Thursday, August 05, 2021

Hitting the Goalposts

"JCPOA: A Catalogue of Moving Goalposts" (Crooke). 

The most interesting issue about the original deal - and thus about the revival of negotiations in what amounts to Barry's third term, when he corrects for the reversals of Trump - is how the hell did the original deal ever happen.  Not from the Iranian point of view, but from the American point of view.  The Lobby was dead set against it, as were the Republican (((donors))) like Sheldon.  The kind of things that Israel doesn't want don't tend to happen.  So there must have been some great arguments made in the back rooms, arguments so convincing that they appealed to the Democrat (((donors))), flying in the face of the Lobby itself.

There seem to have been two things going on.  First, Barry, the King of Fracking, wanted to keep oil and gas flows going in directions that benefitted American interests.  That meant keeping Iranian gas out of Europe - so American LNG could take over (they knew about Nord Stream, but always assumed they could block it) - and being able to exert some control over where Iranian oil went (just having some sway gives Americans control over Asia).  Secondly - and this is where the (((donors))) become interested - the big thinkers were anticipating the current state of rocketry in Lebanon and in Iran, and realized that the current perilous state of affairs for Israel was inevitable unless Iran could be managed into having an interest in keeping the Americans happy (it was assumed at the time that Syria was a non-factor due to its inevitable Yinonization, as nobody anticipated Putin showing up in 2015!).  Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.  The American big thinkers were actually well ahead of the Israelis, with Bibi allowing Israel to fall into danger by blowing all possibility of fixing the situation with partisan political stunts (this reason alone is why a lot of (((donors))) were overjoyed to see the end of Bibi).

Nothing has changed except to get worse for Israel, and that deterioration has emboldened the lobbying efforts of the Lobby, who are now screaming about Iranian missiles, with an obvious effect in the Khabinet.  We're seeing this in the stickiness of the negotiations.  At the same time, somebody on the American side is clearly telling the Iranians that a 'clean' deal is still possible, hence periodic statements from Iran that a deal is immanent.  At least some Americans want to keep the Iranians at the table, hoping that a quick deal announcement will trump the Lobby (as it did the first time).  I'm not optimistic - just one Maxwell blackmail threat can sink anything - and no deal will be a huge long-term win for real Iranian interests, with Iran then allowed to do business with friendlies, rather than the evil failing and flailing Empire.  They can then just keep building missiles, and pointing them at Israel.

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