Congress seeks to undermine Iran deal by linking Iran with ISIS

Middle East
on 41 Comments

One of the consequences of the Iran Deal was the declaration by countless politicians that they were going to crack down on Iran’s sponsorship of terrorism. Even the White House signed on to this idea. Well now some of the backlash has officially begun: Congress is linking Iran with ISIS, even though Iran is fighting ISIS.

Few mainstream publications have picked up on the fact that in a response to the San Bernardino killings, the Congress last week passed legislation, which the president duly signed, that puts Iran in an axis of international-terrorist evil along with Syria, Iraq and Sudan. The legislation amends our country’s visa waiver program. Iranian dual nationals, as well as US citizens who have visited Iran, will need visas to get into the U.S.

Reuters:

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Friday said it was “absurd” that Tehran should be included on the list.

“No Iranian nor anybody who visited Iran had anything to do with the tragedies that have taken place in Paris or in San Bernardino or anywhere else,” he said in an interview with Middle East-focused website Al Monitor.

Secretary of State John Kerry promptly met with Zarif, his Iranian counterpart, to assure him that the new law doesn’t undercut the Iran deal. But the Iranians say that the legislation is the result of pro-Israel lobbying. And even the State Department describes Iran as a state sponsor of terrorism.

Iranians say the bill reflects pro-Israel lobbying. Reuters:

Iran said on Monday that Israeli lobbying was behind a new measure passed by the U.S. Congress that will prevent visa-free travel to the United States for people who have visited Iran or hold Iranian nationality.

The measure, which President Barack Obama signed into law on Friday, also applies to Iraq, Syria and Sudan, and was introduced as a security measure after the Islamic State attacks in Paris and a similar attack in San Bernardino, California.

Elham Khatami of the National Iranian American Council says she’s now a second-class citizen:

[In early December,] in a swift move that flew under the radar of many civil liberties and activist groups, the House passed the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act….

In the wake of the tragic terrorist attacks in San Bernardino and Paris, Republicans had fast-tracked the bill to the floor for a vote. In the process, they managed to insert into the legislation discriminatory language against dual nationals of Iraq, Syria and official state sponsors of terror — Iran and Sudan. The legislation has since been lumped into Congress’ annual omnibus appropriations bill and is expected to come to the Senate floor for a vote as early as Saturday.

More from Reuters‘ description of the Israel lobby angle:

Iran, a Shi’ite Muslim theocracy staunchly opposed to Sunni radicalism espoused by groups like Islamic State, says its inclusion on the list is intended to undermine a deal on its nuclear programme that Tehran reached with world powers, including the United States, in July, known as the JCPOA.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hossein Jaberi Ansari said in a televised news conference that the U.S. measure had been passed “under pressure from the Zionist lobby and currents opposed to the JCPOA”.

The administration wants to have it both ways on blaming Iran. Yesterday on National Public Radio, Adam Szubin, the counter-terrorism finance under secretary at the Treasury Department, also put Iran in the category of ISIS, as an international terror deliverer:

if you are familiar with the model of how al-Qaida or groups like Hamas and even Hezbollah have financed themselves, they’ve typically been heavily reliant on foreign donations, whether from state sponsors like Iran or whether from wealthy what we call deep-pocket donors, often in the Gulf. But that financing model is not ISIL. When you have a group that’s raising hundreds of millions of dollars in a year from internal sources, we don’t have those same chokepoints to go after in terms of the foreign flows.

Meanwhile John Kerry is doing fancy footwork, explaining the legislation away, in a letter to Javad Zarif.

we remain fully committed to the sanctions lifting provided for under the JCPOA. We will adhere to the full measure of our commitments, per the agreement.

At the State Department briefing Monday, reporters questioned why the legislation didn’t amount to a violation of the Iran Deal:

QUESTION: So the Iranians are concerned, apparently, that the – that legislation on the Hill, particularly the visa waiver legislation…  that it violates the nuclear deal. I understand that’s not your position, but I’m wondering if you share the concern that the Iranians have expressed about the changes to the Visa Waiver Program in that it could affect or harm the ability of the Iranians to take advantage of the sanctions relief that they will be getting under the deal.

MR [John] KIRBY: Well, certainly, the Secretary noted the concerns by Foreign Minister Zarif. You saw that he addressed that in his letter. You’re right, there’s no violation of the JCPOA or our commitments by dint of this new legislation. And the Secretary further made it clear that we’re going to implement this new legislation so as not to interfere with the legitimate business interests of Iran, such as in areas where the sanctions are going to be lifted when Iran has taken the key steps it needs to take to meet its own commitments under the JCPOA….

QUESTION: there’s a move afoot on the Hill to do all sorts of things Iran-related. And if it’s the Administration’s position that as long as the Iranians uphold their end of the deal, you’re going to hold – uphold your end of the deal, that would suggest to me that anything that you see as compromising the JCPOA you would oppose on the Hill.

MR KIRBY: Let me put it on – a different spin on this. I’d say that we’re going to meet – we have every intention of meeting all our commitments under the JCPOA. I mean, and that’s not going to change. We will meet our JCPOA commitments.

QUESTION: Why was Iran included to begin with? I mean, could you remind us why it was included in this thing, in these countries, among this group of countries?

MR KIRBY: Why what?

QUESTION: Why was Iran included?

MR KIRBY: Because it’s a state sponsor of terrorism.

QUESTION: Okay. But it is not in any way connected to ISIS and what’s going on. I mean, we have not seen —

MR KIRBY: It’s a state sponsor of terrorism —

QUESTION: Okay.

MR KIRBY: — and it’s still on that list. And that’s why travel to Iran was included in this measure.

QUESTION: So you don’t believe that this is maybe a back way to sort of nip at the Iran deal or to scuttle the Iran deal?

MR KIRBY: No, no. We’ve talked about this in the past.

Here is some more blindness in the media on these issues. NPR has continually deceived listeners about Sheldon Adelson’s agenda, and it did so again yesterday. Adelson is a leading opponent of the Iran Deal, as a supporter of Israel. He has called on President Obama to nuke Iran. But in a report on Adelson’s purchase of a Nevada newspaper, NPR once again leaves out the Israel angle of Adelson’s interests. It says blandly:

Adelson is also prominently involved in national politics.

That link is to a story about his on-line gambling concerns. But as Cory Bennett of the Hill said on CSPAN the other day– something I did not know till now– Iran is said to have undertaken a cyber-attack on Sheldon Adelson’s casino last year because of his call to nuke Iran.  The alleged cyber-attack:

Investigators determined that hacker activists were the ones who broke into servers belonging to the Las Vegas Sands Corporation in February 2014, costing the company more than $40 million in damages and data recovery costs, Bloomberg Businessweek reported Thusday citing a report by cybersecurity firm Dell SecureWorks.

The hackers were acting in retaliation to the company’s CEO, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson’s statement that Obama should detonate a nuclear bomb in Tehran, which stirred controversy around the world.

This is the battle behind the headlines. And in a transparent effort to get Adelson’s backing, as well as that of the Andrew Herenstein’s of the world, the neoconservative favorite in the Republican race, Senator Marco Rubio, has vowed to tear up the Iran deal on his first day in the White House if he’s elected.

Thus the ideological war over how much the U.S. should support Israel is playing out in global terms; and our media are shying away from the story.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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41 Responses

  1. Boomer
    December 24, 2015, 1:23 pm

    re “Sheldon Adelson’s statement that Obama should detonate a nuclear bomb in Tehran, which stirred controversy around the world.”

    Maybe it stirred controversy in other parts of the world, but I don’t recall any here in the U.S.A. In fact, I don’t recall seeing any comments about Adelson’s statement except at this site.

    Thanks for the report on the what Congress is doing re the Iran deal, and the usual mealy-mouth words from the Administration.

    • Annie Robbins
      December 25, 2015, 2:00 am

      Maybe it stirred controversy in other parts of the world, but I don’t recall any here in the U.S.A. In fact, I don’t recall seeing any comments about Adelson’s statement except at this site.

      it did get picked up in the US. if you google “adelson nuking iran” you get his lots of results. here’s one https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2013/10/23/adelson-obama-should-fire-nuke-to-send-message-to-iran/

      Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire who extensively funded numerous Republican campaigns in the 2012 election, said at a forum Tuesday that President Obama should fire an atomic weapon into the middle of the desert to send a message to Iran.

      “What are we going to negotiate about? What I would say is, ‘Listen, you see that desert out there? I want to show you something,'” Adelson said at Yeshiva University. “You pick up your cellphone, and you call somewhere in Nebraska, and you say, ‘okay, let it go.’ So there’s an atomic weapon goes over — ballistic missiles — in the middle of the desert that doesn’t hurt a soul.”

      Adelson continued: “Then you say, ‘See? The next one is in the middle of Tehran.’ So, we mean business. You want to be wiped out? Go ahead and take a tough position and continue with your nuclear development. … You want to be peaceful? Just reverse it all, and we will guarantee you that you can have a nuclear power plant for electricity purposes, energy purposes.”

      The comments were recorded and first reported by foreign policy blogger Philip Weiss, a self-described “progressive Jewish” journalist.

      • Boomer
        December 25, 2015, 10:00 am

        Annie, I am truly sorry that I said anything that prompted you to do work and post at 2:00 a.m. on Christmas day. Bless you for all the good work you do. I didn’t mean to express doubt that his comment was reported, just about the size of the controversy. Probably I was wrong about that too, but Adelson’s comments don’t seem to have reduced his influence among Republicans (with the possible, problematic exception of Mr. Trump). My guess is that most Republicans who learned of the comments didn’t take them seriously, or else agreed with them. Once again, I’m sorry to have caused you such bother. I’ll try to be more careful.

      • Annie Robbins
        December 25, 2015, 12:23 pm

        hey boomer, it’s no bother for me at all. plus, i am in calif — 3 hrs earlier than the site posting time (it was only 11 pm — not late at all). and it’s not “work”, i comment (usually) because — i like to. commenting is my favorite part of being on the internet. and merry christmas!

        i agree with you this video didn’t cause much of a “controversy” (other than the sheer outlandishness of talking about nuking a country so casually) but it was clarifying and got a lot of traffic here. although the references to him making this statement made it into several reports, mostly i’ve noticed it lately in comment sections (i noticed it referenced during the ‘trump meets adelson’ story). but i don’t think it changed anyones mind per se. i think the people who think like him will keep on doing so and those that don’t like him will keep using this revealing disclosure to demonstrate the mind set we’re up against. not sure what you mean about being careful, no worries tho.

      • RoHa
        December 25, 2015, 9:38 pm

        “i agree with you this video didn’t cause much of a “controversy” (other than the sheer outlandishness of talking about nuking a country so casually)”

        Those of us who live outside the USA regard this sort of thing as just standard issue American craziness.

  2. DaBakr
    December 24, 2015, 1:59 pm

    A rank apologist for the tyrannical mullah regime. In years to come the supporters of these evil mullahs with their IRG and basij to protect them from the citizens will be as reviled and ridiculed as the leftists that refused to see how evil the Soviet regime was. And with this “deal” and its billions in the pockets of dictators Obama and the cowards of the EU have guaranteed the mullahs grip on power for the next twenty years. Other then the brief financial relief some Iranians will feel from sanctions relief they will pay the price later w with their continued lack of freedom.

    ( But of course everybody knows how concerned pw is with certain select peoples human rights in deference to others. A real bonfide HR maven)

    • Krauss
      December 25, 2015, 1:39 pm

      Let me guess, your heart aches every single hour of the day for the Iranians and of course the solution is a coup.

      That all of this would destabilise the primary peer competitor of Israel in the region has of course nothing to do with it.

      Cut the crap, we all know you don’t give two shits about Iran if it weren’t for Israel.
      The neocon fairy tales, using liberal flowery rhetoric to push regime change to benefit Israel, is an exposed fraud at this stage. The only thing you will succeed in by talking about it is to remind us all about it so that we will not forget it. For that, I am grateful.

      Now go back to your little trollcage.

    • lysias
      December 25, 2015, 4:15 pm

      ISIS kills Shiites. Aren’t there plenty of Sunni Muslims (and Christians and Jews too, for that matter) who are not persecuted in the Mullahs’ Iran?

  3. Stephen Shenfield
    December 24, 2015, 7:44 pm

    When Adam Szubin says that ISIL is “raising hundreds of millions of dollars in a year from internal sources” one of the things he is referring to is the oil exported by middlemen through Turkish ports, much of which ends up in Israel for use or resale. So when he says “we don’t have those same chokepoints to go after in terms of the foreign flows” he is talking gibberish. What he means is that Israel is profiting from this trade and Israel is sacrosanct.

    • Krauss
      December 25, 2015, 1:41 pm

      Don’t forget that Israel has been treating wounded warriors of the al-Nusra Islamist group, a thuggish Islamist army almost as savage and brutal as ISIS.

      Yet we will not read that in the U.S. press – precisely because it undercuts Israel’s saintly image.

  4. Neil Schipper
    December 24, 2015, 8:57 pm

    Mondoweiss does no heavy lifting — does no independent investigation, does not cultivate and vet sources, provides no historical context… Mondoweiss skims the news, gleans factoids, weaves an inciteful narrative according to preordained conclusions.. floats in a bubble of “priveleged” sanctimony.. despicably shallow yellow journalism.

    Here are two serious articles that provide depth about Iranian actions in Iraq after 2003.

    The Shadow Commander
    Qassem Suleimani is the Iranian operative who has been reshaping the Middle East. Now he’s directing Assad’s war in Syria.
    By Dexter Filkins
    Qassem Suleimani — great Iranian intelligence master, leader of Quds Force
    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2013/09/30/the-shadow-commander?currentPage=all

    What We Left Behind
    An increasingly authoritarian leader, a return of sectarian violence, and a nation worried for its future.
    By Dexter Filkins
    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2014/04/28/what-we-left-behind

    Whatever America’s failures in deciding to go into Iraq — and there was a serious case for and against, plus, no serious opposition from Arab governments or the Arab street — it’s just a Trotskyite fantasy that America’s intent was to inflame and destroy according to some nefarious plot cooked up by the Israel Lobby.

    Trotskyites are sad puppies at having no power in America; they rarely recognize how unworthy they are of holding power.

    America worked hard, and spent big in blood and treasure (and domestic popularity, and international standing) trying to provide Iraq with some semblance of workable governing institutions. America was perhaps too “non-racist” in believing that a passion for accountable governance on the Arab street could overcome the megalomaniacal sectarian passions and allegiances that made the casual murder of institution-builders (mostly fellow Arab Muslims, as we’ve come to expect) commonplace.

    And, as demonstrated in the articles referenced above, Iranian networks — money, weapons, intelligence, logistics, fighters, jihadi suicidists — played a large role in the breakdown.

    Phil, your “la-dee-da, it’s all to do with the Jewish billionaires, and I’m the brave truth-to-power guy” routine.. it’s.. I just don’t see how you can keep it up.

    Does anyone serious take you seriously?

    • Mooser
      December 24, 2015, 10:06 pm

      “Does anyone serious take you seriously?”

      Take a look at the stats for Mondo. Then go start a blog, telling people not to read it.

    • Kay24
      December 24, 2015, 10:15 pm

      Strange, even those who do not take Mondoweiss seriously, take time to make inane comments, and attack the website. MDW has been here from 2006 and I have no doubt can keep going on for years, as long as those zionists in Israel keeps the military occupation and land thefts going.

      • Mooser
        December 25, 2015, 12:53 pm

        “take time to make inane comments, and attack the website”

        Yes, but, you see, those are ‘negative hits’ and NUPV (Negative Unique Page Views) and counted against the website.

    • talknic
      December 25, 2015, 1:01 am

      @ Neil Schipper

      Odd Dexter Filkins
      Qassem Suleimani — great Iranian intelligence master, leader of Quds Force
      link to newyorker.com is uncorroborated, un-named, hearsay

      “America worked hard, and spent big in blood and treasure (and domestic popularity, and international standing) trying to provide Iraq with some semblance of workable governing institutions”

      After illegally invading that country, slaughtering countless civilians and destroying Iraq’s infrastructure and working governing institutions based on the transparently false notion that were WMDs

      “as demonstrated in the articles referenced above, Iranian networks — money, weapons, intelligence, logistics, fighters, jihadi suicidists”

      Assertions and accusations are not a demonstration. Nor are they evidence BTW

      • RoHa
        December 25, 2015, 1:27 am

        There was a time when I never thought I would write that a country was better off when it was run by a brutal, repressive, murderous, war-mongering, CIA-sponsored, paranoid thug.

        But Iraq was.

        Even with those novels.

    • Shingo
      December 25, 2015, 3:37 pm

      What We Left Behind

      An increasingly authoritarian leader, a return of sectarian violence, and a nation worried for its future

      Ummm he was put in power by the US and removed by them from power.

      and there was a serious case for and against

      There wasn’t serious case for it, which is why it was entirely based on lies.

      it’s just a Trotskyite fantasy that America’s intent was to inflame and destroy according to some nefarious plot cooked up by the Israel Lobby.

      It was the Trotskyites aka neocons and Israeli firsters, who dreamed the whole thing up and pushed for it.

      They should be tried for war crimes. That is what government accountability would look like.

      America worked hard, and spent big in blood and treasure (and domestic popularity, and international standing) trying to provide Iraq with some semblance of workable governing institutions.

      Iraq already had these institutions you racist pig. Iraq was one of the most progressive, educated and secular states in the Arab world until the US destroyed those institutions.

      The Iranians backed the same government as the US. There is zero evidence Iranian provided weapons or fighters. The jihadi suicidists cane from the US and Israeli ally, Saudi Arabia.

      Wars destroy countries. The don’t build them.

      Does anyone serious take you seriously?

    • Atlantaiconoclast
      December 27, 2015, 11:02 am

      “Trotskyite fantasy”? You do know don’t you that the neocons are reformed Trotskyites, right? And support for Assad is not support for terror. It is support against Islamic extremism. Furthermore, Hezbollah is not a terrorist organization for resisting Israeli occupation and aggression.

      • Mooser
        December 27, 2015, 4:56 pm

        “You do know don’t you that the neocons are reformed Trotskyites, right? “

        Oh, you know it! They were the real thing, battle hardened, Kremlin trained, “Trotskyites” ( Ah, Trotsky! The Party gave him its awl!) until they “reformed” and became neo-conservatives.
        I hate it when that happens.

  5. Neil Schipper
    December 24, 2015, 9:28 pm

    I do realize that Weiss wrote

    .. his call to nuke Iran

    and that

    .. Adelson’s statement that Obama should detonate a nuclear bomb in Tehran ..

    is from the i24news link. That story is also weak, but at least provides a bit of context. Which Weiss elides.

    • Neil Schipper
      December 24, 2015, 10:01 pm

      [The above comment was supposed to be follow-up to a comment that got eaten. Original follows. Perhaps the moderator can repair.]

      .. Adelson’s statement that Obama should detonate a nuclear bomb in Tehran ..

      By selective quotation and absence of context, this is a highly misleading account of what Adelson said.

      I hate to imagine living in a world where Stalinist liars like Phil Weiss have significant influence.

      • talknic
        December 25, 2015, 12:26 am

        @ Neil Schipper “I hate to imagine living in a world where Stalinist liars like Phil Weiss have significant influence”

        You’re already living in a world where blatant liars like Netanyahu, Adelson, the Zionist Federation, the JNF and consecutive Israeli Governments and spokespersons have had and still have significant influence http://talknic.wordpress.com/

      • RoHa
        December 25, 2015, 1:14 am

        Sorry, I’m a bit confused. You make it clear that Phil is a Stalinist (good for you, Phil!) but who are the Trotskyites who oppose him?

      • oldgeezer
        December 25, 2015, 12:47 pm

        While you haven’t yet responded with your opinion with respect to the jpost reporting it still needs to be pointed out that adelson was promoting the use of nuclear weapons in an offensice capacity. Nothing else would destroy the NPT quicker than such an action and a nuclear arms race on a world wide basis would be the result. Who could afford to not have one. In fact with the threats emanaying from washington and israel it is not possible to blame one of they ever did try to acquire one. There is no proof that they are and no I am not a fan of the mullahs.

        Additionaly this would be an egregious breach of the NPT which assured nonnuclear states would not be threatened or the targets of nukes by those possessing them.

        Why is it zionists are such low life brigands and thieves. They are a threat to everyone.

      • Mooser
        December 25, 2015, 12:49 pm

        “I hate to imagine living in a world where Stalinist liars like Phil Weiss have significant influence.”

        “Neil”, baby, you just study the ‘three R’s’ and you won’t have to. When your vision of a Stalinified Wiessian dystopia comes to pass, you’ll know just what to do. ‘Tinkerty-tonk’, sweet prince!

      • Mooser
        December 25, 2015, 1:52 pm

        “The above comment was supposed to be follow-up to a comment that got eaten.”

        Neil, don’t worry. The Moderators have assured us that comments almost never get “eaten” by the system.

      • Shingo
        December 25, 2015, 2:02 pm

        By selective quotation and absence of context, this is a highly misleading account of what Adelson said.

        So you admit the quote is legitimate, but then resort to the usual has bars tactic when confronted with an inconvenient quote from a Zionust lunatic by arguing that no context is given.

        So what context are we missing troll?

      • Rashers2
        December 26, 2015, 8:33 am

        Stalinists, Trots? Whatever happened to the poor Leninists, Schipper? What offence have they committed, to be punished by exclusion from your little fusillade? The facts of the matter are that the US legislature has passed anti-Iranian legislation which APPEARS to be motivated by those in the US, who are p*ssed off that the JCPOA got signed.
        “……in deciding to go into Iraq — and there was a serious case for and against, plus, no serious opposition from Arab governments or the Arab street……” – this is unadulterated horsesh*t: there was NO plausible evidence either of WMD or of a link between Saddam’s government and 9/11. Why do you imagine certain prominent NATO countries (not noticeably left-wing of persuasion) refused to join Bush-Blair’s “coalition of the willing”? Could it have been because their intelligence services had received a friendly “gypsy’s warning” from the BND that WMD was a fairytale spun by an unreliable neurotic? As for the Arab street, the Arabs on my particular street of moderate and secular Araby saw straight through the pretence surrounding the Iraq invasion; and were not happy about it – particularly as the consequences would undoubtedly be (as transpired) to increase both the Iraqi Shi’ites’ power and Iranian influence within Iraq. Well, well, well, who’d a thunk it?
        You may play the “lefty” card as much as you like because it helps to reveal your starting point. A conservative myself, I don’t mind being termed a “left-winger” when it comes to I/P because the characterisation has become as distorted and corrupted as has the label “anti-Semite”, when used by Zio-paths and Israel apologists. “Left-wing” in the Zionist lexicon has come to mean, “critical of Israel and/or of Zionism and/or supportive of the Palestinian cause/basic rights for Palestinians”.
        While you contemplate how history may judge the “left-wingers’” position on the Iran deal, spend a few more seconds contemplating how history may judge the rôle of the USA in creating the climate in which the Iranian revolution of 1979 could occur and the incumbent régime be swept into power.

    • Shingo
      December 25, 2015, 2:09 pm

      That story is also weak, but at least provides a bit of context. Which Weiss elides.

      How is the story weak? What context do you require?

  6. Egbert
    December 25, 2015, 7:26 am

    Syria, Iran, Iraq and Hezbollah are the major components of the ground forces attacking ISIS. The US coalition bombs power stations, deserted villages and Syrian army bases. It certainly does not make significant attacks against ISIS oil looting convoys.

    Israel, other than providing the final stage of laundering for the ISIS oil transported from Turkey, provides ISIS with sanctuary and medical treatment. It has an agreement with Russia that it may make airborne attack in Syria when it is in Israel’s ‘national security’ interest. When doing this, Israel does not attack the ISIS forces in the Golan, it attacks Hezbollah and Syrian forces that are attacking these ISIS thugs. ISIS in the Golan is not a ‘national security’ threat to Israel. It serves to guard more Golan territory for Israel’s benefit.

    • Krauss
      December 25, 2015, 1:45 pm

      Good comment. The regimes attacking ISIS are brutal dictatorships but we’ve come to the point in the Middle East where all major sides are evil – it’s only a question of supporting a lesser evil.

      This will hopefully pass one day, but any remaining delusions about exporting Jeffersonian democracy by the end of a barrel or from 10,000 ft above ground is by now a shattered carcas.

      • a4tech
        December 25, 2015, 1:56 pm

        it’s only a question of supporting a lesser evil.

        Support these foreign actors in order to reach what goals, and for whom? And who do “we” represent in this case? Thanks.

      • Atlantaiconoclast
        December 27, 2015, 11:09 am

        I can think of other regimes in the ME that are more brutal than the Assad OR the Iranian regime, or Hezbollah.

  7. watzal
    December 25, 2015, 9:07 am

    It shouldn’t surprise anyone that the Zionist controlled U.S. Congress and the republican hopefuls for the 2016 presidential race are eager to shoot the Iran deal down in flames. These mobbed-up Zionist representatives in Congress try to link Iran to ISIS. Not Iran supports ISIS but the Netanyahu regime in Tel Aviv. Terrorists from ISIS and al-Nusra front are treated for free in Israeli hospitals, perhaps the Saudi regime is paying for it, and then sent back in order to terrorize the legitimate Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad. The only regime in the Middle East that should be boycotted is the Zionist one. It is the only threat to world peace.

  8. James Canning
    December 25, 2015, 12:50 pm

    Yes, US politicians who are stooges of the Israel lobby, are up to some of their typical tricks.

  9. Krauss
    December 25, 2015, 1:46 pm

    I view this legislation as blowback, yes, but also a kind of after-payment from the U.S. Congress. The Israel lobby wanted to shoot down the deal. Now it gets these late, last-minute “gifts” for the holidays.

    10 years from now it will get nothing. 20 years from now it will be gone.

    • Rashers2
      December 26, 2015, 7:41 am

      …and, in the meantime, the US of A continues to do irretrievable damage to its reputation as a result of being in thrall to a pernicious, little Fascist régime halfway across the world.

    • Atlantaiconoclast
      December 27, 2015, 1:47 pm

      I hope you are right, but I think Israel will continue to clean our clock till more Americans learn what Israel has done to this country over the years.

  10. benjoya
    December 26, 2015, 10:00 pm

    i’m sure someone will correct me if i’m wrong, but IIRC one of the san bernadino killers was american and had traveled to saudi arabia; his wife was pakistani, and yet KSA and pakistan are not among the countries being “monitored” by this legislation.

  11. talknic
    December 29, 2015, 2:34 am

    Washington: A Russian ship left Iran on Monday carrying almost all of Iran’s stockpile of low-enriched uranium, fulfilling a major step in the nuclear deal struck last summer and, for the first time in nearly a decade, apparently leaving Iran with too little fuel to manufacture a nuclear weapon.

    The shipment was announced by Secretary of State John Kerry and confirmed by a spokesman for Russia’s civilian nuclear company, Rosatom​. Kerry called it “one of the most significant steps Iran has taken toward fulfilling its commitment” and US officials say that it may now be only weeks before the deal reached in July will go into effect. http://www.smh.com.au/world/iran-nuclear-deal-11-tons-of-enriched-uranium-handed-over-to-russia-20151229-glw5dq.html

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