Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Obama: Iran's Washington Lobbyist



Months ago, I argued that the Iranian nuclear deal was so bad that it was hard to see how Barack Obama was acting as anything other than a lobbyist for the Islamic Republic. Tehran got virtually everything it demanded. Time and again, the U.S. constantly gave in to Iranian demands for more concessions.

The deal was so bad that Obama plotted to avoid the Constitution's treaty approval process because he knew it would never pass muster with the people's representatives.

The deal was so bad that Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes even admitted to lying about it in order to deceive the public.

Not surprisingly, we are still learning just how bad this deal is and how much we were lied to by the Obama Administration.

What is surprising is the source of the latest revelations -- Politico, a reliably liberal publication. Many Washington conservatives are shocked that Politico "committed an act of journalism."

Sarcasm aside, we are now learning that there was another "hidden giveaway" involved in the deal. Politico reports that the Obama White House "derailed its own much-touted National Counterproliferation Initiative at a time when it was making unprecedented headway in thwarting Iran's proliferation networks."

How so? Obama freed several Iranians who were intimately involved in Tehran's illegal weapons trade.

When Obama made the announcement, as part of a hostage swap, he again lied to the American people. On January 17, 2016, Obama said that he was releasing seven Iranians as part of a "one-time, humanitarian gesture." He added, "These individuals were not charged with terrorism or any violent offenses." He added that they were "civilians."

Here are the facts from Politico's investigation:

Three allegedly were part of an illegal procurement network supplying Iran with U.S.-made microelectronics with applications in surface-to-air and cruise missiles.

One was serving an eight-year sentence for conspiring to supply Iran with satellite technology and hardware.

In addition, the Justice Department dropped charges and international arrest warrants against 14 other men.

Three sought to lease Boeing aircraft for an Iranian airline that had supported Hezbollah.

A fourth was charged with conspiring to buy thousands of assault rifles for Iran.

A fifth was part of a procurement network that provided Iran with components for an especially deadly type of IED known to have killed hundreds of American troops in Iraq.

Politico writes that federal prosecutors and investigators "were shocked and angry." One former federal law enforcement supervisor said, "They didn't just dismiss a bunch of innocent business guys."

But there was more. The Obama Administration sabotaged active investigations. "Justice and State Department officials denied or delayed requests from prosecutors and agents to lure some key Iranian fugitives to friendly countries so they could be arrested," Politico writes.

A weapons proliferation expert added, "This is a scandal. The cases bear all the hallmarks of exactly the kinds of national security threats we're still going after. It's stunning and hard to understand. . ."

Thankfully, President Trump has ordered his national security team to reevaluate the Iranian nuclear deal. In the meantime, the White House should identify and fire any Obama officials involved in this scandal.

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