February 23, 2010
Iran's wicked conditions prior to
Barack Obama's fanciful "no preconditions" now present themselves --
with the mullahs' rogue nuclear program 13 months closer to producing a bomb.
Last week, Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton focused attention on the Iranian regime's powerful and tentacle
radical militia, the Iranian
Revolutionary Guards (IRG)."Iran is moving toward a military
dictatorship," Clinton said."The trend with this greater and greater
military lock on leadership decisions should be disturbing to Iranians as well
as those of us on the outside."
Trend? IRGpower is old news, and one of a multitude
of wicked conditions candidate Barack Obama rhetorically obscured amidst his
promises of hope, change, "smart" diplomacy and decisive negotiations
with the robed dictators sans preconditions.
For three decades, the Iran's
Khomeinist clerics and their "armed wing" (theIRG) have entwined so
tightly it's tough to separate the snakes. In themid-1990s, the IRG, having supplanted
the Iranian Army as the regime's primary military force, became demonstrably
influential in foreign affairs. As the ire of the Iranian people rose, spurred
by corruption and a failing economy, theIRG's domestic clout increased.
When public anger with the regime
spilled into Tehran's streets last year, IRG commanders monitored local police
to ensure "reliability" and prepared to crackdown. The Khomeinist
street militias that continue to attack pro-democracy demonstrators have IRG
The regime that dubbed Israel a
"one bomb state" seeks nuclear weapons. The IRG, via its spies and
special forces, links to Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon. Iran also
wages war on Iraq's emerging democracy.
For these and other loathsome
prior conditions, differentiating between the IRG and theregime of President
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is difficult.
Yet Obama extolled
president-level negotiations with this Siamese-twin thugocracy. Obama's
less-fossilized apologists may now defend his initiative as naive, but when he
made it many of us called it what it was: stupid because it gave a brittle and
brutal regime a political success without a price. It also played into the
regime's game of strategic delay. The regime gives a little when sanctions loom,
slides when Europeans fret, hugs Chinese oil brokers when America rattles
sabers but always keeps the uranium centrifuges spinning.
preconditions" pitch was part of a cynical campaign ploy a fawning press
corps trumpeted. Recall Obama promised "smart diplomacy" and accused
the Bush administration of failing to use diplomatic means.
What blarney. Ambassador Ryan
Crocker's congressional testimony in September 2007addressed Iran's diplomatic
intransigence. After Gen. David Petraeus told Congress that "militia
extremists" in Iraq were directed "by the Iranian Republican Guard
Corps' Quds Force," Crocker provided his insight.
When Rep. Tom Lantos, in a
dismissive and arrogant tone, asked Crocker if the U.S. would pursue diplomacy
with Iran, Crocker replied that he had talked with the Iranians, and "the
conclusion I came away with after a couple of rounds was that the Iranians were
only interested in the appearance of discussion, of being seen at the table
with the U.S. instead of actually doing serious business."
Crocker provided Obama and his
media entourage with a teaching moment -- but it was ignored, or worse,
castigated as propaganda, to the detriment of Iran's own oppressed people and
everyone seeking to avoid a nuclear war in the Middle East.
Is Obama finally educable? Does
he understand the threat presented by Khomeinists with nuclear arms? Does he
understand a summit with an American president is apolitical coup for
dictators, and granting one should require concessions from noxious regimes?
Until the thugs make them, keep direct discussions at low or unofficial levels
-- like George W. Bush did.
Clinton's hype of old news does
provide cover for a policy shift by the administration.
Let's hope that change is coming.
Petraeus, following Clinton's statement, said the U.S. has put Iran on a
"pressure track." Good. The Green Movement opposition needs support.
Sanctions that truly sanction are difficult without Russian and Chinese
blessings. That means Obama must prepare for military strikes on nuclear