Saturday, August 15, 2015

U.S. Already Completely Isolated If We Turn Down Iranian Deal

This post was supposed to be about Chuck Schumer. It is, but a little context?

Of course, I saw Fareed Zakaria's take on Schumer, and I've been following Josh Marshall's excellent writing along the way. More about them later.

As I often do, I go to the opposition to find out how cogent their arguments are on a given issue. One of the most ardent pundits in conservative circles is Charles Krauthammer, who writes for the Washington Post.

I'd never checked about whether Krauthammer is a Jew, but given the subject (Schumer's Jewish), I thought it's pertinent information. (I've always liked Jews, and I don't mean Woody Allen even if I do like his movies. I shouldn't need to explain further, other than I was a knee-jerk liberal supporter of Israel until Benjamin Netanyahu. I'm mostly Irish, BTW.)

I found this, in his own words, in Wikipedia:
His parents were Orthodox-Jewish and he went to a Hebrew day school. "I got a rigorous Jewish education. I know what it is to be a Jew. There's a difference between being nominally Jewish or sentimentally Jewish and being grounded in Jewish learning".
Okay, he's Jewish, according to him, really Jewish. Okay.

Now, nominally, he can be for or against the Iran deal if he has a cogent argument. He doesn't, it's obvious, so basically, Charles, fuck off, you goddam weasel. Read his column, hopefully carefully, to see if his argument holds. It doesn't and he's too smart to put such an argument together. So, he's harnessed distortions in order to support his OUTRAGE. It's probably in his contract. Here's a salient taste:
Congress won’t get to vote on the deal until September. But Obama is taking the agreement to the U.N. Security Council for approval within days . Approval there will cancel all previous U.N. resolutions outlawing and sanctioning Iran’s nuclear activities.
Meaning: Whatever Congress ultimately does, it won’t matter because the legal underpinning for the entire international sanctions regime against Iran will have been dismantled at the Security Council. Ten years of painstakingly constructed international sanctions will vanish overnight, irretrievably.
Even if Congress rejects the agreement, do you think the Europeans, the Chinese or the Russians will reinstate sanctions? The result: The United States is left isolated while the rest of the world does thriving business with Iran.
In the everybody-fucking-knew-this department, what's Krauthammer dribbling on about? Game over. You lost, the good guys won. Go home. He won't, but he's paid to not go home. But he did admit it's over. (Small note. Clearly he wrote this before the Security Council voted 15-0 in favor. Krauthammer weighed in on the 16th, the Council voted on the 20th.) He does have the right to say the deal sucked, but to the suggest that Congress should vote against it to seal the deal on American isolationism. I thought conservatives wanted to empower America, not make us look like losers.

More about Schumer in a minute. Here's the state of world opinion before Schumer announced his intent to vote against the deal (right in the middle of the Republican debate, Bold, Schumer!):
  • The U.N. Security Council unanimously approved the deal, repealing seven previous resolutions, but adding the crucial snap-back mechanism that makes the deal strong.
  • The same day, the European Union approved the deal, so Krauthammer's notion that Obama went to the U.N. to make the U.S. Congress irrelevant is either meaningless or a distortion. I'll say meaningless, giving Krauthammer the benefit of the doubt, although the implication is he's either unimaginative or uninformed. To be especially respectful, I'd have to say his comments were a distortion, since he's not stupid.
  • The Southeast Asian group, ASEAN, along with five large neighbors -- Australia, India, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea -- approved the deal August 6th. Many will notice the date, the seventieth anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing. If that isn't chilling, well, I can't help you. (I lived in Japan and visited Hiroshima twice.)
  • Pundits on the right claim to have found a holdout: Canada. Check that out at the Weekly Standard and the Observer but do notice that the telltale line showing Canada's steadfast resistance to the deal amounts to this solitary line: "We will examine this deal further before taking any specific Canadian action." Oh no, John Kerry just pissed his pants.
The only people in opposition are the Republicans in Congress (not including Jeff Flake of Ariz.), the entire GOP field, the hardliners in Iran, and, er, Chuck Schumer, not counting Chuck Norris and Ted Nugent.

So, on to Sen. Chuck Schumer. Read his statement here. I'll let Zacharia and Marshall take him apart. They do so with all the decorum they can muster. Then, if you want, google schumer iran deal and sort through the links. You'll be surprised to see how if falls out. But as you read Krauthammer, Schumer, Zacharia, and Marshall, do try to sort out what does or doesn't righ true. I land on the side of the Iran deal, but then I see the failure of the deal raining down disproportionately on us. Why? Because we broke it. Nobody else.

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