further on the biden team’s iran flim-flam

Biden’s JCPOA ‘Plus + Plus’ Deal With Iran Is Not A Realistic Option
Moon of Alabama, Dec 8 2020

Alastair Crooke has written another concise summary of the US foreign policy problem with regards to Iran:

Biden says he wants to achieve a nuclear deal with Iran through diplomacy: a JCPOA ‘Plus + Plus.’ The Europeans desperately concur with this aspiration. But the ‘deal protocols’ that his ‘A-Team’ inherits from the Obama era have always contained seeds to failure.

The Iran question is not about nuclear missiles. These are impractical weapons, and Iran has no interest in gaining them. The nuclear issue is simply used as a lever to press on Iran. The real issue is Iran’s role in the region. The Shi’a are a majority around the Persian Gulf, and the various Sunni Arab dictatorships see them as a danger to their rule. Israel exaggerates the Iran issue to press the US for weapons free of charge and additional subsidies. What the Biden administration and the European poodles want Iran to have less influence in its region and less missiles to defend its country from attacks. Iran will of course not agree to restrictions on either. And why should it?

After four years of tight sanctions from the Trump administration, which were greatly supported by the Europeans, Iran has changed its economic structure and orientation. Oil revenues now play a much smaller role in the government budget than they did before the sanctions. The economy has adopted by concentrating on business with non-western countries. Iran is looking east. Further sanctions will thereby not modify Iran’s position or behavior. At some point the Biden administration will have to concede that fact. That then leaves war as the only option to reach the expressed desire of the ‘west.’ But the ‘red pill’ of Iran’s military posture prevents that. In Sep 2019 Iranian-made missiles and drones took out half of Saudi Arabia’s oil production. In Jan 2020 Iran took revenge for the US murder of Major General Qassem Soleimani with a precise missile attack on a US base in Iraq. Iran’s precise missiles with a range of 2k km can be mass-fired from underground silos. Any attacker would have great trouble to destroy those. Iran can not only defend its sea, air and ground, but it can retaliate against an attack with precision attacks on all US bases in the Middle East and by destroying all Arab oil export facilities. Its Lebanese brothers in arms, Hizbullah, have their own missile capabilities which are sufficient to destroy most of Israel’s industries. If Iran is attacked they will, as they promised, ‘do their duty.’ A US Navy official admitted just yesterday that the US is deterred by Iran:

The top US Navy official in the Mideast said Sunday that America has reached an “uneasy deterrence” with Iran after months of regional attacks and seizures at sea, even as tensions remain high between Washington and Tehran over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program. Vice-Adm Sam Paparo, who oversees the Navy’s 5th Fleet based in Bahrain, struck an academic tone in comments to the annual Manama Dialogue hosted by the International Institute for Strategic Studies. He described having a “healthy respect” for both Iran’s regular navy and the naval forces of its paramilitary IRGC. The vice admiral said: “We have achieved an uneasy deterrence. That uneasy deterrence is exacerbated by world events and by events along the way.”

Sanctions will not give the ‘west’ the results it desires. The only alternative to get to those results is a large scale war against Iran with the aim to overthrow its government. But such a war can not be waged because it would destroy the Middle East and would push the global economy into a deep recession. In short, it is no alternative. As Crooke writes:

The ‘under-the-table’ issue is Iran’s conventional military prowess, and not its putative nukes. And that is why Israel will insist on maximal pressure on Iran, meaning more rather than less US extreme sanction leverage, to force constraints on its conventional armoury, as well as on its nuclear programme. And that just ain’t going to happen. Iran isn’t going to do that. Friedman says: “That is going to be very, very difficult to negotiate. It’s complicated.” Indeed. Pursuing negotiations according to the old Obama protocols inevitably will take Biden directly to the explicit threat of the ‘military option,’ which seems to match exactly Netanyahu’s intent. Paradoxically, it is however, precisely this new Iranian ‘smart’ conventional capability that ultimately might deter Biden from the military option path, the fear of igniting region-wide war that could destroy the Gulf States. And it is this Iranian transformation which indicates why the ‘military option’ is not a true option: A US-endorsed military option is a ‘red pill’ option for the region.

A JCPOA ‘Plus + Plus’ deal will not happen. There is no realistic way to achieve it. As this is obvious, one really wonders why the European poodles are pressing for it. What do they hope to gain? Thankfully Iran has given Biden another option. He can take back all sanctions Trump introduced and return to the JCPOA deal. Iran has promised that it will again restrict its nuclear program and will stay within the limits of JCPOA as soon a Biden lifts the sanctions. The Iranian parliament has put a time limit on that option by directing its government to cease adherence to the JCPOA by February. Joe Biden can take that offer or he can waste four years with useless hand-wringing over the Iran issues. Time is not on his side. Iran will only get stronger. It will continue to work for its rightful interests in its region, to play a role that fits its natural size. It is time for the US to acknowledge and accept that.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: