that was clearly signed in bad faith. Everyone seems to be glossing over the bit where Iran didn’t honor their end of the deal. I guess we should hope they don’t alter the deal further?

      1. Tony will be required to wear the baby’s bonnet and clown shoes while riding the unicycle because he was praying that that the deal was altered further.

      2. “The question remains: Did Obama know they were lying, or are Israeli intelligence services that much better than our own?”

        To steal a line from Selena Meyer, LEGACY!

    3. I agree. I use to agree with these dolts — once upon a time. I’ve seen that far to many of the things they say sound good — on paper.

    4. What “documents?”

  2. The “iran deal” was, much like the Paris accords, diplomacy for the sake of diplomacy.

    They were agreements which had no enforcible elements, nor any objective, verifiable criteria which would clearly make any party violate the terms.

    They’re diplomatic charades.

    No, you shouldn’t encourage them.

    1. And what’s the course of action if the US leaves the deal?

      1. Go back to sanctions and kick Iran out of the international community again. It is going to be very hard to unscrew the mess Obama left. But, no longer pretending this deal means anything is a start.

        1. And I’m sure the US backtracking on a deal would not raise alarms with the North Koreans in their negotiations with us. And certainly our European allies will join with us in isolating Iran, even though it doesn’t appear as though they will.

          1. It only sends a bad message if North Korea isn’t intending on honoring their end of the deal, but a lot of people seem to assume they won’t honor their end of the deal but we should still make one with them anyway.

            What’s the point?

            1. Exactly this. The message it would send to North Korea is that we are no longer in the business of honoring agreements when the other party doesn’t.

            2. I had a Trumphumper earlier today claim that I wanted peace with North Korea to fail because I said I’d bet folding money that the peace deal with NK would be a laugh by 2020. I told him that lying like that is why everyone hates the Trumphumpers.

              1. That yo italo like that means you’re an idiot of no credibility. The fact is that Trump is fairly popular, unlike what your progtard media pals puke out every day, along with a million other lies.

          2. The message is that if you make a deal with the United States, don’t try and secretly fuck America because we have had it with that stuff. The USA will find out and protect our interests.

          3. And I’m sure the US backtracking on a deal would not raise alarms with the North Koreans in their negotiations with us.

            Backing out of a non-binding “deal” that’s literally unsupported by the American people isn’t a concern I have.

            1. And that is in no way a ratified treaty thanks to Obama’s flouting of the constitution.

        2. Your argument is wishful thinking untethered from reality

          1. Stop projecting. You are the one sitting here thinking this deal will mean anything and the Iranians will abide by it if only we wish hard enough. What the fuck is the matter with you? Why stay in a deal everyone knows is a lie and that the other party has no intention of honoring?

            1. I think the reason is clear: because it’s more important to a lot of people to say we have a deal than it is to have a deal that actually does anything or is even followed by the other party.

              It’s like people assume that since America violated so many of it’s treaties and agreements in the past (RE: Basically any agreement made with the Indians) that we should always stick to our ends of every agreement even when it’s clear the other party doesn’t really give a shit about the terms.

              Basically, Iran knows that their business is too profitable for other nations to go along with sanctions anymore and this ‘agreement’ is the fig leave they tried to pin up to hide their obvious pursuit of nuclear intercontinental ballistic missiles.

              1. It is going to be a real mess fixing this. But, like I said, lying and pretending that Iran is abiding by this or the deal means anything is not the thing to do. Let’s start by telling the truth and facing reality as it is. What we do as a result of that we can debate. But to me only idiots who either out of their desire to save Obama’s legacy or think words have magic effects on the world could think staying with this agreement and lying to ourselves is a good idea.

                1. The thing is there is no fixing it, and both sides seem to ignore that central fact.

                  Iran is going to continue pursuing nuclear intercontinental ballistic missiles, but absolutely no one at all (other than probably Israel) is interested in doing the things that would make them stop so they make bullshit agreements they know won’t be honored because it has the appearance of ‘doing something’.

                  Basically politicians know that the only thing that would probably stop Iran is war and missiles, but since that’s off the table for a lot of reasons they fuck around pretending that their bloviation has an effect. It doesn’t, and probably never will.

                  I suspect that Israel is going to do something about this on their own, with or without international support, so assuming the deal doesn’t also result in war is probably premature at best. I suspect the best we might be able to hope for is that just Israel and Iran go to war.

                2. The only potentially good way out is for the people of Iran to rise up and overthrow their own government.

              2. Oh, and both the Democrat and Republican parties (in the Senate at least) are super lucky Trump won the election because now they can hang this debacle around his neck instead of taking any credit for this cluster fuck themselves. Democrats are probably luckier, though, since ultimately if Hillary had won this would have been a big black eye for the entire party.

                It’s the literal reason why they’re happy to leave these things up to the President, rather than doing their jobs. Deniability is the name of the game. They can support the Iran deal while publically saying Trump is doing the right thing, or not support the deal and say Trump is doing the wrong thing. There’s no downside since you can’t really pin them down on the subject by votes.

          2. Do you really think ignoring blatant violations of our last negotiated treaty puts us in a better position with North Korea?

            1. To the left it does. They love getting the USA into agreements that everyone breaks.

              The left is mad that Trump might work out an agreement with China and North Korea that works because all parties follow the terms.

  3. Iran is unquestionably a destabilizing actor in relation to its neighbors and to the region in general. This activity includes the violation of numerous U.N. Security Council resolutions; the breaking of arms embargoes; material support to regional terrorist groups; and an expansion of its military presence. None of these activities, though, will be addressed by unnecessarily putting at risk an agreement that the IAEA, the U.N., and the U.S. intelligence community have all verified is placing a wall between the Iranian government and a nuclear weapons program.

    These documents show that these organizations assessments have been completely wrong for years. Yet, somehow we are supposed to believe them now. And the irony of reason suddenly deciding the US IC is competent and trustworthy should be lost on no one.

    1. No joke. If evidence is presented that we believed lies, it doesnt make sense to double down on it.

    2. Just like we are suppose to believe Netyanbooboo who has been saying for over 20 years that Iran is “just 6 months from making a bomb”

  4. The fly-overs and the deplorables lack the cognitive raw material to understand the inherent cognitive dissonance of the President’s oft expressed intention to jettison Neo-Cohen inspired international meddling and his pavlovian loyalty to the interests of the Jewish state, including pounding the war drums regarding Iran.

    1. I can’t read his mind. But the fact that Iran makes no secret of its desire to build nukes and use them to destroy first Isreal and then us, makes them a problem even if they are Isreal’s problem too. These idiots are not our friends and they are no one we want having nukes.

      1. Iran makes no secret of its desire to build nukes

        Please provide a link with some evidence that Iran has a publicly acknowledged desire to build nuclear weapons.

        1. Isreal has literally a half a ton of Iranian documents that say they do. And Iran’s actions over the last 20 years say they do. If they don’t want nukes, why do they want to enrich their own Uranium?

          I get it that Muslims are sacred to Libertarians. But they are capable of mal intent.

  5. If Trump dumps the deal Rand is going to look like a chump.

    Pat Buchanan had a good article about the consequences of leaving the Iran nuclear deal last week in The American Conservative. It was a “good Pat” article because he only talked about foreign policy.

  6. Wow. Just a year ago I was called a “jew hater” by the commentariat for supporting the JCPOA. Oh how times have changed!

    1. Some people here are very selective about when a restrained foreign policy should be employed. SAD

      1. Having a restrained foreign policy does not mean we have to let Iran lie to us and stay in an agreement that does nothing except give them cover to build nukes. Why do you insist on pushing the same false dichotomy here?

        1. There was nothing new here. We knew all along that they were trying to get a nuke and they were lying when they denied it. But the fact is, they stopped and since then have been compliant. JCPOA should stand.

          1. What do you base this on?

            The intel services that have been wrong this whole time?

  7. Someone on the news this morning made an interesting point. President Macron had to be the one to explain this to American journalists: Trump is actually easy to figure out. Just listen to what he said on the campaign trail. He won’t deviate. Or he won’t be seen as deviating. So the best course is to get Trump to think he’s meeting his dumbass knee-jerk campaign promise will still maintaining something in the way of stability and progress. So “renegotiate” the deal while leaving the nuclear checks in place, or something. Or “save the idiot from himself,” as his chief of staff puts it.

    1. Yet, you lefties have not been able to stay ahead of Trump. That says a lot about lefties like you. You cannot even best a guy that “is easy to figure out”.

      1. What do you mean by that? Lefties are winning congressional seats in districts Trump won by 20 points. He’s not doing well dude.

        1. Which congressional districts, Tony?

          The left lost special elections in Georgia, Kansas, Montana, Utah, Arizona, and South Carolina. Democrats won PA18.

          Trump is doing better now than in 2016 which is why you lefties are so scared.

          1. “Which congressional districts, Tony?”

            The ones in Tony’s progressive fan fiction where Hillary is installed as Fuehrer, and christians are put in concentration camps. Which allows Tony’s militant gay communist NAMBLA friends to lower the ago of consent for boys to 10.

  8. You people who want war with Iran are unhinged. How has Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Afghanistan, etc worked out for us? Do people really trust the govt of Israel any more than the US govt?

    Iran sucks, but sanctions have not toppled the regime in the past. Why not open trade with them, keep the treaty in place, continue to monitor them, and only act when necessary? And what is the current threat level of Iran when compared to us or even Israel?

    1. Since when does not wanting to go to war mean we have to continue to be in an agreement that they won’t honor? There is a middle ground between going to war and just lying and pretending reality is something other than what it is.

      1. Where are you getting the idea that Iran is not honoring the nuclear deal? And you want the US to respond by… not honoring the nuclear deal?

        1. The 1000 lbs of documents the Israelis stole say they are not, you fucking half-wit. Face it, Obama was either too stupid to understand what was going on or just didn’t give a fuck. Either way, this thing is a disaster. Stop trying to gaslight us and pretend otherwise.

          1. The only source for Iran’s bad faith is fucking Netanyahu. Let’s meet in the middle and confirm that claim with a more reliable source before the US does the thing you claim is so terrible… not honoring the deal. How about it?

            You don’t even know what the fuck you’re talking about do you?

            1. Yes Tony, the evil Jews. And the US intel community agrees that these documents are real. They are what they are. Take your anti Semitic ad homonym and go fuck yourself. No one doubts that these documents are real.

              1. You’ve got to be fucking kidding me.

                Saying Netanyahu is biased against Iran is antisemitic now. Well that’s certainly the hallmark of an iron-clad argument.

                Jesus Christ what a moron.

                1. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, until last week director of the CIA, said Monday that Israel’s newly released package of intelligence on an Iranian nuclear weapons program was authentic and much of it was new to US experts.

                  Pompeo met Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday at Israeli military headquarters and was briefed on the material, which was released as Washington’s new top diplomat flew home.

                  “We’ve known about this material for a while and we certainly discussed this material yesterday when we were together,” Pompeo told reporters on his plane.

                  “It’s been something that’s been in the works for a while. I know that there are people talking about these documents not being authentic. I can confirm with you, for you, that these documents are real, they are authentic.”

                  http://www.france24.com/en/201…..new-pompeo

                  If the IC didn’t agree with Pompeo on that, they would be leaking like crazy this morning. They are not. No one doubts these documents are real. You are just making a bigger fool of yourself than usual.

                  1. And what do the documents say? Surely you know, since you are aware of what the fuck you’re talking about and aren’t simply following Trump around like a goddamn traumatized poodle.

                    (They don’t say that Iran has restarted work on nuclear weapons.)

                    1. So we’ve now gone from ‘Iran isn’t working on nuclear weapons at all’ to ‘we always knew they were working on nuclear weapons, but they double-pinky swore they stopped’.

                      Interesting.

                    2. Well, Tony does lie like he breathes.

                    3. Haven’t you been listening? The docs say that Iran has never followed the deal and has a secret site the inspectors don’t know about where they continue to work on a weapon.

                      But you won’t believe anything your progressive masters haven’t ordered you to believe. .

                2. Really I’m not so sure it’s anti-Semitism but rather than your average run-of-mill idiot ad hominem.

                  You don’t attack the documents, you attack the presenter. That’s pretty cut and dried.

                  It’s probably just coincidence that your attack is ‘he’s a Jew, so he hates Iran’. I mean, Iran hates them because they’re Jews so…I guess both sides suck? Notably you’re taking the side that hates Jews in this case, but it’s neither here nor there. Israel isn’t immune from criticism just because it’s a Jewish state, for sure.

                3. Aw Tony, Israel is the outlet for this info to be made public.

                  Israel is often the means to get classified info to the public to support things when some of it came from US intel. It allows the president from having to declassify material and keeps the bad guys guessing how Israel got it.

                4. Tony, you are the stupidest piece of shit imaginable. So stop impugning the intelligence of real humans and go back to your blowbang. You really are truly loathsome evil trash.

              2. I will not speak for tony, but I never said anything about evil Jews. However, I do not trust Netanyahu nor US intelligence to tell me the truth about Iran, particularly when they’ve been trying to find an excuse to destroy Iran for, well, a long time.

                How recent is it that Iran is working on nuclear weapons? My understanding is that their weapons program was never really that advanced, and that they are respecting the deal. There are weapons inspectors in country.

                Obama was a shitty president, but that doesn’t instantly nullify the value of the deal with Iran.

                1. I will not speak for tony, but I never said anything about evil Jews. However, I do not trust Netanyahu nor US intelligence to tell me the truth about Iran, particularly when they’ve been trying to find an excuse to destroy Iran for, well, a long time.

                  Why would they lie about this? It is admitting that they were totally wrong about Iran for the last 20 years. It makes them look utterly foolish. Why on earth would the IC lie and say that fake documents are real when doing so makes them look like fools? Moreover, if these documents are fake, it will be very obvious to anyone who sees them. So, lying and pretending they are would just make the IC look even more foolish. You don’t believe them because you don’t like what they are saying. Well, that is nice but the circumstances make it very unlikely that they are lying. It is what it is. The documents are real. it is not like this is any surprise.

                  1. http://www.theamericanconserva…..kes-again/

                    Since we’re throwing around links

                    1. From your link:


                      What Netanyahu failed to say was that Iran backed up its denial by discussing the organization structures alleged to be part of the Amad Project in detail with the IAEA. Moreover, the IAEA conclusion “that, before the end of 2003, an organizational structure was in place in Iran suitable for the coordination of a range of activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device” indicates that it was well aware of the possibility, if not probability, that Iran was not being fully forthcoming regarding its nuclear past, and yet opted to certify Iran as being compliant with the “Roadmap for Clarification of Past and Present Outstanding Issues.” Netanyahu’s presentation does not alter this outcome whatsoever.

                      So, yes, everyone knew they were lying and overlooked it to make a deal. Or, at the very least, suspected they might be lying but decided to trust them anyway.

                  2. Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot, the chief of staff of the Israel Defence Forces, told the Haaretz newspaper in March that despite “all its faults,” the Iran agreement “is working.”

                    (That’s the top military person in Israel. If you think the US should simply take Netanyahu’s PowerPoint show at face value, you are too stupid to have America’s interest at heart.)

                    1. Who gives a shit Tony. That doesn’t make these documents any less authentic.

                    2. But what do they authentically say? You don’t know, do you?

                2. “I do not trust Netanyahu nor US intelligence to tell me the truth about Iran, particularly when they’ve been trying to find an excuse to destroy Iran for, well, a long time.”

                  Yes.

                  “Obama was a shitty president, but that doesn’t instantly nullify the value of the deal with Iran.”

                  I would say that that does not nullify the consequences of exiting the deal. There were shortcomings in the agreement, no doubt.

                  1. Look Just Saying, the documents are real. I don’t’ give a shit what you think about Isreal. But stop denying the truth. The documents are real and they show Iran has lied about everything from the very beginning. We can debate about what to do about that. But stop pretending that things are not as they are.

                    1. I have nothing against Israel and that talking point needs to end. In light of some of President Obama’s staff members’ curious positions toward the Jewish state since leaving office, I think it’s fair to say that some of them do hold some antisemitic views. I’ll grant you that. But, that does not mean that people who oppose ditching this deal want to preserve it just to endanger Israel.

                      I’m telling you that the notion that Iran is not adhering to the deal is a disputed point of fact. There are no upsides to abandoning this deal, but there are a lot of downsides.

                    2. Between you (no war with Russia, but war with Iran) and Tony (war with Russia, but no war with Iran) there is an unbelievable amount of inconsistency.

                    3. See, there you go. You need to believe I (and my cohort) want war with Russia so you can maintain this sense of above-it-all self-righteousness that you mistake for intelligence.

                      I don’t want war with Russia. Nobody does. It’s an absurd claim.

                      Whether John wants to see a bunch of Muslims vaporized is another question.

                    4. What exactly did you think a no-fly zone in Syria would lead to you numbskull?

                    5. So your Syria policy is hands-off, let Assad do whatever he wants? Fine, it’s a position. Just maybe don’t be so quick to jump on a moral high horse about it, because your way gets a lot of people killed too.

                    6. Tony|5.1.18 @ 1:16PM|#
                      See, there you go. You need to believe I (and my cohort) want war with Russia so you can maintain this sense of above-it-all self-righteousness that you mistake for intelligence.
                      I don’t want war with Russia. Nobody does. It’s an absurd claim.
                      Whether John wants to see a bunch of Muslims vaporized is another question.

                      A bunch of Muslims want to see Americans vaporized.

                      The very fact that Tony is against exiting the Iran deal is reason for the USA to exit the deal based on the violations by Iran.

                      Tony and his cohort’s positions are so not in American interests, that America should do the opposite nearly 100% of the time. Whatever Tony says, do the opposite.

                    7. You’ve read through the hundreds of pounds of documents? You must have some access and one hell of a security clearance! You’re not Israeli, by any chance?

                      While It is true that Israel says the documents are true, I don’t take them at their word and I’m not a fast reader anyway. No, for me, it took hearing it from the CIA. I know they serve my best interests and are widely known as honest beyond reproach. Hell, once this war kicks off I think I’ll reenlist!

                    8. There’s not going to be a war. More likely we go back to squeezing them financially and quietly encouraging an internal revolt against their despotic government. As they have been more or less on the verge of a revolution for the last fifteen years.

                3. The deal itself is valueless to begin with.

    2. A treaty is more dangerous than not having treaties since eventually someone will have to act to enforce the treaty, without it we can ignore them. not having a treaty does not automatically mean war just look at all the treaties that have caused war in the past

      1. That is a great point Ron. They are violating this treaty. Staying in it means we either admit we don’t hold people to treaties or go to war to enforce it. Staying in the treaty makes war more likely.

        1. How are they violating the deal? Be specific. Don’t just say “documents.” When did Iran restart its nuclear program? Quote the documents where it says so.

    3. “You people who want war with Iran are unhinged.”

      That Barack Obama convinced so many people that the alternative to Iran enriching their own uranium was war are delusional.

      Does the term “false dilemma” mean anything to you?

      Another “alternative” to Iran enriching their own uranium is Iran abiding by the NPT treaty. Why is that so hard to conceptualize?

      Talk about people being victims of the media!

    4. “Iran sucks, but sanctions have not toppled the regime in the past”

      Sanctions were actually pretty damn close to toppling the regime, then the Obama administration relieved those sanctions as a “good faith” gesture when they came to the negotiating table. Yes, the administration granted immediate concessions and followed up with pallets of cash.
      Iran has seen strong, widespread revolutionary movements in 2009 and just a few months ago. The regime was on life support until Obama propped it up. They are not as secure as you claim.
      “This deal or war. And we all know the US doesn’t have the stomach for war.” -Obama style negotiation.

      1. The point of the sanctions wasn’t to topple the regime.

        The point of the sanctions was to drive them to the negotiating table.

        The point of the sanctions was ultimately to make them comply with the terms of the NPT.

        Effectively giving them a permanent exemption–despite their misbehavior–was fucking treasonous.

        1. I don’t think there can be an even relatively stable middle east with Iran’s regime in place. I don’t think we should directly topple the regime, but we certainly shouldn’t do anything to help it (like taking out Iran and Afghanistan, but that ship has sailed).
          Trump handled the recent revolution appropriately, based on my limited knowledge of what was going on, which basically was limited moral support. Obama’s silence during the 2009 green revolution, especially followed by his (instigation) support for the Arab spring, is suspicious. His “deal” and the way he sold it to us was, as you say, treasonous.
          Sanctions to bring them to the table is smart. Sanctions relief just for showing up sets bad precedent. But hey, at least we got their diplomats to stop screaming at Kerry when we asked them to.

          1. There’s a Simpsons episode in which the US prints a billion or something $ bill to pay for Europe after WWII. They give it to Mr. Burns to take over there, but he absconds with it. In present day, for reasons, Homer and Bart and Burns flee the country and go to Cuba for refuge, intending to rely on the value of the bill for welcome.
            Cut to scene of Castro meeting with his comrades. “It’s time we face it: Communism isn’t working out. We gave it good run, but we have no money left! Call the Americans and tell them they won.” But then his secretary comes in and tells him there’s a rich American to see him. Castro meets with Burns and asks if he may hold the billion $ bill.
            Butns: “Can I have my bill back now?”
            Castro: “What bill?”
            Cut to Burns, Homer, and Bart on a raft floating back to the US…

            1. Nerdz, I’d say that is a pretty close approximation.

  9. its a bad deal done in secret that Iran has already violated get out of it

  10. We should depopulate Iran by welcoming everyone there as a refugee.

    1. Or break them financially by rounding up all our progressives and sending them to Iran. With no money or resources. I’m sure that an influx of millions of whiney entitled progressives will break their regime within a year.

  11. There are a lot of people here who embrace the Cathy Young version of foreign policy: “pretend like you don’t want an aggressive foreign policy overseas, but then find every excuse imaginable to wage war overseas”.

    “Iran isn’t complying with the deal”

    The IAEA begs to differ

    http://www.theamericanconserva…..kes-again/

    Narrative fail

    1. The link states that maybe the IAEA thought there was a chance they were working on nukes before the deal, but they decided to act like they were not. The question is are they right this time, when they were wrong last time.

  12. “Ending the deal would clear the way for Iran’s nuclear weapons program and increase the likelihood of war.”

    I fail to see how anyone could achieve this conclusion with reason. If anything increases the likelihood of war, it’s Iran enriching their own uranium.

    The mutual assured destruction era of the cold war was not an era without wars. The cold war was a never-ending slew of proxy wars that didn’t cease until the Soviet Union collapsed. If you want to see that happen with even more gusto in the Middle East, by all means, let Iran go on enriching their own uranium–that’s an excellent way to make sure that the region remains a battle ground for proxy wars forever more.

    1. If anything increases the likelihood of war, it’s Iran enriching their own uranium.

      You mean, engaging in legally permitted development of a peaceful nuclear program that the global community has nonetheless decided to proscribe?

      The U.S. will likely not bomb Iran. Not immediately. That’s what Netanyahu’s for. He’s already bombing Iran surrogates in Syria, he’s just itching for an excuse to bust some bunkers in Iran. That’s why reaching the JCPOA was so important; it undercut the drumbeat for unilateral military action within Israel. Take it away, and Netanyahu will act. Pompeo has already started rolling over for that corrupt sociopath.

  13. Bibi’s agenda was to turn Israel into a ‘democratic’ theocracy to rival Iran’s clerical theocracy. However he will fail, ironically in part because his ultra-religious base is starting to turn against him, e.g. with IDF conscription. So I don’t think he will succeed here. Trump will have to back down again, despite the support of Bolton and Pompeo, and it will be humiliating.

  14. Ending the deal would clear the way for Iran’s nuclear weapons program and increase the likelihood of war.

    You mean the nuclear weapons they’ve been pursuing the entire fucking time?

    C’mon, guys, are we really going going back to the 80s and telling the President he should avert his eyes when a bully walks through the room?

  15. “We should be crystal clear about one thing: Were the nuclear agreement to disintegrate, the United States would be reverting back to the 2010-2012 time-period?a time when Iran had far more freedom to pursue its nuclear work and when the option of a preventive U.S. military strike on Tehran’s nuclear facilities was considered a viable and even likely option.”

    Are you unclear on where Iran stood at the time in terms of its nuclear agreements?

    If we went back to a time before Obama’s agreement, Iran would be subject to the protocols of the NPT. According to those protocols, Iran forfeited its right to enrich its own uranium–because it violated the treaty.

    There is no reason why Iran could not procure uranium that has been sufficiently enriched for civilian purposes from elsewhere in the world. Iran has no right to enrich its own uranium according to the NPT, and if we went back in time to that agreement, the only thing that would put Iran in jeopardy of being attacked by the U.S. would be if they enriched their own uranium in violation of the NPT.

    P.S. Why is there no mention of the fact that Obama’s agreement–which supersedes the thoroughly constitutional NPT–is completely unconstitutional?

    1. The world community will give you low enriched uranium if you just ask for it. The only condition is that you agree to IAEC inspections to show that you are not enriching it yourself or building nukes. The fact that Iran insisted on the right to enrich uranium itself is pretty much proof positive they had a nuclear weapons program because there is literally no other reason to enrich uranium yourself when you can get it for free from the IAE.

      1. We (the United States) offered to give them enriched uranium ourselves at one point. They could certainly procure uranium that’s been enriched for civilian purposes from Russia.

        The NPT was very specific about no one being allowed to enrich uranium in secret, and Iran violated the NPT in that way in outrageous fashion. By the protocols of the treaty, Iran was was stripped of their right to enrich their own uranium because of their having violated the treaty, and there is no good reason why they should ever be allowed to enrich their own uranium again.

        This was one of Obama’s self-sacrifice deals, where the agreement wasn’t intended to benefit the United States or its allies. The agreement was meant to tie the hands of future presidents and make it harder for them to attack Iran. That’s all it is.

      2. I think people should realize, too, that if we were in a MAD situation with Iran (which has already successfully launched multistage rockets and has an advanced space program), there’s no reason to assume that it will end without a bang like the Cold War. There are far worse outcomes than President X and his or her allies retaliating against Iran for violating the NPT–and the worst are outcomes where Tehran has nuclear ICBMs that can hit the U.S. Why wait for that to happen? The point of the NPT (and its enforcement) is precisely to prevent those situations from arising in the first place.

        If and when Iran develops nuclear weapons, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Turkey will all want and get them, too. Anyone who thinks they’re preventing a catastrophe by letting Iran enrich their own uranium is pathetically naive.

        1. Are you willing to go to war to ensure that Iran has no nukes?

          Are you willing to further bankrupt your kids and your grandkids so that Iran gets no nukes?

          Are you willing to pay substantially higher gasoline and home heating oil prices so that Iran gets no nukes?

          Are you willing to understand that the best defense against American jihad is having nukes?

          Are you willing to accept that it is the US that has had a history of meddling in the internal governance of Iran and not the other way around?

          Are you willing to remove the Empire’s propaganda blindfold off of your eyes?

          1. What an absurd list of questions!

            All of these things were prevented without going to war by the NPT and its peaceful enforcement.

            Why this false dichotomy arises all the time is a mystery.

            Iran had burned through all their foreign reserves and was suffering inflation at Weimar Republic levels. That’s why they came to the bargaining table–and that was a result of all the parties to the NPT (including Russia) imposing sanctions because they violated the treaty.

            Because Barack Obama gave away the farm for no good reason doesn’t mean that he saved us from war.

            Because Barack Obama chose to let them off the hook does not mean that Iran would have chosen war rather than to abide by the NPT. And your apparent insistence to the contrary is baseless.

            1. Just because you claim that those questions are absurd do not make them so.

              Noted that you did not answer them.

              1. They’re absurd for the reason Ken points out.

              2. Mike. You’re an isolationist and an appeaser, right? So you view everything from the lens that the correct response to a contentious international problem is either isolating ourselves and/or appeasement to avoid escalation to some kind of war, right?

                That’s what I get out of your posts on subjects like this.

          2. All the things the NPT peacefully prevented can only be prevented now by ignoring the NPT, huh?!

          3. The answer to all of those questions Mike is that it depends. It depends on the circumstances. You pretend that there is no downside to doing nothing. I hope you are right about that. But there is no guarantee that you are. If Iran gets nukes and then uses them on us, how are you going to explain to your grandkids that you could have stopped them but didn’t? The lie that every peacenik tells himself is that they can have peace as long as they ask for it and there is never a downside to doing nothing. Sadly, that is often a lie.

          4. Are you willing to go to war to ensure that Iran has no nukes?

            Believing the Iran Nuclear deal should be scrapped in no way suggests that the only response left is to invade Iran.

            Are you willing to further bankrupt your kids and your grandkids so that Iran gets no nukes?

            No, not sure what this question even means, although I presume it means spending blood and treasure on a war with Iran. See answer to first question above.

            Are you willing to pay substantially higher gasoline and home heating oil prices so that Iran gets no nukes?

            Possibly, but this seems like false dichotomy.

            Are you willing to understand that the best defense against American jihad is having nukes?

            Possibly, however again, a false dichotomy. Iran may be pursuing nukes for a whole host of reasons, some might be legitimate, some not. Again, a treaty would be the better way to work through these reasons, possibly even allowing them to pursue nukes with a binding agreement.

            Are you willing to accept that it is the US that has had a history of meddling in the internal governance of Iran and not the other way around?

            Yes, so why was Obama pursuing a non-binding, unilateral treaty out of the executive to deal with Iran?

            Are you willing to remove the Empire’s propaganda blindfold off of your eyes?

            Uhm, the Iran deal was made under cover of the Empire’s propaganda blindfold.

            1. Edit “unilateral treaty” for “unilateral agreement”.

    2. P.S. Why is there no mention of the fact that Obama’s agreement–which supersedes the thoroughly constitutional NPT–is completely unconstitutional?

      Because according to John Kerry, “America doesn’t do treaties anymore.”

      1. No president has unilateral authority to bind the US without a ratified treaty. As there is no ratified treaty, the US is bound to nothing in this deal.

        The real Hihn would have known that. Whoever you are, you are in no way able to fill his diapers.

  16. If Obama crafted it then it’s a safe bet if you were to call the bluff by rescinding it little or nothing will happen. It’s not like the Iranians have shown to take seriously – to the extent we can trust American intelligence which I admit is iffy.

    Deals are meant to be broken in that part of the world and I highly doubt, given Obama’s foreign policy record which can be described as at best confused (if not a failure if we look at Egypt and Libya), he was playing 5-D chess. I think it was just a vainglorious deal in which – as Politico reported – turned a blind eye to Hizbollah.

    I’m not betting against Trump on this one.

    He was more on cue with Korea and certainly gave a good impression in Asia as well as showed how useless the Paris Accords were. So I’m thinking and I could be wrong, the Iran deal has the same weight as the Paris Accords. ‘It’s a start’ is not a good strategy.

    Besides, it’s good to chip away at a fabricated legacy like Obama’s.

    As for Europe, poor emasculated Europe so willing to bend over backwards for such regimes, I’m not sure what their shtick in wanting to keep it is. But if Germany wants it bad, then like the go opposite of Obama theory dictates, it’s probably a good thing to walk away.

    1. How much longer does the world have to endure idiots like you doing it harm just because you are in the fucking Team R cult?

      You may or may not have noticed that’s all you said. “I’m Team R, thus I will think what Trump tells me to think. And not only is anything Obama did bad, even if it wasn’t, we should undermine it anyway so his Team doesn’t get a point.”

      1. I love when progressives start pretending like they’re totes anti-war after just spending the past year trying to provoke war with Russia. You are just as big of a hypocrite as the anti-Iran deal people, Tony.

        You’re either a parody at this point or ENB’s husband

        1. Russia committed what is reasonably described as an attack on the United States. You’re saying any attempt to respond to that is tantamount to calling for all-out war. Okay, you’re an appeaser bordering on traitor. Fine. Just stop regurgitating pro-Russia Trump-defending horseshit and pretending that it’s pacifism.

          1. “Russia committed what is reasonably described as an attack on the United States.”

            Is this supposed to make you sound not stupid?

          2. Wow, you do realize that the United States has been doing exactly the same thing to Russia since you’ve been alive right? And they’ve been doing it to us since you’ve been alive?

            That you take issue with it now is curious. How many votes were changed by the Russians, again?

          3. Hillary not getting elected by Americans means we should get into WWIII with Russia?

            WTF? Tony, you lefties have lost your mind.

          4. And I’m the crazy one?

            /makes coo-coo gesture.

          5. Russia committed what is reasonably described as an attack on the United States.

            Tony… I… jesus christ.

            1. That little bit of news doesn’t get a lot of play on FOX does it?

              1. Tony, you’re the only person on here that watches FOX regularly.

        2. ” or ENB’s husband”

          Ouch.

        3. It isn’t being pro war to be against the Iran deal. War is a very unlikely alternative. Especially under this president.

      2. Tony is upset. I love how progs pick and choose where they’re going to apply their anti-war faux-principles. As one once told me after I mentioned to him about Obama drone killing Americans without due process, ‘So what? Fuck ’em. Don’t go to those places and you won’t be killed.’ Awesome enlightening take.

        I’m just merely observing that Obama’s FP had no ‘smart set’ and was more ‘there’s no there there’. He couldn’t handle Syria, Libya, Egypt with any meaningful method but suddenly he struck gold with the Iran deal?

        You should be skeptical.

        Team red cult. Cute.

    2. Besides, it’s good to chip away at a fabricated legacy like Obama’s.

      See this is part of the problem when it comes to discourse on this issue. If you’re opposed to the deal, then explain why you are opposed on the merits of the deal itself. But if you’re opposed to the deal just because Obama/Kerry negotiated it, then that actually weakens your argument against the deal, because it suggests that you don’t really care how strong or weak the deal itself is, you are just opposed to it no matter what.

      1. Or it can be both, where negating the deal is a good idea because it’s a bad deal, and shutting Obama’s sycophants down is a good thing because they clutter the debate with nonsense and hero worship.

  17. Can someone give me a link so I can see how various senators voted on the ratification of the Iran nuclear deal framework?

    I can’t seem to find a record of that anywhere.

    And I know that the enumerated powers of congress are extremely important to Reason staff–so much so that they would never think of supporting something that violated the constitution in this way.

    It’s one thing to argue that the treaty should be ratified by the Senate.

    Quite another to insist that we should abide by a treaty that is thoroughly unconstitutional.

    1. So, this is actually the best argument against the Iran deal: it is by definition illegal since the Senate never voted on it. On that point, I will agree that you are correct, Ken

      1. Not only that, it supersedes a treaty that the U.S. senate ratified.

        1. There is no grant of power to either the executive or the legislative branches in the constitution that authorizes the general government to interfere in the internal governance of another nation.

          Likewise, there is no grant of power given to the feds to enter into treaties prohibiting another nation from defending itself.

          1. This is absurd.

            Treaties are made to end wars all the time.

            1. Show me the constitutional text that specifically contradicts my assertions.

              Your mere asseveration that my assertions are absurd does not carry the day.

              1. The power to make a treaty or engage in war is explicitly given to the FedGov, so I’m afraid the burden of proof is on you to show why a mutually signed treaty is invalid if it has bearing on the foreign nations internal operations.

                By your measure, every trade treaty in the history of the world was invalid. A curious position to hold, for sure.

                1. The execution of the treaty, like the making of any law, must be consistent with, and made pursuant to, the constitution. Just because its a treaty does not make it constitutionally sound.

                  1. See the constitution below.

                    1. DONT BE A CUCK.

                    2. MIke thinks cucks cite the Constitution.

                    3. Mike strikes me as one of those anarcho-capitalist types that thinks even the constitution is a slaver document. You can’t have a real intellectual discussion with him.

                  2. …yes a treaty needs to be in line with our constitution in terms of our end of the agreement, but that has no bearing on a treaty being invalid just because it requires a foreign nation to do or not do something. Again, by your reading of what a treaty must be all trade treaties are illegal. Curious.

              2. Mike, you’re the one saying the federal government can’t do what it has always done. The burden of proof is in you, not him.

          2. So what you’re saying is that all international relations are by default invalid, cool!

            1. No, I am not Empire lover. Stop being a slaver.

              1. Yes, you are, because all treaties require action of the foreign actor and you’ve made a case for why any treaty that has effects upon a foreign power are de facto illegitimate.

                It’s not my fault you can’t think past first order consequences. Trade has huge effects upon foreign governments and interests by definition.


                There is no grant of power to either the executive or the legislative branches in the constitution that authorizes the general government to interfere in the internal governance of another nation

                So in other words, we can’t craft a trade treaty with a foreign country since it will have effects upon their internal governance. No treaty, in fact, is legitimate under this reading. You’d have to assume that second order consequences don’t exist for this to even be borderline true.

                Now, if you want to narrow your argument into something cogent feel free.

                1. First Principles.

                  No matter what you imagine to be beyond first order consequences, the feds do not have more power than that which is specifically granted. That you and other big government progressives envision a big scary monster or some other dooms day scenario if we do not accept that the powers granted to the feds come with a whole lot of implied powers does not thereby mean that feds have such powers.

                  Yes, under the constitution, the US can enter into treaties, but such treaties are only constitutionally valid if they adhere to the constitution. Thus, not all treaties are constitutional.

                  For example, the US can craft a treaty with an Indian tribe under the terms of which the US promises to stop making war with the Indians and to pay them for the use of their land and to stop making reservations and to stop building railroads on their land. It can not, however, make a treaty which purports to dictate how the Indian tribe is to govern itself.

                  Another example, the US can make a treaty with Iran under the terms of which the US promises to stop interfering with the internal governance of Iran and that it will furnish money and war material to neighbors of Iran. It cannot enter into a treaty which purports to dictate how Iran can defend itself.

                  You want to discuss second and third order consequences? How about the effects a treaty or any legislation will have upon the exercise of individual liberty?

                  1. What type of effect will a treaty have on the balance sheet of the country? Given that the nation has at least 20 trillion in federal debt and several hundred trillion in unfunded liabilities, the failure to include the same in the making of any treaty or legislation is progressive stupidity on steroids.

                    What about the creation of new agencies, boards, bureaucrats, czars, enforcement personnel, monitors, regulators, security, and spies that the treaty or legislation either directly authorizes or is implied by other rotten public sector parasites? What about the ensuing cost to individual liberty occasioned by such treaties and / or legislation?

                    What about the potential growth of the MIC, the national security state, and the national surveillance state occasioned by such treaties and / or legislation?

                    If the treaty or legislation impinges upon any natural rights, the treaty or law is void as being repugnant to the constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

                    But, progressive cucks gotta be progressive cucks.


                  2. No matter what you imagine to be beyond first order consequences, the feds do not have more power than that which is specifically granted.

                    Right, and they are explicitly granted this power as cited to you multiple times. Yet you have so far managed to not cite the bit that has extra stipulations attached to the treaty clause.

                    Now, you might be able to make a moral argument but that’s not at all the same thing. You won’t find any statement that says the United States must respect first principles in dealing with foreign powers outside of your own head. It’s simply not there in the Constitution.

                    Now I’m sure you’ll bring up the non-aggression principle, but notably you won’t find it in the United States constitution. You’re making two parallel arguments, and it’s making you sound crazy because you simply can’t help but to conflate them when they’re not at all the same argument.

                    1. Granted, the NAP and the constitution are two different things.

                      Granted, arguments stemming from the NAP and the constitution are different.

                      As for the constitution, you seem to be eliding my arguments that (1) in order for any exercise of power by the feds to be valid, the power has to be specifically set forth in the constitution and (2) the power is not valid because the specific exercise thereof is implied.

                      Thus, where in the constitution does it state that the US can enter into a treaty the contents of which and / or the making of which violates other provisions of the constitution? Show me.


                  3. For example, the US can craft a treaty with an Indian tribe under the terms of which the US promises to stop making war with the Indians and to pay them for the use of their land and to stop making reservations and to stop building railroads on their land. It can not, however, make a treaty which purports to dictate how the Indian tribe is to govern itself

                    I like examples, but this seems like further proof of your madness. Under your interpretation, you’ve already pointed out that war isn’t a legitimate function of the United States government therefore in this scenario you’re having a nation that’s already violating first principles decide to stop violating them and calling it a treaty.

                    Is a trade treaty that says “we’ll pay you above the going rate for corn, for any corn that you will sell us” not influencing how they govern themselves, as they will likely grow more corn than they otherwise would have? Note that in both scenarios, the ‘other’ is agreeing to the terms.

                    You seem to have a very narrow concept of what constitutes ‘interference’. I like your moral reasoning well enough, but it doesn’t translate into international trade or relations very well. Especially since, notably, many Libertarians don’t believe that borders exist at all which makes all types of international agreements void by default.

                    1. From the constitutional perspective, if country X attacks the USA, without provocation, then, in my view, Congress can declare war on country X. Thus, I do not contend that all declarations of war are invalid under the constitution.

                      If, on the other hand, the USA is mining the harbors of country X and supplying war materials to country X’s enemies and harassing the civilian shipping of country X and engaging in covert operations against country X, that activity is not constitutionally valid.

                      Regarding trade treaties, if the same do not interfere with the individual economic rights of US citizens and the individual economic liberties of the citizens of the other nation, then the agreement is constitutionally valid.

                      Again, what constitutional provision unequivocally permits the feds to enter into a treaty that violates other constitutional provisions?

                    2. Ah, that’s all I was looking for. The ‘in my view’ caveat that shows that this is all simple personal preference and opinion instead of what is, or even what is logically consistent.

                      Thanks!

                      I’ll give you a free piece of advice, if you want to argue against the legitimacy of the constitution and read a whole lot of extra stuff into plain meaning simple paragraphs of bullet points, I’d suggest being a bit more careful who you refer to as ‘Progressives’ because you’re already playing on their turf.

                      “Libertarianism” and “Constitutionalism” are not necessarily the same things, either, so you probably shouldn’t act like they are.

                    3. Again, what text in the constitution specifies that Congress can pass legislation or a treaty which violates other provisions of the constitution?

                      I am waiting.

                    4. Pass legislation is domestic, as such it’s in a different category altogether.

                      Now you’re adding in little side arguments, and I’m curious which bit of any of the non-treaties that don’t actually exist violate other portions of the Constitution, and which bits these imaginary treaties violate explicitly?

                    5. Again, you are dodging my point: what text in the constitution specifies that a law can be passed or a treaty can be ratified which violates another portion of the constitution?

                    6. I’m not dodging your point, it’s that your point isn’t a point it’s a fallacy.

                      One can not prove a negative, dumbass. It’s a basic rule of rational thought and the burden of proof is on you as your claim is the extraordinary one that is contrary to all current thought and behavior and it leads to irrational and contradictory conclusions.

                      By your measure, the government doesn’t have the authority to naturalize Mexicans as citizens because it doesn’t explicitly say ‘Mexicans can be naturalized’ even though it specifically says that Congress has the enumerated power of naturalization.

                      You’re clearly not a constitutionalist of any stripe, so again you should be wary of throwing out the pejorative of ‘Progressive’ because you have a few of their more distasteful views on constitutions.

                    7. No, my point is not a fallacy.

                      You know that there is no provision in the constitution which permits any law or treaty to violate another provision of the constitution. Please explain how that is a fallacy.

                      That every provision in the constitution is to be given meaning is not a difficult concept to grasp. So, how about the 9th amendment? Can Congress pass a law or ratify a treaty that violates the amendment? How about the 2A? The 1A? Do you think that every law or treaty passes constitutional muster?

                      Indeed, there are numerous cases where courts have held that no constitutional language is to be discarded or deemed superfluous. After all, when a court strikes down a statute for violating the constitution, there is, in the court’s reasoning, a constitutional provision that the law violates.

                    8. BYODB –

                      Let’s take your naturalization example:

                      My argument is not refuted because the language supports the construction that naturalization can occur with any foreign national. So, if the question is does Congress have the power to naturalize Old Mex, the answer is yes.

                      However, if Congress passes a law to naturalize Ole Mex and all of his family members and, as part of the law, Ole Mex and his family get free healthcare, a new car every year, free tuition and room and board at any college to which they are accepted, your home, all of your guns, and 50% of your income every year, and the law forbid any judicial review of the same by you. Would that law pass constitutional muster?

                      Do you now understand? Just because Congress has the power to naturalize Mexicans, it does not thereby mean that it can naturalize Ole Mex and take your house and half of your income every year as part of the law. The law would violate your 5th, 6th, 9th, and 14th amendment rights.

                      As for progressivism, perhaps one of the best conceptions is that of James Ostrowski, author of Progressivism: A Primer on the Idea destroying America. There is nothing in my viewpoints that could even remotely be accurately described as progressive.

                    9. Except your proposition that people not subject to the jurisdiction of the US enjoy Constitutional rights.

                    10. Mike, I already cited the constitutional clauses.

                      Now YOU’RE the CUCK.

              2. His comment does not make him a ‘slaver’. What a bizarre thing to say in the context of this discussion.

          3. Libertymike|5.1.18 @ 1:35PM|#
            There is no grant of power to either the executive or the legislative branches in the constitution that authorizes the general government to interfere in the internal governance of another nation.
            Likewise, there is no grant of power given to the feds to enter into treaties prohibiting another nation from defending itself.

            US Constitution, Article I, Section 8:

            To define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas, and offenses against the law of nations;
            To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water;
            ….

            Article II, Section 2:

            He shall have power, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, to make treaties,
            ….

            1. Does the language you cite include the language I used above?

              Don’t be a middling type of mind LC, you can do better than that. Why would you want to indulge the feds with more power?

              1. You are the one who’s derailed.

                The Constitution authorizes the US government to interfere with other government’s governance when that country violates the law of nations and under the war powers clause.

                The Constitution also allows the US gov to makes treaties and no limitations are listed.

      2. Thanks, Bob Corker, for that.

  18. Well, I have only read the Wikipedia article on the Iran deal, perhaps just a little better than staying in a Holiday Inn Express last night. But it does seem to me that the deal is somewhat weak on Iran’s part. It allows them to keep a bunch of stuff that is required for uranium enrichment, but they have to promise to keep it in storage and not use it. That seems rather difficult to enforce and easy to cheat on. On the other hand, if this is the only way to get inspectors in the country to inspect their facilities then maybe a weak deal is better than no deal at all, and no inspections.

    But the other part of me is wondering why we are even attempting to micromanage Iran’s affairs in the first place. Why shouldn’t they have the sovereignty to do as they please?

    1. Indeed, as I ask Ken above.

    2. “But the other part of me is wondering why we are even attempting to micromanage Iran’s affairs in the first place. Why shouldn’t they have the sovereignty to do as they please?”

      They ratified the NPT.

      We’re interested in our own security. The legitimate purpose of government is to protect our rights, and the legitimate purpose of foreign policy is to protect our rights from foreign threats. One of the best ways to do that, historically, is through an alliance, and the framers saw fit to include a mechanism to ratify treaties with foreign powers for that reason.

      Iran’s multi-stage rockets and their nuclear program present a significant threat to our rights, and if the government were not concerning itself with that, then they wouldn’t be doing their legitimate job.

      1. Yeah. Iran can always pull out of the NPT. But having something on paper is more important than reality.

        1. So many things wrong with that, it’s hard to know where to start.

          Are you sure they can simply withdraw from the treaty without suffering negative consequences according to the treaty?

          And if it were just a piece of paper, why did they subject themselves to crippling sanctions? Are crippling sanctions just a piece of paper? Is inflation in quadruple digits just a piece of paper? Is being cut off from the international banking system just a piece of paper?

          They didn’t seem to think so. And yet, why were they willing to subject themselves to that rather than simply abide by the treaty and get their enriched uranium from Russia?

          1. That is their problem. If they want out, they can simply leave. What is the world going to do? Unless WE attack, nobody will.

            I am saying that they are being permitted to have their cake and eat it too. If Iran feels NPT is “unfair”, they should leave. But the world is demanding we let them profess to abide by it while they do not do so.

            1. “That is their problem. If they want out, they can simply leave. What is the world going to do?”

              They’re not a communist country like North Korea. Sanctions against them were extremely painful.

              Did I mention that their inflation rate was in four digits?

              Did I mention that they had burned through all their foreign reserves?

              They were selling oil on the black market–at huge discounts.

              They were desperate for access to international credit markets–or they were looking at running out of food.

              Meanwhile, they were fighting to keep Assad in power for fear that the Arab Spring raging next door might turn into a Persian summer.

              Why do you think they came to the negotiating table in the first place? Because of Obama’s heartfelt speeches? Because they read a persuasive article at Cato about the NAP?

              They came to the negotiating table because we forced them to through the NPT. Oh, and even when they were under full sanctions from the NPT members, they never left the treaty themselves. Either you’re missing some crucial information or they’re just not as smart as you in realizing that they can leave any time they want.

      2. It is not the US’s job alone to enforce the NPT. It is the job of all of the nuclear NPT states. And it seems to me that the five nuclear NPT states were also the ones who were party to this Iran deal, implicitly agreeing that this deal was the way that they were going to enforce the NPT on Iran. If Iran is cheating on the deal, or if Iran is breaking the NPT in other ways, then it’s up to the five nuclear NPT states to come up with another enforcement mechanism, not up to the US alone. Would you disagree?

        1. Note how he dodges my questions with a jejune, puerile, and sophomoric assertion that my questions are absurd.

          Note how he does not provide any facts to support his assertion that Iran’s weapons present a significant threat to our rights.

          Note how he does not say the same thing with regard to the nuclear weapons possessed by the Jewish state which has a demonstrated history of interfering with the internal governance of its neighbors and for committing savage atrocities.

          1. Your questions are absurd–and I showed why.

            1) The NPT prevented the things you’re seeking to avoid, so thinking that going back to the strictures of the NPT will make those things happen is absurd.

            2) The idea that the constitution doesn’t give congress the authority to enter into treaties that require other countries to do certain things is also absurd–because treaties have been used to do precisely that, especially to bring an end to wars, since time immemorial.

            Your whole argument is baseless and absurd.

            You see this outcome you want–no war with Iran–and you’re rationalizing all sorts of baseless arguments that will not lead to your desired outcome. In fact, you’re undermining the means by which the outcome you want has been effectuated since 1970.

            In a word, “absurd”.

            1. Once again, Ken demonstrates how clueless he is.

              The NPT has not prevented war being waged by the US on a veritable plethora of nations in the middle east, including Iran. Since 1970, do you know how many millions of people have either died or been maimed or had their property destroyed by the US?

              The NPT has not operated to protect the individual liberties of US citizens as the US has bankrupted its citizens for the benefit of the MIC, the national security and national surveillance state, its overseas Empire, and for the benefit of the Jewish state. We live in an electronic cage, all under the eyes of the Opticon and yet Ken spouts cucky bromides about “governments protecting rights”.

              Ken, like well healed, obedient cucky libertarians, regurgitates progressive talking points regarding the proper interpretation of the scope of power granted to the feds. Said otherwise, Ken is a devotee of the proposition that federal powers can be implied – notwithstanding the fact that there is no textual support for the same. To argue that Congress has the implied power to interfere in the internal governance of another nation because….treaties is necessarily accepting the notion that Congress has implied powers even though the big government proponents of the constitution insisted otherwise.


              1. The NPT has not prevented war being waged by the US on a veritable plethora of nations in the middle east, including Iran. Since 1970, do you know how many millions of people have either died or been maimed or had their property destroyed by the US?

                But how many times have we gone to war because of the NPT, and did the NPT contribute to us not going to war with Iran?


                The NPT has not operated to protect the individual liberties of US citizens as the US has bankrupted its citizens for the benefit of the MIC, the national security and national surveillance state, its overseas Empire, and for the benefit of the Jewish state.

                So the NPT has done nothing to keep the United States from being nuked, good to know. I take it you’re against the NPT since you believe that all treaties of all kinds are, of course, illegitimate as a matter of course.

                Your insanity is like an onion, there are layers of madness and each one we peel back reveals yet more aromatic crazy than the one before.

                1. Okay slaver.

                  LM says treaties which violate First Principles and / or the Declaration of Independence and / or the federal constitution are illegitimate.

                  Therefore, BYODB says LM claims ALL treaties are illegitimate.

                  1. Call me slaver if it makes you feel better, but I’m not the one advocating for an interpretation of treaties that invalidates all agreements of all kinds between nations. Like I’ve said numerous times, if you want to walk back your crazy and try to explain specifically what kind of ‘interference’ is allowable in your bizarre universe Constitution I’d be happy to hear it, but as-is your understanding appears to be on par with a tin-foil hat wearing child.

                    Foreseeable consequences are not unintended consequences.

                  2. LM, I’ll assume, is you?

                    I don’t know what arguments you’re making anymore.

                    By your view, the ability to declare war (an explicitly constitutional function) is also illegitimate because of it’s violation of first principles of foreign nations (presumably their right to life, at the very least). It seems like you’re trying to use constitutional arguments to argue against the wording of the constitution, which is a pretty bizarre task overall.

                    I said that, as stated, your position amounted to all treaties precisely because all treaties have effects upon foreign nations internal governance, which was your stated metric. Now you’re moving the goal posts, but in fairness I did ask you to clarify because your stated position was the ramblings of a madman. You’re still coming off as unhinged, but at least we’re getting somewhere.

                    Specifically, we’ve ended up at the Constitution is unconstitutional.

              2. The United States has not gone to war with Iran. We’ve had proxy wars between them and our allies. MAD would make such confrontations more likely rather than less so–much like it did during the Cold War.

                If you want to prevent the United States from going to war with Iran, then you should work to make sure Iran abides by the terms of the NPT, then you should want them to not be free to enrich their own uranium. Once Iran feels free to launch its conventional forces without fear of direct retaliation from the U.S. and its allies, it will not result in lower likelihood of conventional war. Quite the opposite.

                1. “The NPT has not prevented war being waged by the US on a veritable plethora of nations in the middle east, including Iran.”

                  If your mind has become so twisted that you think the legitimate purpose of foreign policy is to prevent the United States from going to war, then your problems are even worse than I thought.

                  Barack Obama also thought the United States was the problem and pursuing our own interests was selfish–which is why he entered into such a ridiculous sacrificing agreement with the Iranians. The idea that if only we bent over and spread our cheeks for the Iranians, maybe they wouldn’t feel like they had to fuck us only belongs in freshman dorm rooms at liberal arts colleges. Protecting our rights from foreign threats is the legitimate purpose of foreign policy–not stopping the U.S. from going to war.

                  And if you don’t see how nuclear non-proliferation is in our security interests that way, then you’re so far gone, there’s no point in talking to you.

                  1. We should be far more concerned about protecting our rights from the federal government, our state governments and all of their political sub-divisions.

                    Empirically, there is no doubt that our own government has not only threatened, but actually violated, our rights far more often and far more consistently than any foreign entity, including the Persian state.

                    What belongs in the freshman dorm rooms is the proposition that the foreign policy of the United States is principally and foremost concerned with the protection of the individual liberties of its citizens.


                    1. Empirically, there is no doubt that our own government has not only threatened, but actually violated, our rights far more often and far more consistently than any foreign entity, including the Persian state.

                      What about England, Spain, France, and the Indian nations that murdered a whole lot of Americans?

                      I don’t disagree, but let us not pretend that the rest of the world is some libertarian paradise waiting for us to shrug off our chains. They’re objectively worse in most respects in terms of libertarian ideals.

                    2. Who’s pretending? I defy you to find any post of mine where I have waxed poetic about how some other place on earth is the Shangri – La of liberty inhabited only by hip NAP peeps.

                      But, as far as damage to the rights of American citizens, you can’t seriously be contending that the Brits or the Frenchies or the Injuns or the Mooselimbs have done more to violate our rights than the American public sector, can you?


                    3. Who’s pretending? I defy you to find any post of mine where I have waxed poetic about how some other place on earth is the Shangri – La of liberty inhabited only by hip NAP peeps.

                      I consider it to be implied when you say that only America is limited from doing all those horrible things, while foreign nations are free and clear to do so since they don’t even believe in the concept of natural rights.

                      I would say that Britain probably violated those rights the most, since people couldn’t vote, were not represented, and could have everything they had or owned confiscated by the government on a literal whim.

                      In fact, it’s why there’s a Declaration of Independence in the first place. One could argue the Civil War may have been worse, but in reality it wasn’t. Comparatively, it was a minor difference of opinion compared to our split with Britain.

                    4. Do you really buy the proposition that the Brits committed more aggressions upon the natural rights of Americans between 1607 and 1781 than the entirety of the aggressions the American public sector has made on the natural rights of Americans from 1781 through the present?

                    5. Iran had a nuclear arms program in violation of the NPT, and they have an advanced space program with multistage rockets that are already capable of launching satellites into orbit.

                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I…..l_launches

                      If our government isn’t doing anything to counter this threat to our rights, then it isn’t doing its legitimate job. Insisting that Iran stay in compliance with the NPT is the peaceful means to accomplish that. The NPT is not the means to war. Keeping it in effect and enforcing it vigorously is the means to peace.

                      If Iran wishes to avoid war with the U.S. and its allies, all it needs to do is comply with the treaty to which it is a party.

                      Assuming that Iran would necessarily go to the war with the United States and its allies rather than comply with the treaty is absurd.

                      Assuming that avoiding war with Iran requires us to capitulate to their nuclear program is also absurd.

                      All I’m seeing from you is knee-jerk flailing about avoiding war–none of which is grounded in facts or logic.

                      And IF IF IF you start making excuses for the executive to ignore the Senate’s proper role in ratifying treaties (in the name of libertarianism?!), then you’ve really gone of the rails. There should be a new word for this: Iran Derangement Syndrome–it’s when everything you used to know goes out the window and the only rational course of action seems to be capitulation to Iran’s nuclear program. It’s fucking nuts.

                    6. The means to peace are more effectively employed if they start with the proposition that no government shall overthrow the elections of another nation and install a dictator friendly to that government.

                      The means to peace are more effectively employed if they include the proposition that no government shall invade the neighboring nation of another for the purposes of making the world safe for democracy or nation building or for regime change or for seizing weapons of mass destruction.

                      The means to peace are more effectively employed if no government outspends most of the rest of the world on weaponry / war / war making.

                      Iran is a threat? If one is na?ve enough to be bamboozled by the Neo-Cohens and the MIC, one may buy that. As far as hard, irrefutable evidence, not so much – particularly in light of which country has meddled with the other and which country has invaded which country’s neighbors.

                      Sharp libertarians are supposed to laugh at the likes of John Bolton or Bill Kristol or Paul Wolfewitz or Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh or John McCain or Hillary Clinton or Jeff Sessions when they peddle the propaganda such as “Iran is the biggest state sponsor of terrorism” or “Iran’s stated goal is to destroy Israel”.

                    7. “The means to peace are more effectively employed if they start with the proposition that no government shall overthrow the elections of another nation and install a dictator friendly to that government.”

                      You’re off on some weird tangent about something that happened in 1953 within the context of the Cold War?

                      I’m talking about whether Iran’s nuclear program should given a special exemption to the NPT a la Obama’s unconstitutional treaty.

                      If you can’t even discuss the matter without swerving into irrelevancy, then have lost your way.

                      It doesn’t really matter why you can’t consider the matter without being overwhelmed by irrelevant observations, it just matters that you can’t.

                      Discussing whether Iran should be exempted from the consequences of violating the NPT with you is like discussing evolution with a religious fanatic. Why bother?

          2. One point in his favor is that one of the countries that Iran has explicitly called for the annihilation of is the United States, and by some massive coincidence the only nation they need ICBM’s to hit is…the United States out of their list of nations to exterminate.

            We know they are working on ICBM’s, and getting better at it. We also know they were working on nuclear weapons to mount on those ICBM’s and that they explicitly lied about that work.

            Do we think they’re making those to nuke Israel, when they could just toss one into their borders from Iran on a significantly smaller delivery vehicle?

          3. Mike there is no equivalence between Israel having nukes and Iran getting them. Are you really this obtuse?

        2. Who said the U.S. should act alone?

          We weren’t acting alone. All the parties to the NPT were acting together on enforcement.

          The question was why the U.S. should be interested in Iran’s internal affairs at all, and I answered that question. It wasn’t supposed to be the answer to every other question on the topic, too.

    3. Exactly. It’s a weak deal and does nothing for U.S. interests. I’ll tell you what it does. It gives the ‘perception’ something is getting done. Just like the Paris Accords it’s just window dressing.

      Didn’t the U.S. also kick in cash as part of the deal? Or it may have been something separate. I forget.

  19. The key problem here is everyone is so fucking dumb. If Bush or Trump had come up with the Iran deal it would be the fucking bee’s knees, and everyone here and their retarded pet hampster knows it. Why do we debate things when the only thing that matters to any of you assholes is which Team is getting the credit?

    1. Why don’t you try explaining why you think this deal is good instead of yelling “Obama” and “Racist”. You really have no idea how stupid you look do you?

      1. Because it halted an adversary nation’s nuclear program?

        Now you explain why letting them resume is a good idea.

    2. Yeah, this makes sense. After all, there were zero Republicans that had a problem with Medicare Part D…

      …Oh, wait, that sparked off the tea party. I guess you’re just wrong then.

  20. One thing is that the Israeli operation to get those documents is pretty damned impressive. It is being reported in Times of Israel that they learned the location where they were stored about a year ago. A nondescript warehouse in Tehran where they were kept in a series of locked vaults. Whatever other security, alarms or guards they are not saying.

    The Mossad watched and prepared. Then they were able to physically get a half ton of documents out and back to Israel the same night.

    That is just amazing.

    What Bibi is doing by making it public is as much a message to Iran as anything.

    1. Pretty much. It is astounding they did that. And it totally fucks with the Iranians. What do the Israelis know that they are not saying? And if they can do that, what can’t they do? It was one hell of an operation.

      1. I can just imagine the phone call.

        Hasan Rouhani calls Netanyahu after watching the presentation.

        Rouhani: look you lying Zionist that was all a sack of lies! You issue a retraction and apology right now!!
        Nobody is going to believe in this garbage!

        Netanyahu: Calm down Hasan. You sound upset. Maybe you have a stomach ache. That yogurt you had for breakfast was not
        fresh. It was in the fridge for three days. Oh, the turban you sent out to the cleaners won’t be back until tomorrow.
        Some kind of problem with the….. (Click)

        Hello? Hasan? Hello?

      2. Shekel for shekel, the Mossad is the most effective spook agency in the world. The last document grabbing caper they pulled off, when they got the plans to the Mirage jets that the French wanted to quit selling them, was already impressive as hell.

        I’m a bit surprised that in this day and age they grabbed hard copy in bulk instead of hiring some moles to scan it for them.

        -jcr

        1. I would guess that the hard copies are more verifiable. Maybe quicker that way to get in and out. Just throw them in duffle bags and head to the extraction point.

          I see a new theme for the next Daniel Silva novel.

  21. And so a special joint meeting of Libertarians For Military Belligerence and Libertarians For Bigotry is convened at the comment section of reason.com.

    How long ago were the genuine libertarians driven from this site by the incessant whining of right-wing authoritarians masquerading in libertarian drag?

    Carry on, clingers.

  22. Iran is not keeping their “commitments” under this deal, nor do they have intention of keeping them. Iran has one goal, and that goal precludes any assumption of Iran as “rational actors”.
    .
    Iran is comitted to the return of the Mahdi, aka the 12th imam. In order to accomplish that, they believe they must wash the world in blood. The Mahdi is their “savior”, and the head of the One World Govt. Christian end times doctrine recognize him as the antichrist.
    .
    When you understand Iran’s goal, then you understand that they will lie cheat & steal to reach their goal.
    .
    ** Don’t take my word for this; research it for yourselves. Here is a video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1GfKuuxIHY , and there is plenty of info on this topic.

    1. “Iran is not keeping their “commitments” under this deal, nor do they have intention of keeping them. Iran has one goal, and that goal precludes any assumption of Iran as “rational actors”.

      I hope you cage is roomy and well situated. Parrots deserve no less.

  23. If the Jews ever said “this place sucks, we’re out of here” and left the Middle East, the resulting bloodbath of Arabs and Persians all trying to shove their own flavor of islam down each other’s throats would rival Mao or Pol Pot’s worst. It could cost them a third or even half of their population.

    Iran wants nukes because they hope that the threat of annihilation will be enough to make all their neighbors obey them. They lied about their efforts to date, and I’d bet very long odds that they’re still trying to acquire them as we speak. I only hope that the people overthrow the theocrats with the minimum loss of innocent lives.

    -jcr

    1. “If the Jews ever said “this place sucks, we’re out of here” and left the Middle East, the resulting bloodbath of Arabs and Persians all trying to shove their own flavor of islam down each other’s throats would rival Mao or Pol Pot’s worst.”

      That’s obvious. The weird thing is though, that if the Jews ever said “this place is great, we’re staying,” the exact same thing will happen. Jews are not going to be able to talk their way out of the inevitable bloodbath. It didn’t work last time, won’t work this time.

      “I only hope that the people overthrow the theocrats with the minimum loss of innocent lives.”

      And Hope B?

      1. The Jews in Israel are staying. They are not going anywhere.

        They are not planning on “talking their way out of it”. Far from it.

        This is the only state in the Middle East with a prosperous high tech economy. A democracy with civil rights. Israel has developed tech you are using now more than you know. They are in energy, water, medicine, and food technology beyond any country for its size. Israelis trade and share all of that.

        In defense they punch far beyond any regional country. Do not mess with them. Iranians just learned from that. Hopefully that will lead to peaceful relations at some point.

        1. “In defense they punch far beyond any regional country.”

          Not sure about that. They’ve been chased out of Lebanon twice now by a militia without a navy, airforce or nuclear capacity. They can’t even stop home made rockets fired from Gaza, essentially an open air prison. What is it that impresses you about Israeli military capacity?

  24. Actually the ‘Iran deal’ was a TREATY according to the Constitution. Obama just side-stepped the rules, (He did that a lot.) So we’re under no obligation to pay any attention to it AT ALL. Guess Obama is learning breaking the rules and acting like a king wasn’t such a good idea after all.

  25. Ahhh my Rhomite friends — how dare Pres. Trump contemplate steps to avoid a second holocaust with the six million Jews of eretz Yisrael. How dare he? That bitch Ayn Rand set the Libertarian wheels in motion and you hate her bevause she disowned you guys. All member of her tribe should die along with he,eh? Iran will do your geneocidal work against the Jews for you guys and you can continue to snort cocaine and shoot heroin till your hearts’ content.

    But perhaps Pres. Trump (who I voted for) has different ideas. I certainly hope so.

    “There’sn needto fear. Underzog is here!”

    1. No need to fear, The Golden Golem of Goys is here!

  26. The authors here haven’t written of an important benefit to America’s reneging on the Iran deal. It is the perfect way to punish Obama voters, like those in Washington state who work at Boeing, for example. Stopping those palette loads of cash from washing back into the pockets of Democrat voters would be a positive and liberating gesture. The next time they want to inflict 8 years of hell on us all, they will think twice.

  27. It seems to me the whole Iran deal was diplomatic malpractice from the get-go. Does anyone really think there isn’t a connection between Hillary brokering 20% of US uranium to Russia and Kerry showing them our tax dollars? Think: how much Russian uranium stock was freed up by that? Between that and the gift of multi-week lead time for “inspections”… is there really any enforcement mechanism that isn’t vaporware? Scrap the deal. We absolutely must do better.

    1. “We absolutely must do better.”

      Nonsense. It’s the Iranians who must do better. We just have to keep punishing them with crippling economic sanctions, even though it breaks our Libertarian hearts.

  28. Off topic but if anyone is still following this thread.

    This thing with Trumps medical records from his former personal physician.

    He has every right to those records and this is done every day.

    There was no signed document from the patient requesting the records. That is a clear violation of HIPA rules and ethics which the doctor must comply with.

    Second, the way this is done normally is that after the request the patient gets a copy of the record. That did not happen here. The Trump thugs just took it all. The doctors office is obligated to keep records on every patient.

    Third, this doc apparently leaked what meds were prescribed. Nope that is a violation. Ethical if not illegal. Yet Trump switched doctors by neccesity a year ago. It would be the job of his medical team from the day he took office to go and get his records as soon as possible.

    Nobody requested them until the leak of his meds, which are no big deal, came out. His chief security thug and lawyer just showed up and demanded the documents.

    Fourth that whole relationship is very, I dunno very weird. The letter of health thing, the whole way things went.

    Then we have Dr Admiral Jackson. Wow did he step into a pile of cow manure or what?

    Perhaps it does not add to a lot in big politics or legal whatever,

    Our rulers do not live by the rules they impose.

  29. The Iran deal is a treaty, but Obama never got congressional approval. Same thing for the ACA subsidies. So Obama’s two policy milestones were in fact, effectively illegal. If you take out his softening on gay marriage and pot, you have a guy who bailed out all the evil companies that crashed the economy and got involved in global conflicts. The gig economy (uber) was masterminded by Obama personnel, who offered business a way out of paying their non union contractors benefits and healthcare. They passed ACA and seized on a lot of virgin territory.

    Going back on topic – why do some libertarians (and Tony) are insisting that Trump honor a deal that’s arguably unconstitutional?

  30. This deal never went through congress. It should be put up for an up or down vote in the house and senate. This Iran deal looks like a worse deal than we gave N. Korea in the 1990’s. Let’s hope it gets canned.

    1. Care to elaborate, or have you outsourced your thinking to partisan TV blowhards? Why is the alternative preferable?

  31. It’s a garbage deal… But we should work on, and have agreed upon, a better replacement deal before officially letting them off the hook on the old one. This would make the most sense. Trump could always threaten to immediately end the old one if they don’t sign off on a new one, and if they’re fairly close on terms they may just sign off to avoid being bombed even further into the stone age.

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