A big sigh of relief came from the US with news that Obama had snared his critical 34th Senate vote for the Iran agreement, thus avoiding a down to the wire cliff hanger as the 60 day review period ran out. No one was predicting an early determination like this. Like in a poker game, many will often hold their cards to the end of the game where there are big prizes for key votes.
The first hint of positive movement came when the Democratic leadership took the bull by the horns to deliver the votes that their president needed. They did not advertise this early in the process to avoid even more pressure from the AIPAC Lobby than they knew they were going to get. AIPAC’s political power was also on trial here.
Party loyalty and common sense ruled the day, as to do otherwise would have made the Democrats fools in front of the whole world by leaving their President twisting in the wind after his administration’s huge political investment. The August Congressional recess was put to good use with Nancy Pelosi coordinating building the list of supporters in the House and Harry Reid doing the same in the Senate to give Obama a veto proof vote.
AIPAC tried to get the momentum ball rolling early on with Senators Chuck Schumer and Robert Menendez declaring they would vote no. Schumer came as no surprise and Robert Menendez is a “dead man walking” politically because he has been criminally charged in a bribery and underage sex scandal in what our sources tell us was a classic Israeli honey trap operation to get control of Menendez, which they did. He is not our only compromised Congressman, but that is a story for another day.
AIPAC published their support letters and the agreement backers published theirs…rabbis, ex-Congressmen, diplomats, military brass and then the Jewish group leaders. But I spotted a flaw in their game early on, that their talking points were not really theirs…they were Bibi’s. They seemed to work fine for the Republicans looking forward to Sheldon Adelson’s campaign cash, but for the Democrats, they were having to choose between AIPAC and Israel, and Obama and their country. All those who constantly say both parties are the same need to remember this event.
For the Republicans there was nothing to think about really, nothing to plan. AIPAC was taking care of all that for them. Patrick Dorton of the Citizens for a Nuclear Free Iran explained, “For pro-Israeli activists this is a once in a generation vote.” Just his group alone spent $20 million to kill the deal in national media ads, money down the drain now thank god.
Reports have been coming out that the opposition did not really work to convince the Democrats to break with the President, but to scare them. When fear has always worked for the Israel Lobby intimidating Congressmen it is hard to change to a new tactic for such an important vote. But AIPAC overplayed its hand in this case, and it backfired on them.
When Congress went home for recess they did not find the voters shared AIPAC’s hostility toward the agreement despite all the rigged polls that AIPAC had magically created saying that they did. What the AIPAC people also did not do is offer an alternative for getting a better deal because they did not want one. This may seem counter intuitive but it isn’t.
Israeli political espionage and AIPAC’s job was to get the US taxpayer to fund an attack on Iran to destroy its nuclear facilities because that would make Israel feel all warm and fuzzy. They were demanding a deal they knew that Iran would never accept, thus pushing it out of the talks back to square one and on the way to getting a taste of “all options are on the table”. Most of the Democratic Congressmen are not stupid and knew they were being played to go along if they wanted continued political support from the Lobby and avoid primary race opponents, one of the historical punishments for Congressmen who do not show the proper loyalty to Israel.
The Democrats who backed Obama claimed that the opposition pressure was not effective because this was a complex and too important a debate and vote to be ruled by political action committee talking points and fear porn. The Democrats decided to be statesmen for this vote and I urge all of you to call them to thank them. This is more important that you realize, to show them you noticed and care.
They knew the Republicans were planning to campaign during the 2016 elections to undo the deal anyway, so why should the Democrats help them do that now? Once the deal is done and over and the world moves on they would have the Republicans boxed into a corner for being Israel shills…and yes…disloyal. This is not a grey area to me, not one bit of it.
I waited a couple of days to write this because I knew that all the first reports on why the Democratic Senators supported it would be colored by not wanting to totally alienate their Jewish supporters. More clues appeared that some of the anxiety had been staged managed…that Obama knew fairly early on that he had the votes to sustain a veto but was smart enough to know he had to make the case publicly to carry the country with him.
This victory began with a key meeting before the summer recess for many of the Senate Democrats with the foreign ministry representatives of the other P5+1 members. The Senators were told in no uncertain terms that the hard fought deal was the best that could be gotten and neither they nor Iran would be renegotiating anything…period. If the Democrats walked out on the deal the US would be alone on whatever action it took.
These Congressmen realized that that was an untenable position for the US to take. They would be forfeiting American leadership for Bibi’s talking points and AIPAC’s fear campaign on Iran wanting to drive the Israelis into the sea. The Dems knew what their historical legacy would be if they did that. The AIPAC pressure was up against that hard reality.
The unsung hero of this whole process who deserves much of the credit was Department of Energy Secretary Ernst Moniz who, unlike everyone else, had both the science and diplomatic skills to explain that the opposition’s cheating talking point was just another hoax. He assured them that the US had the technology to detect the manufacturing of any weapons grade material.
Our own nuclear expert at Veterans Today before he died last year, 40 year chemical engineer veteran of the Dept. of Energy Clinton Bastin had told us exactly the same, which is why we knew Iran had neither a bomb or a secret reprocessing plant. My undergraduate work was in Chem Eng, which helped me to grasp the complexities of the engineering challenges. The charges against Iran had all been a big hoax to create the conditions for putting the sanctions on as part of an economic war against the Iranian people to foster regime change.
As for the claim that the deal handed Iran a nuclear weapons program on a silver platter after fifteen years, Congressmen were told that the military strike option would only hold a weapons program back three years. Plus, the agreement’s greatly enhanced inspections would all be thrown away with no deal, as would all the growing economic benefits Iran would be enjoying in its post sanctions growth period that it did not have now.
At the end of the day the AIPAC folks had nothing to counter this reasoning with. In fact they had their legs cut out from under them when Efraim Halevy, ex-Mossad head and Amir Ayalon of Shin Bet stated that Israel would be in a much more secure position with the agreement than without it.
The whole world will now enjoy this hard earned accomplishment due in great deal to the Israeli Lobby suffering its worst defeat in recent history. After all the humiliations that the Lobby has put Americans through, the USS Liberty killings, their WMD programs, and yes…their huge espionage operations that go on constantly with no arrests that are a national disgrace, it is time for some pay back.
Rather than letting the AIPAC subversionists lick their wounds, get rested up and then come back at us with a new attack, it is way past time for Americans to dig up some pride and eliminate the Lobby threat permanently. We will never have an opportunity like we do now when the country has seen to what lengths the Israel Lobby would go to wreck this important national security accomplishment, not only us but for the Mideast and the Iranian people.
AIPAC will retreat to takes its revenge with the Republic party by getting their presidential candidate into the oval office in 2016. All of their candidates, including Trump, would wreck everything that has been accomplished with this Iran agreement.
Trump knows he will have the Lobby support for the asking and we all know what it will want in return, to have Israel’s interest come first for all their key issues, and Americans sent to the back of the bus, with the appropriate big tip for the treasonous bus drivers in Congress. It is time for us to break this cycle while we have this momentum. So let’s get on with it, resistance, resistance!
Jim W. Dean, managing editor for Veterans Today, producer/host of Heritage TV Atlanta, specially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.