IRAN REJECTS IRAQI-US “COSMETIC SURGERY,” BUT US-IRAN COOPERATION IS NOT IMPOSSIBLE 1/6

Posted on  by Elijah J Magnier

By Elijah J. Magnier:

Following the assassination of Brigadier General Qassem Soleimani, head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps – Quds Brigade, the Supreme Leader Sayyed Ali Khamenei vowed before the world, but above all for his allies, that the US would pay the price by leaving West Asia. What Sayyed Khamenei said reflects his opinion and wishes as a Supreme Leader. These wishes do not always coincide with the State of Iran’s behaviour, which must build a relationship with other states according to Iran’s national interests. There is always a flexible line between what the Leader of the Revolution says and how he would like the Iranian government to act. 

However, when Sayyed Khamenei noted that no direct meetings would be accepted unless the US withdraw the harsh sanctions, he drew an unbreakable line the government will have to stick to, without necessarily including all sanctions but certainly the most important ones. Hence, Vienna’s indirect dialogue between the Iranians and those who signed the JCPOA (nuclear deal) but did not withdraw unilaterally as former President Donald Trump did.

Although Sayyed Ali Khamenei announced no time frame for the withdrawal of all US troops from West Asia, there is no doubt that Iran is ready to sit at the same table as its enemy if the outcome could help ease the economic situation in Iran. To Iran, the US administration, regardless of whether who sits at the top of its pyramid is republican or democrat, is not trustworthy. It can revoke international agreements, blatantly disregarding international law. However, in many circumstances, Iran’s supreme Leaders Ayatollah Khomeini and Sayyed Ali Khamenei have allowed the state to meet the Americans so as to favour Iran’s interests even if, from Iran’s perspective, the shadow of war with the US will always hover over the country as long as American forces are in the area. 

The Iranian officials are aware that the Biden administration faces many domestic and foreign challenges, with Russia and China as urgencies. However, for Tehran, its well-being represents the first urgency, and it is unwilling to understand the range of Biden’s priorities. This is why Tehran will not allow the US to rest in Iraq and why it continues to support its own allies in Yemen, Syria, Lebanon and Gaza. 

In Iraq, officials are promoting some “cosmetic surgery” to apply to the US forces’ presence, as a compromise between what Iran wants and where Iraqis believe their interests lie. Suggesting replacing the US troops with a “European NATO” is a way to tell Biden’s administration that withdrawal is not really on the Iraqi agenda. With or without a nuclear deal, the US can only dream of a peaceful Mesopotamia for its forces in the months to come if the withdrawal is not reached or replaced by a “European NATO”. 

However, total compliance and return to the nuclear agreement will undoubtedly slow down the Iraqi resistance’s aggression against the US forces, which, more than ever, will not abandon Mesopotamia to China, Russia and Iran…

Nuclear Deal Committee Concludes Meeting, Iran Reiterates Call for Lifting US Ban

April 9, 2021

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Nuclear Agreement Joint Committee ended the second round of its 18th regular meeting Friday in the Austrian capital Vienna. After the meeting, the delegations of Iran, Russia, China, France, Britain, Germany, the European Commission and the International Atomic Energy Agency agreed to hold the next meeting next Wednesday at the level of assistants to foreign ministers of member states.

Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for political affairs Abbas Araqchi says Tehran will not stop any of its nuclear-related activities until Washington lifts the whole sanctions and returns to the 2015 nuclear deal.

Emphasizing on Iran’s principle stance on lifting of sanctions, Araqchi said that Tehran will not halt or even reduce the pace of its nuclear activities in particular in uranium enrichment sector.

The 20 percent enrichment of uranium is going forward even with the faster pace than the speed that the Iranian parliament envisaged in its law, he said, adding that 20 percent enriched uranium are being produced now.

The trend will go on until an accord will be reached, which will oblige the US to lift all of its sanctions, he stated, stressing that the whole sanctions should be lifted in one stage.

He further pointed to the negotiations with Europeans, Russia and China, noting that the claim that Iran is discussing with Europeans and they are holding talks with the Americans is not true, because the Iranian delegation in Vienna are negotiating with a set of current member states of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), including the UK, France, Germany as well as Russia and China; then, they put forward the issue with the US in a way they know themselves.

Araqchi went on to say that there are signs that the Americans are reviewing their own stance and move forward to lift all sanctions, but the Iranian side is not still in a position to make a judgement, because the negotiations have not been finalized.

According to the Iranian diplomat, a long way is still ahead; although, the pace of negotiation is moving forward and the atmosphere of the talks are constructive.

Source: Al-Manar English Website and IRNA

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لماذا لا تملك واشنطن خياراً غير العودة للاتفاق النوويّ؟ Why does Washington have no choice but to return to the nuclear deal?

**English Machine translation Please scroll down for the Arabic original version **

مفاوضات فيينا تنتهي بنجاح.. واتفاق على استكمال المباحثات

لماذا لا تملك واشنطن خياراً غير العودة للاتفاق النوويّ؟

ناصر قنديل

يتزامن في 22 أيار المقبل الموعد المعلن من إيران للانتقال الى مرحلة تخصيب لليورانيوم على درجة 40%، مع مرور ثلاثة شهور على دخول الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن الى البيت الأبيض، والزمن القياسي بالنسبة لمهمة بحجم الملف النووي الإيراني، من موقع إدارة أميركية تدخل للتوّ الى موقع القرار وتمسك بعشرات الملفات الدولية والداخلية الضاغطة والملحّة، وهذا يعني أن انعقاد اجتماع فيينا الذي يجري تحت عنوان وضع خريطة طريق لعودة واشنطن وطهران الى التزاماتهما بموجب الاتفاق النووي، تعبير عن سرعة استثنائية بمفهوم العلاقات الدولية، مع التزام مبدئي من الطرفين الأميركي والإيراني بالاستعداد للعودة الى التزاماتهما، وخلافهما حول كيفية هذه العودة، كما قال المبعوث الأميركي الخاص للملف النووي، روبرت مالي، مع اعترافه بأن مناقشة القضايا الخلافية من خارج الاتفاق كقضية الصواريخ البالستية الإيرانية والنزاعات الإقليمية، يجب أن تنتظر لما بعد العودة الى الاتفاق الأصلي. وهذا الاعتراف الأميركي يزيل أول عقبة من طريق العودة للاتفاق.

الواضح أن النقاش الدائر في فيينا لا يتصل بمبدأ العودة الأميركية عن العقوبات، ولا بمبدأ العودة الإيرانية عن تخفيض الالتزامات بموجبات الاتفاق، فمن الزاوية القانونية المبدئية يشكل الاتفاق مقايضة بين التزامين، أميركي برفع العقوبات، وإيراني بقبول ضوابط للملف النووي، ونحن اليوم أمام إعلان متبادل لترجمة هذا الاستعداد، تراجعت لأجله واشنطن عن دعوات سابقة للرئيس بايدن وفريقه تشترط للعودة إلى الاتفاق ورفع العقوبات باتفاق آخر، يضمن مزيداً من الضوابط التقنية، ويمتد لزمن أطول، ويطال تفاهمات أشمل نحو ملف الصواريخ البالستية الإيرانية وملفات النزاع الإقليمي، وهذا أكبر تحول يفتح الباب للعودة إلى الاتفاق النووي، لأن ما تبقى يقوم على قاعدة سياسية تتصل برغبة وقدرة الفريقين الأميركي والإيراني بتسهيل المهمة على الشريك الآخر في الاتفاق. فواشنطن تطلب من طهران، كما قال مالي، مساعدتها على تسويق العودة للاتفاق أمام الداخل الأميركي، بينما تتمسك طهران بمعادلة قانونيّة قوامها، أن طهران خفضت التزاماتها رداً على الانسحاب الأميركي من الاتفاق، ولم تنسحب من الاتفاق، بل أبقت بنداً من بنوده يجيز هذا التخفيض مقابل إخلال الأطراف الأخرى بموجباتها، ولذلك تتشدد طهران باعتبار العودة الأميركية إلى الاتفاق، وترجمتها بإلغاء كل العقوبات التي صدرت بناء على الانسحاب الأميركي، لتتم مطالبة إيران من قلب الاتفاق ووفقاً لبنوده بالعودة الى موجباتها.

في فيينا تشكلت لجان من المشاركين الدوليين مع كل من الفريقين الأميركي والإيراني نسختان من لجنتين، واحدة للالتزامات الإيرانية وواحدة للالتزامات الأميركية، لإنتاج تصوّر تفاوضيّ مع الوفد الإيراني في ملفي العودة للالتزامات والتراجع عن العقوبات، ومثله تصور تفاوضي مع الوفد الأميركي المقيم خارج قاعة الاجتماعات لملفي العودة عن العقوبات والعودة للالتزامات، والبدء بمحاولة تقريب التصورين سعياً لمنطقة وسط، والمقصود بالمنطقة الوسط هو تحديداً، ما هو حجم العقوبات الذي يمكن التفاهم مع واشنطن على رفعها قبل العودة الإيرانية إلى التزاماتها، مقابل ضمانة المشاركين الدوليين بأن إيران ستعود، وتقبله إيران للبدء بالخطوة الأولى في العودة إلى التزاماتها، وما هي المدة التي تطلبها واشنطن وتقبلها إيران لاستكمال إنهاء العقوبات، قبل أن تُقدم إيران على الخطوة الأخيرة في العودة إلى التزاماتها.

الطريق الذي فتح في فيينا محكوم أميركياً باللاعودة، وباب النهاية الوحيد له هو العودة إلى الاتفاق بأقل المخاطر والخسائر الممكنة، وفقاً لمعادلة قالها كل من وزير الخارجية الأميركية توني بلينكن ومستشار الأمن القومي جايك سوليفان، ومضمونها السباق مع الزمن للعودة إلى الاتفاق قبل أن تمتلك إيران المقدرات اللازمة لإنتاج أول سلاح نوويّ، طالما هي خارج الاتفاق، والموعد الأميركيّ المرتقب لذلك هو نهاية شهر أيار.

فيديوات متعلقة


Why does Washington have no choice but to return to the nuclear deal?

Nasser Kandil

– Next May 22 coincides with the announced date of Iran to move to a stage of uranium enrichment at a level of 40%, with the passage of three months after the entry of US President Joe Biden to the White House, to hold dozens of international and internal files that are pressing and urgent, and this means that the Vienna meeting that is taking place under The title of laying out a road map for the return of Washington and Tehran to their obligations under the nuclear agreement is an expression of exceptional speed in the international relations, with an initial commitment on the American and Iranian parties to prepare for a return to their commitments, and their disagreement over how to do this return, as said by the US special envoy for the nuclear file, Robert Malley, admitting that outside the agreement such as Iran’s ballistic missile issue and regional conflicts, discussing issues outside the agreement, such as the Iranian ballistic missile issue and regional disputes, must wait until after the return to the original agreement. This American admission removes the first obstacle to returning to the agreement.

– It is clear that the debate in Vienna is not related to the principle of U.S. return from sanctions, nor to the principle of Iran’s return from reducing obligations under the agreement, from the initial legal point of view the agreement constitutes a trade-off between two commitments, the U.S. lifting of sanctions, and Iran accepting controls on the nuclear file, and today we are facing a mutual declaration to translate this readiness, for which Washington has retracted earlier calls for President  Biden and his team to return to the agreement and the lifting of sanctions with another agreement, guaranteeing more technical controls, extending longer, and extending broader understandings toward the Iranian ballistic missile file and regional conflict files, the biggest shift opens the door to a return to the nuclear agreement, because what remains is based on a political base related to the desire and ability of the U.S. and Iranian teams to facilitate the task over the other partner in the agreement. Washington is asking Tehran, Mali said, to help it market the return to the agreement in front of the U.S. interior, while Tehran adheres to a legal equation, that Tehran has reduced its obligations in response to the U.S. withdrawal from the agreement, and has not withdrawn from the agreement, but has kept one of its provisions authorizing this reduction in exchange for other parties violating its terms.  Tehran therefore tightens its consideration of the U.S. return to the agreement, translated into the abolition of all sanctions issued based on the U.S. withdrawal, so that Iran is asked to reverse the agreement and in accordance with its terms to return to its obligations.

– In Vienna, committees of international participants were formed with both the U.S. and Iranian teams, two versions of two committees, one for Iranian commitments and one for U.S. commitments, to produce a negotiated vision with the Iranian delegation in the return of commitments and the lifting of sanctions, as well as a negotiated vision with the U.S. delegation residing outside the meeting room to lift sanctions and return to commitments, and to begin trying to bring the two scenarios closer together in an effort to find a settlement. What is meant by the settlement is specifically, what is the size of the sanctions that can be agreed upon with Washington to lift them before Iran returns to its commitments, in exchange for the international participants ’guarantee that Iran will return, and Iran accepts it to start the first step in returning to its commitments, and what is the period that Washington demands and Iran accepts to complete End the sanctions, before Iran takes the final step in returning to its commitments

– The road opened in Vienna is doomed to  return, and the only end door to it is to return to the agreement with the least possible risks and losses, according to an equation said by U.S. Secretary of State Tony Blinken and National Security Adviser  Jake Sullivan, and its content is the race against time to return to the agreement before Iran has the capabilities to produce the first nuclear weapon, as long as it is outside the agreement, and the expected U.S. date is the end of May.

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Related

Iran rules out step-by-step lifting of sanctions

Biden knows that any deal with Iran will be attacked by the Republicans as selling out to Iran

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
This file photo shows Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh fielding questions from reporters.

by PressTV, Tehran

[ Editor’s Note: Iran seems to have found some middle ground. It will meet in Vienna with the remaining JCPOA countries with the US ‘down the hall’, or one could say ‘in the dog house’, until it comes back into full compliance with the agreement.

Nothing could show more weakness than negotiating with someone who has walked out of a deal unilaterally, and only wants to dicusss coming back into it on the terms that it can renegotiate the deal, which is obviously a continuing reneging on the deal. That would be a humilation for Iran.

An Iranian government doing so would have zero chance of being reelected, and hence the Biden administration’s opening strategy was not a confidence builder. So far, as a token concession, it has put on the table releasing a few billion of frozen (stolen) Iranian funds, a mistake made to pretend the US was being flexible.

On the American side Biden knows that any deal with Iran will be attacked by the Republicans as selling out to Iran, but he should not be concerned about that at all. We recently had the large numbers of the Republican party after the January 6th insurrection vote not to certify the election, fearing the punishment of our ex-Mafia-in Chief president.

The saying about this situation that we learned about as kids was ‘people who live in glass houses should not throw stones’. If Biden flubs this he runs the risk of the Iranian hardliners coming to power, where he will then be blamed for that by the Repubs.

While the Republicans have openly launched the most massive nationwide voter supression campaign in modern history, we are way past having to worry about making them happy.

The world is watching while America devours itself on the one hand and then is posing that it should be the world leader of a new ‘coalition’. Some would suggest that is not a bet that makes good sense to even entertain… Jim W. Dean ]


Iran cannot prevent its being tormented by the US, but it will not be pushed around

First published … April 03, 2021

In an exclusive interview with Press TV, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh rules out any step-by-step lifting of sanctions imposed on the Islamic Republic under former US president Donald Trump.

“As has been clearly stated many times, no step-by-step plan is being considered,” Khatibzadeh said on Saturday.

“The definitive policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran is the lifting of all US sanctions, whether those which Trump reimposed after withdrawing from the JCPOA or those which he initiated, as well as sanctions imposed under any other heading,” he said.

“Obviously, this lifting of sanctions must be effective and must be verified by Iran,” Khatibzadeh added.

His remarks came in response to claims made by US State Department deputy spokeswoman Jalina Porter about a planned meeting by representatives of Iran and other countries in Vienna Tuesday to discuss the troubled 2015 nuclear deal.

Restoring the nuclear agreement would be a major step, nearly three years after Trump scrapped it and imposed new sanctions or reimposed others lifted under the deal, forcing Iran to take a series of “remedial” measures in response to the decision.

Porter said Friday that the discussion would focus on “the nuclear steps that Iran would need to take in order to return to compliance with the terms of the JCPOA”, using initials for what is formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

In the talks, American officials would be down the hall while British, German, French, Chinese and Russian officials meet with Iran.

And that would be joined with discussion of “the sanctions relief steps that the United States would need to take in order to return to compliance, as well,” Porter said, an acknowledgment that the United States is currently in violation of the accord.

Khatibzadeh stressed that “the suspension of Iran’s remedial measures and their reversal will take place only after the lifting of all sanctions and its verification” by the Islamic Republic.

In a tweet on Friday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the aim of the Vienna session would be to “rapidly finalise sanction-lifting & nuclear measures for choreographed removal of all sanctions, followed by Iran ceasing remedial measures”.

“No Iran-US meeting. Unnecessary,” he added Friday.

American officials have said they were willing to meet directly with the Iranians, but the Iranian government has insisted on working through the Europeans, a stance which Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi reiterated Friday.

“We only negotiate with the members of the JCPOA. The parties that are now known as the P4+1 will be our negotiating partners. They can talk to the other sides as they wish. We have no direct or indirect dialogue with the Americans,” he said.


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Report: Iran to Cease 20% Enrichment if US Lifts “All Sanctions”

Report: Iran to Cease 20% Enrichment if US Lifts “All Sanctions”

By Staff, Agencies

An unnamed senior Iranian official recently revealed that Iran will stop its 20% uranium enrichment “only if the US lifts all the sanctions” that were imposed under the Trump administration and have been kept in place by the Biden White House.

The Iranian official informed Press TV that “20% uranium enrichment is in line with Paragraph 36 of the [2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action], and will be stopped only if the US lifts all the sanctions.”

“The Biden administration is losing time, and if it fails to lift the sanctions soon, Iran will take the next steps, which will be further reduction” of its commitments to the nuclear deal, the senior official said.

In January, the Iranian parliament boasted that its scientist had produced 17kg of enriched uranium in less than a month at its Fordow nuclear facility. This exceeds their purported production timeline which listed Iran’s goal at a rate of 120kg of 20% enrichment uranium per year.

The unidentified individual’s remarks came as a response to the Monday report from Politico that the US was seeking to issue a new proposal that requires Iran to ease its nuclear practices in exchange for relief from US sanctions.

The proposal, which has not been confirmed by the Biden camp, is expected to request that Iran ceases its use of advanced centrifuges and the pullback on enrichment of uranium supplies to 20% purity, among other efforts.

A senior official to the Biden administration would not give details on the conversations leading up to the proposal, but insists that “we are ready to pursue a mutual return to the [Iran deal].”

Shahrokh Nazemi, the head of press at Iran’s mission to the United Nations, responded to the Politico revelation by indicating that “the [deal] needs no specific proposal,” and that the US needs to follow commitments to the 2015 agreement.

Sanctions placed on Iran have put the country in challenging situations over the years.

Mahmoud Jarafi, the deputy head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, told the Isna news agency that “because of [US] sanctions, we have problems with bank transfers, and if no solution is found, we will even be forced to stop work at the first unit of Bushehr.” Bushehr is a plant that operates as part of a joint nuclear program between Iran and Russia.

Moscow has argued for the use of nuclear energy for civilian purposes in Iran, but US sanctions have plunged the country into an economic crisis. Iran has long maintained that its nuclear program was meant for peaceful purposes and not for making bombs.

The Biden administration’s alleged proposal is slated to be set forth this week, setting the stage for future talks between the US and Iran. However, the lack of diplomatic ties is sure to be one of the greatest hurdles in reaching nuclear negotiations.

Iran has remained head strong in their use of nuclear energy, and has recently solidified an investment deal with China that is sure to cause reaction from the United States.

Related

Breaking: Iran stands firm…US must rejoin JCPOA before talks begin

Iran’s military power continues to grow in quantity and quality so it is better able to defend itself

March 8, 2021

No negotiation will take place between Iran, US before sanctions removed: Source tells Press TV

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[ Editor’s Note: Neither Iran nor Biden are under any significant pressure to move first on fixing the JCPOA. Both know that a misstep could torpedo an effective solution, and those involved in ‘blinking first’ would be blamed for the failure.

Both the US and its EU JCPOA partners want to pretend that it is inconsequential that Iran is not reaping any trade benefits from the deal, although Iran gave up most of its nuclear program to come to the JCPO Agreement.

Iran does not want to be put into a position of accepting the breach of the deal as “no big thing,” and hence no compensation would need to be discussed. Iran would then be in a much weaker position for a new deal, with the obvious caveat that it could be broken again, making Iran twice the fool.

Imam Reza Shrine, Mashad, Iran – Jim Dean archives

Iran has nothing to lose by holding firm on the idea that it is owed its benefits from the deal, where the EU has also had a free ride, having offered nothing more than promises.

Iran’s military power continues to grow in quantity and quality, so it is better able to defend itself; and if the Western Powers squeeze it any more, it would probably dial back its nuclear commitments, like they have already started to do.

So Iran’s offer is simple, to “give us our money, remove the sanctions, and we will go back into full compliance again”. Or if the US continues to demand renegotiations, Iran could counter that it would consider that track if control and oversight of Israel’s nuclear program would go on the table at the same time. Israel would refuse, of course.

Frankly, I would have played that card already and watched the hypocritical Western world fake nuclear hypocrites deal with openly protecting Israel’s right to have them… what I call the ‘nuclear supremacist’ position. “We are Jews and we can have or do anything we want or we will call you bad names.”

Biden is not about to go to war over Iran, and Iran knows that. He would look foolish to pick up the Trump sanctions mantle, but it would be awkward for the Republicans to fry him on that.

What Biden does want is to deescalate the Persian Gulf to release US military forces to intimidate China on the sea and Russia in the Arctic. But he can’t do it all at once. Regions much be secured before new battles begun Jim W. Dean ]

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Iran is in no hurry to surrender to Western demands. It is stronger now than ever due to the continued threats.

First published … March 08, 2021

There will be no negotiations between Iran and the United States on any matter before Washington removes illegal sanctions it has unilaterally imposed on Tehran, an informed security source tells Press TV.

The security source, which talked to Press TV on condition of anonymity on Sunday, noted that the Western countries’ interpretation of recent remarks by Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif about a new plan for negotiations with the United States are erroneous and no such plan exists.

“The idea of a step-by-step plan for starting talks between Iran and the United States has been rejected at the highest levels of the Islamic Republic and there will be no contact between Iran and the US before sanctions are removed,” the security official added.

The security source’s remarks came after Rouhani’s Thursday statements in which the Iranian chief executive slammed US for violating the 2015 nuclear deal, adding that Washington should take practical steps to rejoin the deal and lift all sanctions it has re-imposed on Tehran.

Rouhani noted that if the US took steps to that effect, Iran would reciprocate “action with action.”

“The US, as the one who violated the deal, shall lift all sanctions and take practical steps in order to be able to return to the JCPOA,” Rouhani argued, using an acronym to for the landmark nuclear accord signed between Iran and six countries in 2015.

The Iranian foreign minister also said a day later that Tehran would soon present a “constructive concrete plan of action” through proper diplomatic channels.

He made the remark in reaction to earlier statements by an Iranian politician who claimed in an interview that if the West sent “clear signals” to Iran and, for example and announced that the US sanctions would be removed within a year, Tehran would be ready to restart negotiations with Washington.

“As Iran’s FM & chief nuclear negotiator, I will shortly present our constructive concrete plan of action—through proper diplomatic channels,” Zarif tweeted

Iranian polity is vibrant & officials express diverse opinions

But those opinions should NOT be confused with state policy

As Iran’s FM & chief nuclear negotiator, I will shortly present our constructive concrete plan of action—through proper diplomatic channels#CommitActMeet

— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) March 5, 2021Some Western circles had mistakenly taken Rouhani’s and Zarif’s remarks as a sign that Iran is ready for renewed talks with the US with European sources saying that Tehran is giving positive signs about opening informal talks about its nuclear program.

Blinken paves the way for a return to the nuclear deal in compliance with Iran’s terms بلينكين يمهّد للعودة إلى الاتفاق النووي رضوخاً لشروط إيران

**English Machine translation Please scroll down for the Arabic original version **

Blinken paves the way for a return to the nuclear deal in compliance with Iran’s terms

Nasser Kandil

– In the context of a radio interview with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, she said, “We have come a long way towards preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, and all of this was subsequently abandoned by the Trump administration. Current U.S. Secretary of State Tony Blinken responded to Clinton’s question about his expectations of the outcome of Iran’s absence from the 5+1 meeting, with the participation of Russia and China, by saying that Iran “is speeding up towards the day when it will have the ability to produce enough fissile material for a nuclear weapon in a very short time», considering that when the agreement was reached in 2015, Iran was tending to make this period a mere weeks. Blinken warned that allowing this to happen, and Iran’s acquiring a nuclear weapon, or being on the threshold of possessing a nuclear weapon, “enables it to act with greater impunity,” noting that taking military action against it would have “different consequences,” concluding that “the best answer is” We reached the agreement “that” put the nuclear program in a box, cut its tracks to be able to produce the materials needed to make a nuclear weapon, “and pushed the period called” the time of penetration to more than one year. “

– Blinken said that because of the agreement «we had very strong sanctions » through the use of the Snapback mechanism, to automatically reimpose them if Iran violates the agreement, adding that “after we got out of the deal, Iran felt good,” as if saying: “We can move forward; We no longer comply with the commitments we made. ” And Blinken went on to say,“ And now she returns to that point, where she can produce fissile material for a very powerful weapon in a short time. He stressed that «we have an interest in returning it to the box, then see if we can actually build something longer and stronger in terms of the duration of the agreement, as well as deal with some of the other actions that Iran is taking, because we have a real problem with ballistic missiles and what they are doing in their vicinity».

– In practice, Blinken rearranged President Joe Biden’s administration vision papers regarding the Iranian nuclear file, from the stage on which Iran should start the first step, to the stage we started the first step with the indirect release of Iranian deposits of more than ten billion dollars in South Korea and Iraq, in exchange for Iran attending a joint session Within the 5 + 1 platform, and then here he is rearranging the cards again with Iran’s refusal of less than an American declaration to retract the sanctions as a condition for Iran’s retreat from implementing its obligations stipulated in the agreement. He withdraws from the table the issues of Iranian missiles and Iran’s regional role to the post-return phase. Regarding the nuclear agreement, and the implementation of its obligations from both sides, that is, the lifting of sanctions in return for Iran’s return to its obligations, Blinken’s equation is clear, that Iran is comfortable not returning and approaching with a missile speed that it has sufficient capabilities to produce a nuclear weapon, and that Washington has an interest in blocking this path, and that the abolition of sanctions is a reasonable cost to achieve this goal, because the alternative is to confront a situation that “enables it to act with impunity.” “Knowing that carrying out military action against it will have various consequences,” concluding that “the best answer we came to was the agreement” that “put the nuclear program in a box and cut its paths to be able to produce the materials they need to build a nuclear weapon, and pay the nominal period at the time of penetration.” To more than one year ».

– The Biden administration in Blinkin’s tongue goes back to what the Barack Obama administration reached when Biden was vice president, betting on more time to bring Iran to an agreement that includes the missile file and the regional situation will mean giving Iran more time to acquire the capabilities to produce a nuclear weapon. The bet that something has changed as a result of the sanctions imposed by the administration of former President Donald Trump, is disappointing, as Iran appears more comfortable in its steps outside the agreement than it was in the days of previous negotiations, so priority is given to returning to the agreement and then it is possible to know what should be done to discuss the rest, “We have an interest in returning that to a box, and then seeing if we can actually build something longer and stronger in terms of the duration of the agreement, as well as deal with some other measures that Iran is taking, because we have a real problem with ballistic missiles and what they are doing in their vicinity.”

بلينكين يمهّد للعودة إلى الاتفاق النووي رضوخاً لشروط إيران

ناصر قنديل

في سياق حوار إذاعيّ مع وزيرة الخارجية السابقة هيلاري كلينتون قالت فيه «قطعنا شوطاً طويلاً نحو منع إيران من الحصول على سلاح نووي، وكل ذلك جرى التخلي بعد ذلك عنه من قبل إدارة ترامب. أجاب وزير الخارجية الأميركية الحالي توني بلينكين على سؤال كلينتون حول توقعاته لنتائج غياب إيران عن الاجتماع الذي وافقت عليه واشنطن ضمن صيغة الـ 5+1، بمشاركة روسيا والصين، بالقول بأن إيران «تسرع نحو اليوم الذي سيكون لديها فيه القدرة على إنتاج ما يكفي من المواد الانشطارية لسلاح نووي في وقت قصير جداً»، معتبراً أنه عند التوصل إلى الاتفاق عام 2015، كانت إيران تتجه إلى جعل ​​هذه المدة مجرد أسابيع. ونبّه بلينكن إلى أن السماح بحدوث ذلك، وامتلاك إيران سلاحاً نووياً، أو أن تكون على عتبة امتلاك سلاح نووي «يمكنها من التصرف مع إفلات أكبر من العقاب»، علماً بأن القيام بعمل عسكري ضدها ستكون له «عواقب مختلفة»، مستنتجاً أن «أفضل إجابة توصلنا إليها كانت الاتفاق» الذي «وضع البرنامج النووي في صندوق، وقطع مساراته لتكون قادرة على إنتاج المواد التي تحتاج إليها لصنع سلاح نووي»، ودفع المدة المسماة «وقت الاختراق إلى أكثر من عام واحد».

قال بلينكن إنه بسبب الاتفاق «كانت لدينا عقوبات قويّة للغاية»، عبر استخدام آلية «سناب باك»، لإعادة فرضها بصورة تلقائية إذا انتهكت إيران الاتفاقية، مضيفاً أن «الأهم من ذلك هو نظام المراقبة والتفتيش الأكثر تدخلاً الذي نمتلكه على الإطلاق لأي اتفاق للحدّ من الأسلحة». وقال إنه «بعد خروجنا من الصفقة، شعرت إيران بحال جيدة»، كأنما تقول: «يمكننا المضي قدماً؛ لم نعد نمتثل للالتزامات التي تعهدنا بها»، واستطرد بلينكن: «وها هي الآن تعود إلى تلك النقطة، حيث يمكن أن تنتج مواد انشطارية لسلاح في غاية القوة في وقت قصير»، وشدّد على أن «لدينا مصلحة في إعادة ذلك إلى صندوق، ثم معرفة ما إذا كان بإمكاننا بالفعل بناء شيء أطول وأقوى من حيث مدة الاتفاق، وكذلك التعامل مع بعض الإجراءات الأخرى التي تتخذها إيران، لأن لدينا مشكلة حقيقية مع الصواريخ الباليستية وما تقوم به في جوارها».

عملياً أعاد بلينكين ترتيب أوراق رؤية إدارة الرئيس جو بايدن تجاه الملف النووي الإيراني، من مرحلة على إيران أن تبدأ الخطوة الأولى، إلى مرحلة بدأنا الخطوة الأولى بالإفراج غير المباشر عن ودائع إيرانية تزيد عن عشرة مليارات دولار في كوريا الجنوبية والعراق، مقابل حضور إيران لجلسة مشتركة ضمن منصة الـ 5+1، ثم ها هو يعيد ترتيب الأوراق مجدداً مع رفض إيران لما هو أقل من إعلان أميركي بالتراجع عن العقوبات كشرط لتراجع إيران عن تنفيذ موجباتها التي نص عليها الاتفاق، فيسحب عن الطاولة قضيتي الصواريخ الإيرانية والدور الإقليمي لإيران إلى مرحلة تعقب العودة إلى الاتفاق النووي، وتنفيذ موجباته من الفريقين، أي رفع العقوبات مقابل عودة إيران الى التزاماتها. ومعادلة بلينكين واضحة، أن إيران مرتاحة لعدم العودة والاقتراب بسرعة صاروخية من امتلاك مقدرات كافية لإنتاج سلاح نووي، وأن واشنطن صاحبة مصلحة بقطع الطريق على هذا المسار، وأن إلغاء العقوبات كلفة معقولة لتحقيق هذا الهدف، لأن البديل هو مواجهة وضع «يمكنها من التصرف مع إفلات أكبر من العقاب»، مضيفاً، «علماً بأن القيام بعمل عسكري ضدها ستكون له عواقب مختلفة»، مستنتجاً أن «أفضل إجابة توصلنا إليها كانت الاتفاق» الذي «وضع البرنامج النووي في صندوق، وقطع مساراته لتكون قادرة على إنتاج المواد التي تحتاج إليها لصنع سلاح نووي، ودفع المدة المسمّاة وقت الاختراق إلى أكثر من عام واحد».

تعود إدارة بايدن بلسان بلينكين الى ما توصلت اليه إدارة باراك أوباما يوم كان بايدن نائباً للرئيس، وهو أن الرهان على مزيد من الوقت لجلب إيران إلى اتفاق يتضمن ملف الصواريخ والوضع الإقليمي، سيعني منح إيران المزيد من الوقت لامتلاك مقدرات إنتاج سلاح نووي، وأن الرهان على أن ثمّة ما تغير بفعل العقوبات التي فرضتها إدارة الرئيس السابق دونالد ترامب، يكشف عقماً وخيبة، فإيران تظهر أكثر راحة في خطواتها خارج الاتفاق مما كانت عليه أيام المفاوضات السابقة، لذلك يعطي الأولوية للعودة إلى الاتفاق وبعدها يمكن معرفة ما يجب فعله لبحث الباقي، بقوله، «لدينا مصلحة في إعادة ذلك إلى صندوق، ثم معرفة ما إذا كان بإمكاننا بالفعل بناء شيء أطول وأقوى من حيث مدة الاتفاق، وكذلك التعامل مع بعض الإجراءات الأخرى التي تتخذها إيران، لأن لدينا مشكلة حقيقية مع الصواريخ الباليستية وما تقوم به في جوارها».

Iran Won’t Hand Over Data to IAEA Until Sanctions Lifted – AEOI

Iran Won’t Hand Over Data to IAEA Until Sanctions Lifted - AEOI

By Staff, Agencies

Spokesman for Atomic Energy Organization of Iran [AEOI] Behrouz Kamalvandi said on Monday that Iran will not hand over data to the International Atomic Energy Agency [IAEA] until the US sanctions are lifted.

He made the remarks in briefing to the parliament National Security and Foreign Policy Commission hearing.

Kamalvandi said that some representatives had questions about the agreement between
the AEOI and the IAEA and that he gave explanation on the issue in the hearing.

The spokesman added that the agreement with IAEA was compliant to parliament’s legislation requiring the government to halt Additional Protocol and inspections beyond the IAEA Safeguards Agreement.

Kamalvandi added that Iran gave three-month moratorium to end the voluntary acceptance of the IAEA Additional Protocol and IAEA agreed that Iran would save nuclear information by itself until three months later and then, if sanctions were lifted, the information would be handed to the IAEA; otherwise, all the information would be deleted.

During the three-month moratorium, according to Kamalvandi, no access, inspections or protocol statement would be provided by Iran.

The spokesman stressed that the agreement with the IAEA is for three months, adding that if other parties to the JCPOA fulfilled their obligations under the deal in the above-mentioned period, the government would inform the parliament through a report so that the legislature could make a decision.

Continuation of sharing information is in the interest of both sides, because the IAEA needs to have the information to be able to make verification and broad evaluation, Kamalvandi added.

He said that the IAEO offered members of parliament to visit nuclear sites to watch the process of enforcing the law in question closely.

On the possibility that three European parties to the JCPOA would cooperate with the US to pass an anti-Iran resolution in the next IAEA Board of Governors session, Kamalvandi underlined that the European Troika has made a non-constructive move that must stop.

The start of the return to nuclear deal train انطلاق قطار العودة للاتفاق النوويّ

**English Machine translation Please scroll down for the Arabic original version **

The start of the return to nuclear deal train

Nasser Kandil

– The speed with which the administration of US President Joe Biden deals with the Iranian nuclear file does not apply to what is being fancied and promoted by those who linked their fate in the region with the illusion of American supremacy and Iran’s weakness, who said that months will pass before Washington considers the Iranian nuclear file, within a week of Biden’s inauguration, he appointing Robert Maley, known for his positions calling for returning to the agreement without delay, as special envoy on Iran, for returning to the agreement without delay and discussing issues of disagreement under the umbrella of the agreement, to the point of the choice that the President adheres to.

– A month before Biden entered the White House, two files were moving in parallel, the file of the restoration of US-European relations being the entrance to the understanding on the road-map to return to the nuclear understanding with Iran, which was translated by a meeting, the first of its kind in five years, that includes the US Secretary of State and foreign ministers. France, Germany and Britain, during which Washington announced its readiness to attend a meeting within the framework of the 5 + 1 formula, with the presence and participation of Iran. US President Joe Biden expressed to the Munich Security Conference his readiness to engage in a formula that would open the way for a return to the nuclear agreement with Iran, with reference to the files of the dispute with Iran, and the intention to solve it by negotiating and annexing it to the agreement, which of course is rejected by Iran. In parallel, the second file, which is the U.S. pressure on Saudi Arabia from the gate of stopping arms deals under the slogan of stopping the war on Yemen, and declassifying Ansar Allah from the lists of terrorism, to release the investigations related to the killing of journalist Jamal Al-Khashoggi and the role revealed by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

– Washington began the preparations for the return to the agreement, with President Biden’s contact with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and putting him in the form of the American decision, as reported by Reuters, and Washington took decisions in the size of legitimising the return to the agreement and withdrawing the US legal cover for any sanctions that were imposed on the third parties after the American withdrawal from the agreement in the era of former President Donald Trump, by withdrawing the request submitted by the Trump administration to the UN Security Council to re-impose the UN sanctions on Iran that were lifted in accordance with the UN resolution that approved the agreement, and the withdrawal book that recognises the illegality of the previous US request, and in parallel it cancelled Washington restrictions that the Trump administration had imposed on Iranian diplomats in New York.

– Iran welcomed Washington’s steps, but it was not satisfied that it did not solve the issue of sanctions, which depends on Iran’s retreat from the measures it has taken to reduce its obligations stipulated in the agreement, and the most important measures that it will take within days unless Washington offers convincing measures for Iran to back down from the sanctions. In the days leading up to February 23, there are signs that Tehran is asking Europe to take steps that translate its commitment to the Iran agreement, and Washington’s withdrawal of an earlier request to return to UN sanctions on Iran and prove the illegality of the request, putting at the forefront the hypothesis that Europe will activate a mechanism Financial trading with Iran called  Anstex, which Europe was unable to operate in the time of the Trump administration and can now be activated and proven to be useful, with billions of dollars belonging to Iran held in European banks, and Iranian deals with European companies frozen pending payment mechanism.

– President Biden has repeated more than once the phrase, that America has returned, boasting that this is an expression of America’s diplomatic strength, meaning that America has returned to its glory days and its ability to determine the paths of the world, and which is being said that America has only returned to the nuclear agreement, and that the way back is not according to the whims and desires of its president, who discovers every day the limitations of his options and the difficulty of acting as dictated by the balance of power that is no longer in favour of his country in the world, in parallel with preserving face, claiming supremacy, the ability to draw paths, and demonstrating retreat in the form of dictation. Time has changed, the equations have changed, the options are limited, and the state of denial will not help, and swallowing the bitter cup one time, is less bitter.

انطلاق قطار العودة للاتفاق النوويّ

ناصر قنديل

لا تنطبق السرعة التي تتعامل من خلالها إدارة الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن مع الملف النووي الإيراني مع ما يتوهّمه ويروّج له الذين ربطوا مصيرهم في المنطقة بوهم التفوّق الأميركي وضعف إيران، والذين قالوا إن شهوراً ستمرّ قبل أن تنظر واشنطن في الملف النووي الإيراني، فبدأ تعيين روبرت مالي مبعوثاً خاصاً حول إيران، خلال أسبوع من تسلّم الرئيس بايدن، وأشارت شخصية هذا المبعوث المعروفة بمواقفها الداعية للعودة إلى الاتفاق من دون إبطاء ومناقشة قضايا الخلاف تحت مظلة الاتفاق، إلى وجهة الخيار الذي يلتزمه الرئيس الأميركي.

قبل أن ينقضي شهر على دخول بايدن الى البيت الأبيض، كان ملفان يتحرّكان بالتوازي، ملف ترميم العلاقات الأميركية الأوروبية من مدخل التفاهم حول خريطة طريق العودة الى التفاهم النووي مع إيران، الذي ترجمه اجتماع هو الأول من نوعه منذ خمس سنوات يضمّ وزير خارجية أميركا ووزراء خارجية فرنسا وألمانيا وبريطانيا، أعلنت خلاله واشنطن استعدادها لحضور اجتماع ضمن إطار صيغة الـ 5+1، بحضور ومشاركة إيران، وتوجه موقف الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن أمام مؤتمر ميونيخ للأمن بالاستعداد للانخراط في صيغة تفتح الطريق للعودة إلى الاتفاق النووي مع إيران، تحت سقف دائم للإشارة لملفات الخلاف مع إيران، ونيّة حلها بالتفاوض وضمها للاتفاق، وهو طبعاً ما ترفضه إيران. وبالتوازي كان يتحرك الملف الثاني وهو الضغط الأميركي على السعودية من بوابة وقف صفقات السلاح تحت شعار وقف الحرب على اليمن، وإلغاء تصنيف أنصار الله عن لوائح الإرهاب، وصولاً للإفراج عن التحقيقات الخاصة بقتل الصحافي جمال الخاشقجي وما تكشفه من دور لولي العهد السعودي محمد بن سلمان.

بدأت واشنطن إجراءات التمهيد للعودة إلى الاتفاق، باتصال أجراه الرئيس بايدن برئيس حكومة الاحتلال بنيامين نتنياهو ووضعه في صورة القرار الأميركي كما أوردت وكالة رويتر، واتخذت واشنطن قرارات بحجم شرعنة العودة للاتفاق وسحب الغطاء الشرعي أميركياً عن أية عقوبات نجمت على الأطراف الثالثين بعد الانسحاب الأميركي من الاتفاق في عهد الرئيس السابق دونالد ترامب، وذلك من خلال سحب الطلب الذي قدّمته إدارة ترامب إلى مجلس الأمن الدولي لإعادة فرض العقوبات الأمميّة على إيران التي رفعت بموجب القرار الأمميّ الذي صادق على الاتفاق، وما في كتاب السحب من اعتراف بعدم شرعية الطلب الأميركي السابق، وبالتوازي ألغت واشنطن تقييدات كانت إدارة ترامب قد فرضتها على الدبلوماسيين الإيرانيين في نيويورك.

إيران رحبت بخطوات واشنطن، لكنها لم تكتف بها باعتبارها لا تحل قضية العقوبات التي يتوقف على رفعها تراجع إيران عن الإجراءات التي اتخذتها بتخفيض التزاماتها التي نص عليها الاتفاق، والأهم الإجراءات التي ستتخذها خلال أيام ما لم تُقدم واشنطن على إجراءات مقنعة لإيران بالتراجع عن العقوبات. وفي الأيام الفاصلة عن موعد 23 شباط ستشهد خطوات، برزت مؤشرات على وجهتها بمطالبة طهران لأوروبا باتخاذ خطوات تترجم التزامها بالاتفاق مع إيران، وبسحب واشنطن لطلب سابق بالعودة للعقوبات الأممية على إيران وإثبات عدم شرعية الطلب، ما يضع في الواجهة فرضية إقدام أوروبا على تفعيل آلية المتاجرة المالية مع إيران المسمّاة أنستكس، والتي عجزت أوروبا عن العمل بها في زمن إدارة ترامب وبات بإمكانها تفعيلها وإثبات جدواها، مع مليارات الدولارات العائدة لإيران والمحجوزة في المصارف الأوروبية، والصفقات الإيرانية مع شركات أوروبية والمجمّدة بانتظار آلية التسديد.

كرر الرئيس بايدن في أكثر من مرة عبارة، إن أميركا عادت، متباهياً بأن ذلك تعبير عن القوة الدبلوماسيّة لأميركا، قاصداً أن أميركا عادت الى أيام عزها وقدرتها على تقرير مسارات العالم، والذي يجري يقول إن أميركا عادت فقط إلى الاتفاق النووي، وإن طريق العودة ليس على هواها ومقاس رئيسها، الذي يكتشف كل يوم محدودية خياراته وصعوبة التصرّف بما تمليه موازين القوة التي لم تعد لصالح دولته في العالم، بالتوازي مع حفظ ماء الوجه وادعاء التفوق والقدرة على رسم المسارات، وتظهير التراجع بصورة الإملاء من فوق. فالزمن تغير والمعادلات تغيّرت، والخيارات محدودة، وحال الإنكار لن تنفع، فتجرّع الكأس المرة دفعة واحدة أقل مرارة.

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Joe Biden Adopts a Trump Approach to Iran

Lawrence Davidson is professor of history emeritus at West Chester University in Pennsylvania. He has been publishing his analyses of topics in U.S. domestic and foreign policy, international and humanitarian law and Israel/Zionist practices and policies since 2010.

An Analysis () by Lawrence Davidson

9 February 2021

Part I—Joe Biden, the Good Stuff

All right! Let’s hear it for Joe Biden! Our new president is leading us in the direction of domestic sanity, and there are even hints of progressive potential in his evolving agenda. Under his leadership, we might soon master the Covid-19 plague and dig ourselves out of our near-depression economic straits. This is terrific!

Some good news when it comes to foreign policy as well. You’ll remember that in Trump’s determination to “make “American great again” (MAGA), the former president decided that international organizations and cooperation were impediments to national greatness. Thus, he systematically withdrew from a number of alignments and also scorned international law. This approach appears to have been part of a MAGA scheme to subvert international order. Its nihilistic undertones were highlighted by the creepy leaders who seemed to warm Trump’s heart. He found men such as the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, along with a long list of dictators ranging from Rodrigo Duterte in Philippines to Abdel Fattah el-Sisi inEgypt, to be really congenial. There was also Trump’s warm admiration for the Russian leader Vladimir Putin. 

President Biden has saved us from this sort of delinquency. He is now operating under new and saner marching orders: “diplomacy is back” and multilateralism is in. The U.S. has recommitted to the international effort to slow down global warming and has rejoined the World Health Organization. Biden has ended all participation in the immoral Yemen civil war and, so it is reported, told the Russians to keep their invasive cyber-fingers to themselves. 

At this point you might have the urge to celebrate what appears to be a full 180-degree turn from Donald Trump’s demented worldview. But hold on, that is not quite the case. Sadly, but perhaps not surprisingly, it appears that a residual lawlessness can be found in at least one the Biden’s foreign policies. We can recognize it in the game he is playing with Iran. 

Part II—Scuttling the JCPOA

Recall that in 2015 then-President Obama invested a lot of political capital, not to mention putting forth a remarkable display of good sense, in helping to negotiate a multilateral agreement with Iran. This is known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and it was multilateral because it included not just the U.S. and Iran but also the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council: the United States, the United Kingdom, Russia, France, and China as well as Germany (collectively referred to as the P5+1). Basically, the agreement stated that, under a regime of international monitoring, Iran would forgo any development of nuclear weapons and convert its nuclear facilities to peacetime pursuits. In exchange, the P5+1 would lift all nuclear-related economic sanctions, freeing up tens of billions of dollars in oil revenue and the release of frozen assets. It was a rare display of effective diplomacy and it worked—until Obama’s successor, Donald Trump, unilaterally scuttled the deal. 

Trump withdrew from the agreement in early May 2018. By January 2020 he had increased the number of Iran-related sanctions to over one thousand. In 2019, Trump was suggesting that if Iran wanted to enter into new negotiations with the U.S., he would consider lifting some of the sanctions. Iran refused to begin the negotiating process over again with Trump. On 15 January 2021, five days before leaving office, Trump added new sanctions. Why did he display such maliciousness? Besides a bizarre hatred for anything Obama had achieved, and the disdain for international cooperation which supposedly stood in the way of his MAGA fantasies, there are other factors. Trump is a truly amoral schemer (we might think of him as a modern-day lawless Borgia). And so he almost naturally fell in with amoral regimes with active domestic lobbies in the U.S. (such as Saudi Arabia and Israel), as well as a “pay to play” approach for the votes and donations of Americans who have a grudge against or fear of Iran. Here we can name not only the Zionists, but also the wealthy Iranians who took refuge in the U.S. after Iran’s 1979 revolution. Many of these are Iranian monarchists who want to see regime change in Iran through the return of a shah (king).

Under the circumstances, the Iranian government reaction has been understandable: they see themselves as the aggrieved party. They had negotiated the JCPOA in good faith. They had met the conditions of the agreement to the satisfaction of international monitors. The other side had failed to respond as promised. Not only had the U.S. broke the agreement without cause, but it had then blackmailed its European allies into breaking their commitments under the agreement. This was done by the Trump administration declaring that any party that broke Washington’s sanctions against Iran would themselves be sanctioned.

After a year or so, Iran, noting that it was the only party paying attention to the deal and that the sanctions still applied, began to slowly back away from the nuclear agreement’s provisions. However, it was not until January 2020 that the Iranians announced they would no longer limit their number of centrifuges and thus their capacity to enrich uranium. Even then it was not the obscene number of American sanctions or the gross failure of the Europeans to abide by their promises that finally “broke the camel’s back.” It was Trump’s ordering of the murder of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on 3 January 2020—essentially an act of war, and certainly one in violation of international law.

Part III—Joe Biden, the Bad Stuff

Now Trump is gone and we have Joe Biden, who, by the way, has not done the right thing and affirmed that his administration would rejoin the Iran nuclear deal. Instead he declared that “I will offer Tehran a credible path back to diplomacy. If Iran returns to strict compliance with the nuclear deal, the United States would rejoin the agreement as a starting point for follow-on negotiations” (my emphasis). Later he said that the subsequent negotiations would involve the Islamic Republic’s “violations of human rights and Iran’s role in the regional conflicts.” On its face, this is not an invitation to return to a stabilizing status quo ante, or even a supposed “credible path back to diplomacy.” It is a take-it-or-leave-it demand. This position is remarkably similar to that of Trump posturing for new negotiations back in 2019. And since, as of 7 February 2021, Biden has refused to lift sanctions on Iran—has refused to cease driving that country into poverty—these are no longer Trump’s sanctions. Biden now owns this horror show. Here are some of Biden’s fatal steps.

It was about nine days into the new administration that Biden’s officials began to reference foreign policy and Iran. First appeared Jake Sullivan, Biden’s national security adviser, who told the U.S. Institute of Peace that “a critical early priority has to be to deal with what is an escalating nuclear crisis as they [Iran] move closer and closer to having enough fissile material for a weapon.” One wonders if Sullivan got his start in advertising, because his description is a purposeful mischaracterization of the situation. The descriptor “escalating nuclear crisis” is a woeful exaggeration. If there is any “crisis” at all, it is because Washington has failed to meet its commitments under the 2015 agreement. The Iranians have repeatedly made it clear that they have no interest in nuclear weapons. And, one can imagine the only thing that could change their mind is an existential outside threat. To date, the only ones that pose such threats are allies of the U.S.: Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Then stepped up Tony Blinken, Biden’s new secretary of state, to continue the new administration’s maneuvers. To wit, Blinken stated “Tehran must resume complying with the 2015 Iran nuclear deal before Washington would do so.” This sort of statement is a rather childish, you-go-first challenge. Blinken then explained that if Iran returns to the deal, Washington would seek to build what Blinken called a “longer and stronger agreement” that would deal with other “deeply problematic” issues. He did not name these, but Biden for his part has drawn attention to Iran’s development of ballistic missiles and its support for proxy forces in countries such as Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.

It took the Iranians no time at all to recognize this gambit for what it is, an effort to enlarge restrictions on Iranian military capacity beyond the scope of the original 2015 agreement. Almost immediately, Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, responded that the U.S. position was not practical and will not happen and then added in an op-ed in Foreign Affairs,“once a party leaves an agreement, then that party has no authority demanding others’ compliance to that agreement.”

The Iranians did come back with a more doable proposal to deal with the “who goes first” dilemma. Teheran proposed a timed, mutual U.S. and Iranian return to the original agreement. In an interview with CNN, the Iranian foreign minister said “both countries should synchronize their JCPOA-related moves under the supervision of the European Union”—in other words, achieve the goal with a step-by-step coordinated process. The Biden administration said no to Zarif’s offer, and sane minds, noting the rejection, could hear eerie Trump-like snickering in the surrounding ether. 

Part IV—Conclusion

We have already asked why Trump decided to act in such a malicious manner toward Iran. Now we can ask why Joe Biden has decided to mimic his predecessor and continue a callous, hard-line approach to that same country. As it turns out, the answer is not all that different. Biden is subject to the same lobby pressure from groups to which he has a demonstrated sympathy. Among these are some of the well known suspects mentioned above, but first and foremost are Israel and its Zionist supporters (a rundown of these can be found in a full-page ad in the 5 February 2021 New York Times). 

We can also add one other grouping to this list—various civil rights organizations who would use the moment to pressure Teheran to increase the level of civil liberties allowed in the country. However, as Behrooz Ghamari Tabriz, writing in  Counterpunch notes, “It is a hard sell for those who are genuinely concerned with the question of human rights to ask the American government to be the agent of that change. So long as our government supports the region’s most oppressive regimes, it is hard to imagine that it has any moral authority or political capital to spend on issues of human rights in Iran.”

It is hard to know what exactly is going on inside Joe Biden’s head on this issue. We can assume that it is nothing really analytical. His administration’s actions have, so far, run counter to the other precedents he is laying down in the areas of international cooperation and leadership. They also go against logic. One can imagine no better way to move the Iranians toward nuclear weapons capability than the policies now being pursued. Until Biden acts, in terms of Iran, in the interests of achievable nuclear restraint and stability, that is in the real interests of the country he leads, rather than this or that interest group, he will carry around the residual chains of Donald Trump’s miserable legacy. 

IRANIAN ROCKETS BECOME EVEN MORE POWERFUL AS ISRAEL LACKS OPTIONS TO CONTAIN TEHRAN INFLUENCE

South Front

Despite Israel’s best efforts, Iran’s influence and presence in the Middle East, and in Syria specifically is spreading.

One could blame that on the Biden administration’s halt in the “maximum pressure” campaign, but that influence was increasing even when Donald Trump sat in the White House.

Currently, Iran is furthering its interests and there is little to truly deter it.

On February 1st, Iran carried out its first successful missile launch since Joe Biden became president.

The missile is the Zuljanah, Iran’s newest domestic built satellite-carrying rocket. It is hailed as Tehran’s “most powerful rocket engine” and it can either carry a 220-kilogram satellite, or up to 10 smaller ones.

The Trump Administration, and also Israel have repeatedly accused Iran of using such tests as a way to develop capability for ballistic missiles with a nuclear warhead.

On the very same day, Iran also notified the US that it couldn’t simply rejoin the Nuclear Deal, that the sanctions had to go.

Currently, the Biden Administration appears to be considering its actions, and is not undertaking any further movements to antagonize Tehran.

This stillness is something Israel is discontent with, as it provides Iran and its proxies to operate rather freely.

Tel Aviv is likely feeling a sense of urgency, as even Hezbollah launched an anti-aircraft missile at its drone. That is a rare occurrence.

The Iron Dome was also recently updated and tested out against advanced drones and smaller missiles. That is something both Iran and its proxies are quite adequate at employing.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) arrested a shepherd who cross from Syria into soil occupied by Israel and was apprehended. Threats are all around, and the paranoia is growing.

The concern and need to dig in and protect its own is also apparent in the Juniper Falcon exercise that began on February 4th. It is a join cooperation between the IDF and US European Command.

The drill focuses on improving cooperation, and improving the joint ability to defend from external threats.

Defending both the Israeli and US interests in the Middle East from external threat may become reality sooner, rather than later.

One of the battlegrounds where the US-Israeli bloc feels itself threatened is Syria. On February 4th, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) announced that it had secured the Homs-Deir Ezzor highway. The next operation may take place in the Hama-Aleppo-Raqqa triangle.

The SAA, together with Russian aerial support, and likely some Iranian assistance are making progress.

When ISIS activity goes down, as a result of these operations, Israel will potentially need to be more careful in its raids and activities, because its adversaries may have their hands mostly untied.

Any neutral observer would easily notice that, currently, Iran and the Damascus government are achieving success in their endeavors. And that happens in spite of the actions of ISIS, Israel, Turkey and the US.

Iran to nuclear weapons … a serious option إيران إلى السلاح النوويّ…خيار جدّيّ

**English Machine translation Please scroll down for the Arabic original version **

Iran to nuclear weapons … a serious option

Photo of إيران إلى السلاح النوويّ…
خيار جدّيّ

Nasser Kandil

–In years, as Iran advances nuclear technology and establishes advances in missile technology, even reaching the advanced range, Iran has succeeded in letting America gasp behind, while Iran’s political point of view is neither nuclear nor missile. On the political level, Iran’s nuclear program is a twin, the first is aimed at economic and social progress using nuclear technology in multiple areas, but it has a high strategic value in the Eyes of the United States because of the opportunity to turn into a military nuclear program, and the second to protect progress in the first, Iranian missiles are the shield and fort to protect the nuclear program, by making the thinking of striking this program militarily out of research, especially since the missile program If Iran’s nuclear program is strategically in the eyes of Washington, and Iran’s missile program is a shield against targeting, what is the strategy in Tehran’s eyes?

–During the decades of progress on the nuclear program and subsequently the missile program, Washington has been negotiating and halting negotiations, and discovering when it returns to negotiations that the Iranian program has made qualitatively new progress with which the terms of the negotiations have changed, according to former U.S. President Barack Obama, based on his call not to risk returning pressure and withdrawing from negotiations without signing a possible agreement. Whenever Washington imagined that releasing Iranian funds and lifting sanctions would ensure that Iran would abandon Baghdad, Damascus, Beirut, or abandon Ansar Allah in Yemen, it would discover the opposite, until the Obama administration reached the conviction that it agreed with this strategy and wagered to contain its escalation by engaging in localised settlements in the arenas of engagement that would satisfy the local parties, before the administration of former President Trump reached a bet on returning to pressure in response to Saudi-Israeli commitments to turn the table, to result in the Trump mandate the birth of new conditions for negotiation, what are they?

– President Obama said that he was informed by a trusted mediator with Iran that relying on Imam Ali Khamenei’s fatwa prohibiting the production of nuclear weapons to continue pressure on Iran may lead to changing the fatwa to allow the production of nuclear weapons and limiting their use to defending Iran against a nuclear attack, and what the Iranian Minister of Security said before two days about the possibility of Iran going to produce a nuclear weapon, will be taken very seriously, because when Iran announces a hypothesis, it does not do so in negotiation unless it has acquired all of its components, and the scenario for its implementation becomes available, this is an additional significance of the twinning of the nuclear program with the missile program, to form together a project that obtains strategic value in Tehran’s eyes in this case. U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration is reluctant to quickly return the nuclear deal without amendment and without additional conditions, and to push for the lifting of sanctions.

If the confrontation follows this scenario, to which Tehran seems well prepared, the negotiations, according to Obama, will become more complicated, and no one will be able to talk to Iran with less negotiating offers than linking the end of Iran’s nuclear weapons program to the end of Israel’s military nuclear program. This is the new strategic value that Iran is preparing to achieve, which Washington gives legitimacy whenever it makes way to return to the original agreement, which Iran cannot refuse if America returns to it with the lifting of sanctions, under the heading of the return of the parties to the pre-Trump actions that paved Iran’s path to this stage of power.

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إيران إلى السلاح النوويّ…خيار جدّيّ

Photo of إيران إلى السلاح النوويّ…
خيار جدّيّ

ناصر قنديل

خلال سنوات نجحت إيران، وهي تتقدّم في التكنولوجيا النووية وتؤسس للتقدم في تكنولوجيا الصواريخ، حتى بلغت فيها المدى المتقدم، بأن تدع أميركا تلهث وراءها، بينما وجهة إيران السياسية ليست نووية ولا صاروخية. فعلى الصعيد السياسي يشكل البرنامج النووي والبرنامج الصاروخي لإيران توأمين، الأول هادف للتقدم الاقتصادي والاجتماعي باستخدام التقنية النووية في مجالات متعددة، لكنه صاحب قيمة استراتيجية عالية في العيون الأميركية لما يوفره من فرصة للتحول الى برنامج نووي عسكري، والثاني لحماية التقدم في الأول، فالصواريخ الإيرانيّة هي الدرع والحصن لحماية البرنامج النووي، بجعل التفكير بضرب هذا البرنامج عسكرياً خارج البحث، خصوصاً أن البرنامج الصاروخي الإيراني الذي بلغ مراحل القدرة على إصابة كل المواقع الأميركيّة المنتشرة في دائرة شعاعها 2000 كلم، هو البرنامج ذاته الذي تنتقل تقنياته الى قوى المقاومة والذي يجعل مع الصواريخ الإيرانية أمن كيان الاحتلال والحكومات التابعة لواشنطن في دائرة الخطر، فإذا كان البرنامج النووي الإيراني استراتيجياً بعيون واشنطن، والبرنامج الصاروخي الإيراني درع حمايته من الاستهداف، فما هو الاستراتيجي بعيون طهران؟

خلال عقود التقدم في البرنامج النووي وتالياً البرنامج الصاروخي، كانت واشنطن تفاوض وتوقف التفاوض، وتكتشف عندما تعود للتفاوض ان البرنامج الإيراني حقق تقدماً جديداً نوعياً تغيّرت معه شروط التفاوض، وفقاً لما قاله الرئيس الأميركي السابق باراك أوباما، مستنداً الى ذلك في دعوته لعدم المخاطرة بالعودة للضغوط والانسحاب من التفاوض دون توقيع الاتفاق الممكن. وخلال هذه العقود كان ولا يزال الهم الإيراني الاستراتيجي الأول هو بناء طوق صاروخي متين لقوى المقاومة قادر على حصار كيان الاحتلال. وكلما توهمت واشنطن أن الإفراج عن الأموال الإيرانية ورفع العقوبات سيتكفلان بتخلي إيران عن طريق طهران بغداد دمشق بيروت، أو بالتخلي عن أنصار الله في اليمن، كانت تكتشف العكس، حتى وصلت إدارة أوباما إلى الاقتناع بالتساكن مع هذه الاستراتيجية والرهان على احتواء تصاعدها من خلال الانخراط بتسويات موضعية في ساحات الاشتباك، تحوز رضى الأطراف المحلية، قبل ان تصل إدارة الرئيس السابق دونالد ترامب، الى الرهان على العودة للضغوط تلبية لتعهدات إسرائيلية سعودية بقلب الطاولة، لينتج عن ولاية ترامب ولادة شروط جديدة للتفاوض، فما هي؟

قال الرئيس أوباما إنه تبلغ من وسيط موثوق مع إيران، بأن الاستناد إلى فتوى الإمام علي الخامنئي بتحريم إنتاج سلاح نووي لمواصلة الضغط على إيران قد يؤدي لتغيير الفتوى بالسماح بإنتاج سلاح نووي، وحصر استخدامها بالدفاع عن إيران بوجه هجوم نوويّ، وما قاله وزير الأمن الإيراني قبل يومين عن احتمال ذهاب إيران لإنتاج سلاح نووي، يؤخذ على محمل الجدّ لأن إيران عندما تعلن عن فرضية لا تفعل ذلك تفاوضياً إلا وقد امتلكت كل مقوّماتها، وبات سيناريو تطبيقها متاحاً، وهذا مغزى إضافي لتوأمة البرنامج النووي مع البرنامج الصاروخي، ليشكلا معاً مشروعاً ينال القيمة الاستراتيجي بعيون طهران في هذه الحالة. حالة تردّد إدارة الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن في العودة السريعة للاتفاق النوويّ من دون تعديل ومن دون شروط إضافية، والمبادرة الى رفع العقوبات.

في حال سلكت المواجهة هذا السيناريو، الذي تبدو طهران قد أعدّت له جيداً، يصير التفاوض وفقاً لما قاله اوباما، أشد تعقيداً فلن يكون متاحاً لأحد عندها الحديث مع إيران بعروض تفاوضيّة أقل من ربط إنهاء البرنامج العسكريّ النوويّ الإيراني إلا بالتزامن مع إنهاء البرنامج النوويّ العسكري الإسرائيليّ. وهذه هي القيمة الاستراتيجية الجديدة، التي تستعدّ لتحقيقها إيران، والتي تمنحها واشنطن المشروعيّة كلما عقدت سبل العودة للاتفاق الأصلي، الذي لا تملك إيران أن ترفضه إذا عادت إليه أميركا مرفقاً برفع العقوبات، تحت عنوان عودة الطرفين الى ما قبل إجراءات ترامب التي مهدت لإيران طريق بلوغ هذه المرحلة من الاقتدار

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Imam Khamenei: Iran will Reverse Nuclear Steps only if US Lifts Sanctions First

Imam Khamenei: Iran will Reverse Nuclear Steps only if US Lifts Sanctions First

By Staff, Agencies

The Leader of the Islamic Revolution His Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei confirmed that Iran will retrace its nuclear countermeasures once the United States lifts its sanctions in a manner that could be verifiable by Tehran.

“Iran will return to its JCOPA obligations once the US fully lifts its sanctions in action and not in words or on paper, and once the sanction relief is verified by Iran,” Imam Khamenei announced, referring by abbreviation to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the official name of the landmark nuclear agreement that Iran signed with the P5+1 group of states – the US, the UK, France, Russia, and China plus Germany – in Vienna in 2015.

His Eminence made the remarks in Tehran on Sunday during a meeting with commanders, pilots, and staff members of the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force [IRIAF].

Under his signature “maximum pressure” policy against Iran, former US president Donald Trump withdrew Washington from the JCPOA and restored the economic sanctions that the deal had removed.

In his Sunday’s remarks, the Leader said it was the “definitive and irreversible” policy of the Islamic Republic that the United States ought to first fully eliminate the sanctions before Iran could reverse its retaliatory measures.

Trump’s successor, Joe Biden, has signaled a willingness to rejoin the JCPOA, which was inked when he was vice president. However, his foreign policy team has said Iran should take the first step by coming back into “full compliance” with the deal, a condition Tehran says is unacceptable.

“The Americans and the Europeans have no right to set any conditions [of their own] as they violated their JCPOA commitments,” Imam Khamenei stated, adding that Iran would pay no heed to the “idle talk” of some “undeserving” American and European officials in this regard.

He further added: “They initially put some of the sanctions in abeyance for a brief period, but then re-imposed and even intensified them,” in reference to Washington and its allies’ initial limited compliance with the JCPOA. “Therefore, they have no right to come up with any conditions,” the Leader reiterated.

Imam Khamenei pointed to Washington’s past failures to hurt Iran’s Islamic establishment as one of its numerous miscalculations concerning the country.

The Leader particularly recalled Trump’s national security advisor John Bolton’s failed prediction that Washington would successfully enable a “regime change” in Iran by early 2019.

“One of those very first-class idiots had said two years ago that they would be celebrating the New Year in Tehran in January 2019,” Imam Khamenei noted.

“Now, that person has entered the dustbin of history and his boss [Trump] has been kicked out of the White House in a humiliating manner. By God’s grace, though, the Islamic Republic still stands tall,” the Leader noted.

In parallel, Imam Khamenei named the US support for the riots that broke out in Iran in 2009 as another instance of Washington’s miscalculations in its efforts to bring about the collapse of the Islamic Republic.

Washington’s excessive trust in the Pahlavi regime’s military, the Leader said, was yet another calculation that was proven wrong when the air force personnel turned their backs on the US-backed regime.

His Eminence described the officers deserting the army and joining the masses of revolutionary people as a “miracle-like” development that hugely contributed to the Revolution’s victory.

Meanwhile, Imam Khamenei also pointed to Trump’s chaotic final days in the White House, which culminated in the invasion of the Capitol Hill by his extremist supporters.

The Leader said the incidents were not to be underplayed and judged only in light of the twilight of an American president. Rather, those developments in fact marked “the twilight of America’s reputation, power, and social integrity,” he noted.

He advised the Iranian officials to always beware of the enemy and its error-riddled calculations and “constantly increase the constituents of national power.”

He hailed the recent back-to-back military exercises featuring the Army and Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards [IRG] as attempts by “the children of this country to boost national security,” calling the maneuvers “a cause for pride.”

Imam Khamenei, meanwhile, denounced certain regional states for relying on extra-regional sources for their own security, noting that those very same foreign powers would desert them when their assistance is required.

The Leader cited the likes of Iran’s monarch including Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak or Tunisia’s Zine El Abidine Ben Ali as examples of regional rulers who mistakenly placed their trust in foreign powers.

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Photo of إيران تستعدّ لعمل كبير

مع بداية التزام الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن بالعودة للاتفاق النووي مع إيران، حمل خطاب بايدن كل الموروث المرافق لمرحلة سلفه الرئيس السابق دونالد ترامب، موزعاً على نوعين من العقد، فتحدث في العنوان الأول عن حتميّة العودة للاتفاق النووي مع إيران مضيفاً ثلاثة شروط، الأول البحث بمستقبل ما بعد نهاية مدة الاتفاق بعد خمس سنوات، والثاني الصواريخ البالستية الإيرانية، والثالث الأوضاع الإقليمية وما يُسمّى بالنفوذ الإيراني فيها، وفي العنوان الثاني ربط بايدن العودة الأميركية للاتفاق بالعودة الإيرانية لشروط الاتفاق أولاً ومن ثم التحقق من هذه العودة وعندها ستفعل واشنطن المثل، ودائماً كان بايدن وأركانه يتحدّثون عن إنجاز كل ذلك بالشراكة مع الحلفاء.

يعرف بادين أن الشروط التي وضعها تعني أن لا عودة الى الاتفاق، فبعض هذه العناوين كانت مطروحة على إيران كشرط لتوقيع الاتفاق عام 2015، ولاقت صداً ورفضاً إيرانيين وكانت النتيجة تخطيها وتوقيع الاتفاق، كملف الصواريخ وشراكة الحلفاء في التفاوض، وخصوصاً «إسرائيل» والسعودية، أما ما يسمّيه الأميركيون رسمياً بالنفوذ الإيراني الإقليمي، فهم في التفاصيل يتحدثون عن ملف عراقي وملف سوري وملف لبناني وملف يمني كل بصورة منفصلة ويطرحون خلاصات ومواقف بعضها يسلّم بالقراءة الإيرانية وبالفشل الأميركي للسياسات المعتمدة، وها هم يبدأون بمقاربة الملف اليمني بلغة وقف السعودية والإمارات للحرب ويمنعون عنهما السلاح، ويتحدّث رموزهم عن الحاجة لمقاربة جديدة لسورية.

خلال اليومين الأخيرين وجد الأميركيون مخرجاً من هذا المأزق عبر تصعيد اللهجة عن خطورة امتلاك إيران مقدرات إنتاج سلاح نوويّ خلال أسابيع. وقد كرّر هذا التحذير وزير الخارجية توني بلينكن ومستشار الأمن القومي جيك سوليفان، للوصول الى صيغة معلنة تتحدّث عن اتفاقين ومرحلتين، اتفاق أصلي قائم يجب العودة اليه ثنائياً من واشنطن وطهران، واتفاق ثانٍ يصفونه بالأعمق والأقوى والأمتن يضمّ باقي العناوين، أي شراكة الحلفاء وملف الصواريخ ومدة الاتفاق على طريقة الترحيل أفضل سبل التعطيل، فيصير الأخذ بهذه النقاط مشروطاً بقبول إيران بدلاً من أن يكون قبول العودة للاتفاق مع إيران مشروطاً بقبولها بهذه النقاط، والعذر أكثر من كافٍ، الوقت لا يسمح بالمناورة ويجب الإسراع بالحؤول دون بلوغ إيران مرحلة الخطر التي حدّدها بلينكن وسوليفان بأسابيع.

يبقى العنوان الثاني وهو آليّة العودة، ونظرية أنت أولاً، التي تحدّث عنها روبرت مالي قبل أن يصير مبعوثاً خاصاً للملف الإيراني. وهي هنا مهمته لتذليل تعقيداتها وفقاً لما وصفه ببناء الثقة، التي يعترف بأن فقدانها من طرف إيران بعد الانسحاب الأميركي من الاتفاق مشروع، ويقوم مقترح مالي وفقاً لما يقرأ بين سطور حواره مع مجلة لوبوان الفرنسيّة قبل تعيينه مبعوثاً خاصاً، على الخطوة خطوة، أيّ الاتفاق الضمني على جدول طلبات متبادلة، تتم تلبيتها بالتتابع والتزامن والتوازي ضمن مهلة زمنية يتفق عليها، كصعود السلم ونزوله للتلاقي في منطقة وسط، ويبدو الطلب الأميركي على لسان بلينكين أمس، بالإفراج عن معتقلين أميركيين في إيران، بينما يبدو من الجانب الإيراني، الإفراج عن أموال إيرانية مجمّدة في مصارف خارج أميركا بفعل العقوبات الأميركية، والإفراج عن مشتريات إيرانية خاصة بمواجهة وباء كورونا، ويمكن أن تكون الخطوات الخاصة باليمن بعضاً من خطوات التدرج نحو العودة إلى الاتفاق، الذي يدخل مرحلة حرجة في شهر آذار المقبل، حيث تنتهي المهلة المعلنة من إيران بتصعيد درجة تخصيب اليورانيوم، ويحل موعد الاجتماع المقرّر للجنة وزارية للموقعين على الاتفاق الذي ستحضره إيران ويترك الباب مفتوحاً لنضج ظروف حضوره من الجانب الأميركي، ليعلن من هناك إطار العودة المتزامنة.

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المأزق الأميركي الداخلي استعصاء بين الخيارات – الحلقة 2 من برنامج ستون دقيقة مع ناصر قنديل
انحلال الامبراطورية الاميركية – 1 – فوز بايدن لا يلغي خيار الحرب الاهلية – العودة للتفاهم النووي
التطورات اللبنانية والإقليمية مع ناصر قنديل رئيس تحرير جريدة البناء

مقالات ذات صلة

Problems of the new US foreign policy (3) إشكاليات السياسة الخارجية الأميركية الجديدة (3)

Problems of the new US foreign policy

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Researcher, political economist and former Secretary-General of the Arab National Congress

Ziad Hafz

Part 3:  Relationship File With the Islamic Republic of Iran

The cornerstone of the Biden administration’s foreign policy in the Middle East is the Iranian nuclear file. President Biden’s remarks during the campaign indicate a desire to return to the agreement.  But Iran’s nuclear file is becoming more and more complicated. President Biden’s remarks about a return to the Iran deal mean nothing if the lifting of sanctions, at least those imposed in the Obama administration,does not go hand in hand.  But the question is, can the president-elect lift sanctions? The positions in favour of the Zionist entity of the U.S. president and his Zionist foreign policy team make it easier to imagine any leniency with the Islamic Republic that does not go beyond verbal retreat without any consequences in terms of sanctions, said Director of National Intelligence Avril Heinz.

In this context, there are two types of sanctions:  the sanctions that were imposed before the agreement and the sanctions imposed by the Trump administration. It should be noted that the sanctions imposed before the agreement were not lifted by the Obama administration after the agreement was signed.  All I did was free up some frozen money. This situation would not have bothered the Islamic Republic much because the agreement opened the door to dealing with the countries that boycotted it in the earlier stages.  Trump’s sanctions were also sanctions against anyone who deals with the Islamic Republic. Here, too, will be the conflict between desires and capabilities and the result will be resolved by the balance of power that is no longer in favour of the United States.  What can be expected is a softening of the tone of the speech among Americans, but without concrete steps accompanying it. The most we can expect is for the U.S. administration to turn a blind eye to parties that cannot comply with U.S. embargoes and include a list of broad exceptions.  What could lead to the lifting of sanctions is the recognition (within the new administration) of defeat in the conflict with the Islamic Republic of Iran, but this is unlikely at this stage and possibly the next. The power of the«left» in the components of the U.S. administration is not dragged into external files except in decisions of military confrontation.  

But some points must be mentioned on the nuclear issue. During Barack Obama’s tenure, the concern was to negotiate with the Republic on a number of political issues, including the nuclear issue.  But the Iranian leadership has refused to link the political files to the nuclear file, insisting on its right to enrich like other countries in the world. The U.S. administration believed at the time that reaching an understanding with the Islamic Republic could strengthen Iran’s”reformists” who are open to interaction with the West.   According to many studies, the United States was not obsessed with Iran’s possession of the nuclear bomb, but was only  an argument for opening channels of dialogue with the Islamic Republic on the issues of interest to the United States, primarily the security of the Zionist entity, which is totally contrary to the political doctrine of the Islamic Republic.  The “achievement” of the nuclear agreement was an acknowledgement of the failure of the efforts of the United States, the West and the Zionist entity to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear knowledge and by preventing it from enriching the high level it is entitled to in accordance with international treaties. It was also a recognition of the failure of the United States to impose its agenda on the Islamic Republic, and it was content to negotiate the nuclear issue.  The agreement also de-isolates Iran and opens the door to international interaction with it with the lifting of UN sanctions. But the deal did not lift U.S. sanctions on Iran, which lasted until the end of Obama’s term.

Trump has restored isolation to Iran as well as new sanctions in order to stifle Iran’s economy. But the Islamic Republic’s response was to stick to the comprehensive agreement on the nuclear issue, but with the restoration of its right to enrich at high rates.  The Obama administration would not have been able to achieve by shortening the default time for a nuclear bomb if Iran wanted to. The question becomes:  Will the Biden administration accept a return to the pre-Trump situation? National Security Adviser Gal Sullivan went further and talked about lifting sanctions if Iran complies with its commitments.  If so, it is no problem, but in our opinion things are not that simple. The administration’s concern remains to approach Iran’s role in the region to ensure the security of the Zionist entity and not for another purpose.  Until now, there is no evidence to solve this potentially intractable problem.

The options for the new administration are limited, not a military confrontation, but perhaps progressive and escalating security tensions without a major open confrontation and no political settlement unless we go back to pre-Trump. No matter what, the Islamic Republic has strategically defeated the United States, but it has not enjoyed victory, and the new administration will continue to prevent it from winning.  What contributes to victory is two things: the Ability of the United States to overcome the worsening of benefits at home and the position of other countries such as the European Union and other countries in overcoming Trump sanctions. In the first part, we believe that deep internal divisions, even within the ruling party, will prevent the possibility of continuing aggressive policies.  EU countries will be more eager to benefit from trade contracts with the Islamic Republic of Iran in the face of economic downturn or even recession that threatens the United States. European interests in the United States will be affected by deflation/recession, forcing the EU to open up new horizons outside the United States.

As for other files such as the Iranian ballistic file and the expansion of influence, the new administration cannot offer anything yet. On the other hand, what the Islamic Republic can offer is a”waiver” of its right to enrichment as stipulated in international agreements and the conditions attached to it, but this will only be done if the sanctions are lifted altogether.  Therefore, we believe that the«settlement»  will not go beyond the stage of linking a conflict with the Islamic Republic of Iran.  Among the conditions of linking the dispute can turn a blind eye to the implementation of sanctions or allow«exceptions» to give some vitality to the new situation.  But the most important question is the usefulness of these sanctions against the Islamic Republic.  In our view, experience has shown that sanctions can be painful, but without any effectiveness in achieving their goals. Sanctions are types of war crimes and in the future the United States will be held accountable for crimes.

(3) إشكاليات السياسة الخارجية الأميركية الجديدة زياد حافظ

باحث وكاتب اقتصادي سياسي والأمين العام السابق للمؤتمر القومي العربي

زياد حافظ

الجزء الثالث: ملف العلاقة مع الجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران

حجر الزاوية للسياسة الخارجية الأميركية لإدارة بايدن في منطقة الشرق الأوسط هو الملف النووي الإيراني. تصريحات الرئيس بايدن خلال الحملة الانتخابية تشير إلى رغبة في العودة إلى الاتفاق. لكن الملف النووي الإيراني يزداد تعقيداً يوماً بعد يوم. فتصريحات الرئيس بايدن حول العودة إلى الاتفاقية مع إيران لا تعني شيئاً إنْ لم يواكبها رفع العقوبات على الأقلّ تلك التي كانت مفروضة في إدارة أوباما. لكن السؤال هل بمقدور الرئيس المنتخب رفع العقوبات؟ سؤال ليس من السهل الإجابة عليه لأنّ ضغط الكيان الصهيوني لن يتوقّف ولأنّ الكونغرس الأميركي مزاجه معاد لإيران. كما أنّ المواقف المؤيّدة للكيان الصهيوني عند الرئيس الأميركي وفريق سياسته الخارجية الصهيوني تجعل تصوّر أيّ تساهل مع الجمهورية الإسلامية لا يتجاوز التراجع اللفظي دون أيّ مردود على صعيد العقوبات أمر بعيد المنال كما صرّحت مديرة الاستخبارات الوطنية افريل هاينز.

في هذا السياق هناك نوعان من العقوبات: العقوبات التي كانت مفروضة قبل الاتفاق والعقوبات التي فرضتها إدارة ترامب. نلفت النظر إلى أنّ العقوبات التي كانت مفروضة قبل الاتفاق لم ترفعها إدارة أوباما بعد التوقيع على الاتفاق. كلّ ما فعلته هو تحرير بعض الأموال المجمّدة. هذه الحالة لم تكن لتزعج كثيراً الجمهورية الإسلامية لأنّ الاتفاق فتح باب التعامل مع الدول التي قاطعتها في المراحل السابقة. أما عقوبات ترامب فكانت عقوبات أيضاً بحق كلّ من يتعامل مع الجمهورية الإسلامية. هنا أيضاً سيكون الصراع بين الرغبات والقدرات والنتيجة تحسمها موازين القوّة التي لم تعد لصالح الولايات المتحدة. ما يمكن توقّعه هو تخفيف لهجة المخاطبة عند الأميركيين ولكن دون أن يرافق ذلك خطوات ملموسة. أقصى ما يمكن أن نتوقّعه هو أن تغضّ النظر الإدارة الأميركية عن الأطراف التي لا تستطيع الالتزام بقرارات الحظر الأميركي وإدراج لائحة من الاستثناءات الواسعة. ما يمكن أن يؤدّي إلى رفع العقوبات هو الاعتراف (داخل الإدارة الجديدة) بالهزيمة في الصراع مع الجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران ولكن هذا أمر مستبعد في المرحلة الراهنة وربما المقبلة. قوّة «اليسار» في مكوّنات الإدارة الأميركية لا تنجر إلى الملفّات الخارجية إلاّ في قرارات المواجهة العسكرية.

لكن لا بدّ من التذكير ببعض النقاط في موضوع الملف النووي. فخلال ولايتي باراك أوباما كان الهاجس هو التفاوض مع الجمهورية حول عدد من القضايا السياسية منها الملف النووي. لكن القيادة الإيرانية رفضت ربط الملفات السياسية بالملف النووي متمسكّة بحقها بالتخصيب كسائر الدول في العالم. اعتقدت الإدارة الأميركية آنذاك أنّ الوصول إلى تفاهم مع الجمهورية الإسلامية قد يقوّى يد «الإصلاحيين» في إيران المنفتحين على التفاعل مع الغرب. وفقاً لدراسات عديدة لم يكن هاجس الولايات المتحدة امتلاك إيران للقنبلة النووية بل كانت فقط «حجّة» لفتح قنوات الحوار مع الجمهورية الإسلامية حول الملفّات التي تهمّ الولايات المتحدة وفي مقدّمتها أمن الكيان الصهيوني الذي يتعارض كلّياً مع العقيدة السياسية في الجمهورية الإسلامية. كان «إنجاز» الاتفاق النووي إقراراً بفشل جهود الولايات المتحدة والغرب والكيان الصهيوني بمنع إيران من امتلاك المعرفة النووية وبمنعها من التخصيب بالنسبة المرتفعة التي يحق لها وفقاً للمعاهدات الدولية. كما كان إقراراً بفشل الولايات المتحدة على فرض أجندتها على الجمهورية الإسلامية فاكتفت بالتفاوض بالملف النووي. كما أنّ الاتفاق فكّ العزلة عن إيران وفتح باب التفاعل الدولي معها مع رفع العقوبات الأممية المفروضة عليها. لكن لم يؤدّ الاتفاق إلى رفع العقوبات الأميركية على إيران والتي استمرّت حتى نهاية ولاية أوباما.

ترامب أعاد العزلة إلى إيران إضافة إلى عقوبات جديدة بغية خنق الاقتصاد الإيراني. لكن ردّ الجمهورية الإسلامية كان تمسّكها بالاتفاق الشامل حول الملفّ النووي ولكن مع استعادة حقّها بالتخصيب بالنسب المرتفعة. فما كانت تخشاه إدارة أوباما قد تحقّق عبر تقصير المدة الزمنية الافتراضية لتملك قنبلة نووية إذا ما أرادت إيران ذلك. ويصبح السؤال هنا: هل ستقبل إدارة بايدن العودة إلى ما كان عليه الوضع قبل ترامب؟ التصريحات الأولية لعدد من المسؤولين بدءاً من الرئيس إلى وزير خارجيته توحي بـ نعم. مستشار الأمن القومي جال سوليفان ذهب أبعد من ذلك وتكلّم عن رفع العقوبات إذا ما التزمت إيران بتعهّداتها. إذا كان الأمر كذلك فلا مشكلة ولكن الأمور في رأينا ليست بتلك البساطة. فما زال هاجس الإدارة مقاربة الدور الإيراني في المنطقة لضمان أمن الكيان الصهيوني وليس لغرض آخر. حتى الساعة ليس هناك من دليل حول حلّ تلك الإشكالية التي قد تكون استعصاء.

الخيارات المتاحة أمام الإدارة الجديدة محدودة فلا مواجهة عسكرية بل ربما توترات أمنية متدرّجة ومتصاعدة دون الوصول إلى مواجهة مفتوحة كبيرة ولا تسوية سياسية إلاّ بالرجوع إلى ما قبل ترامب. ومهما نظرنا إلى الأمور فإنّ الجمهورية الإسلامية هزمت الولايات المتحدة بشكل استراتيجي لكنها لم تنعم بالنصر وستستمر الإدارة الجديدة بمنعها من النصر. ما يساهم في التنعّم بالنصر أمران: قدرة الولايات المتحدة على تجاوز تفاقم الاستحقاقات في الداخل الأميركي وموقف الدول الأخرى كالاتحاد الأوروبي وسائر الدول في تجاوزهم للعقوبات الترمبية. في الشقّ الأول نعتقد أنّ الانقسامات الحادة الداخلية وحتى داخل الحزب الحاكم ستحول من إمكانية الاستمرار في سياسات عدوانية. أما دول الاتحاد الأوروبي ستكون أكثر حرصاً على الاستفادة من عقود تجارية مع الجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران في ظلّ الانكماش الاقتصادي أو حتى الكساد الذي يهدّد الولايات المتحدة. فالمصالح الأوروبية في الولايات المتحدة ستتأثر من جرّاء الانكماش/ الكساد ما يفرض على الاتحاد الاوروبي فتح آفاق جديدة خارج الولايات المتحدة.

أما في ما يتعلّق بالملفّات الأخرى كالملف الباليستي الإيراني والتمدّد بالنفوذ فليس بمقدور الإدارة الجديدة تقديم أيّ شيء حتى الساعة. في المقابل ما يمكن أن تقدّمه الجمهورية الإسلامية هو «تنازل» عن حقّها في التخصيب كما تنصّ عليه الاتفاقات الدولية والشروط المرفقة بها، ولكن لن يتمّ ذلك إلاّ إذا ما تمّ رفع العقوبات كلّياً. لذلك نرى أنّ «التسوية» لن تتجاوز مرحلة ربط نزاع مع الجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران. يمكن من ضمن شروط ربط النزاع غضّ النظر عن تنفيذ العقوبات أو السماح بـ «استثناءات» تعطي بعض الحيوية للحالة الجديدة. لكن السؤال الأكثر أهمية هو حول جدوى تلك العقوبات المفروضة على الجمهورية الإسلامية. في رأينا برهنت التجربة أنّ العقوبات قد تكون مؤلمة ولكن دون أيّ فعّالية في تحقيق أهدافها. فالعقوبات هي أنواع من جرائم الحرب وفي مستقبل قد لا يكون بعيداً ستتمّ مساءلة الولايات المتحدة على الجرائم.

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A fake carrot to Iran

Source

January 30, 2021 – 20:58

TEHRAN – Joe Biden’s selection of Rob Malley as Iran envoy has sparked bitter dispute between hawks and progressives. They have launched media campaigns defending or opposing his selection. Hawks accuse him of going soft on Iran while progressives underline that the appointment of Malley will rekindle diplomacy with Iran.

But both groups fail to recognize that Malley is no friend of Iran and will work to secure the interests of the United States at the end of the day.

The first wave of criticism against the appointment of Malley came from a vague group called the National Union for Democracy in Iran (NUFDI) which sent an open letter to then-Secretary of State nominee Antony Blinken, urging him not to appoint Malley to the position of special envoy on Iran.

The group claimed that Malley was not interested in pursuing dialogue or consultation with what it called “Iranian human rights activists.”

“Mr. Malley’s record outside of government concerns us further. As head of the International Crisis Group, he has singularly focused on cultivating close relationships with Iranian government officials,” the group claimed.

Opposition to the appointment of Malley, the chief Middle East adviser in President Barack Obama’s second term and current president of the International Crisis Group, originates in his past positions on engaging Iran even though he will almost certainly act differently as a government official. In fact, being a government official is a whole lot different than being head of a non-governmental think tank, something that opponents of Malley failed to grasp.

On the other hand, progressives joined forces to defend the appointment of Malley as if he had a magical charm to put an end to U.S. malign behavior toward Iran. On Thursday, a group of these progressives put out a statement firmly defending the selection of Malley.

“Those who accuse Malley of sympathy for the Islamic Republic have no grasp of –or no interest in –true diplomacy, which requires a level-headed understanding of the other side’s motivations and knowledge that can only be acquired through dialogue,” the statement said.

The statement portrayed Malley as a man who will rekindle diplomacy with foes, identify possible areas of agreement and resolution, and, abracadabra, de-escalate tensions between Tehran and Washington as if nothing happened under Trump.

“Rob Malley is an extremely knowledgeable expert with great experience in promoting U.S. security through diplomacy rather than war. He would be an excellent choice for the role of Iran envoy,” Senator Bernie Sanders said in a tweet after Jewish Insider reported that Malley was under consideration to be the Biden administration’s envoy on Iran.

Opponents and proponents of Malley have one thing in common: both of them believe that he will facilitate talks between the governments of the U.S. and Iran. Progressives even sought to suggest that the appointment of Malley was an early carrot to Iran, implying that Iran should be grateful for that.

But this is exactly where opponents and proponents of Malley get it wrong. Judging by the Biden administration’s remarks on Iran, Malley will make it even more difficult for Iran to reach understanding with the U.S. in any future talks.

Biden officials have now made it clear that they want to expand the 2015 Iran nuclear deal – officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) -, not just simply rejoin it. And this will make any kind of negotiations between Iran and the U.S. harder than in 2015, when the two reached the JCPOA while Malley was a member of the U.S. negotiating team.

Imagine if Iran says no to a Malley demand on its missile program or regional activities in any future talks. The Biden administration would tell the whole world that it’s Iran, not the U.S., that doesn’t want to return to diplomacy.

Malley will not make decisions on Iran. Instead, he will largely be responsible for coordinating and implementing the White House Iran policy just like any other diplomat in the State Department. He will likely be a smokescreen for the Biden administration’s soft bullying against Iran. In this sense, Malley would be far from being a driving force for renewed diplomacy with Iran. He is by no means a carrot to Iran, not even a fake one.

PA/PA

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Video: Israeli Military Asks $1.2 Billion to Prepare for Strike on Iran

By South Front

Global Research, January 29, 2021

South Front 28 January 2021

All Global Research articles including the E-Book can be read in 27 languages by activating the “Translate Website” drop down menu on the top banner of our home page (Desktop version).

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The Israeli military needs over $1 billion to fund its widely promoted strike on Iran, which Tel Aviv has threatened to carry out if the US should rejoin the nuclear deal. According to Israeli sources, the military would need these additional funds to deal with the challenges that it faces including ‘threats’ from the Iranian-led Axis of Resistance.

The interesting fact is that even the IDF Chief of Staff admits that Israel is the initiator of the escalation. However, the Israeli leadership continues to insist that the Iranian threat is growing.

“In general, none of [our enemies] want to initiate anything against us. All of their actions — almost without exception — are retaliatory to our actions, not actions that they’ve initiated. And when they decide to carry out [an attack], they experience difficulties and decide to abandon their ways of acting,” IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi said adding that military spending must be increased, despite the coronavirus crisis.

“The missiles don’t get sick, but they can be fired the moment the other side decides that’s what it wants to do,” Kohavi stated referring to the missile arsenal of Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran.

It is interesting to know: Would the new US administration fund Israeli preparations for a strike against Iran beforehand or it would prefer to compensate it after the event.Israeli Officials Consider Attacking Iran, Believing Trump Won’t Oppose It

In any case, as of now there are no conditions to test Israeli readiness to really attack Tehran. Whether the Biden administration will rejoin the nuclear deal is still in question. Iran argues that it would reject any preconditions and the deal could only be considered to be restored after the lifting of all the imposed sanctions.

Meanwhile, the main side suffering are the Gulf allies of the Israeli-US bloc. The new Iranian-backed group, which claimed responsibility for the recent attack on the Saudi capital, issued a threat to the United Arab Emirates. On January 27, the Righteous Promise Brigades released a poster showing a drone attacking Burj Khalifa in the Emirate of Dubai. Rising to 829.8 meters in height, Burj Khalifa is the world’s tallest structure and building.

“The second blow will be on the dens of evil in Dubai, with the help of the Almighty, if the crimes of Bin Salman and Bin Zayed are repeated,” the statement reads. The RPB said its attack on Riyadh was a response to the January 21 bombings in the Iraqi capital. ISIS claimed responsibility for the terrorist attack. However, the Righteous Promise Brigades blamed Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

“The second blow will be on the dens of evil in Dubai, with the help of the Almighty, if the crimes of Bin Salman and Bin Zayed are repeated,” the statement reads. The RPB said its attack on Riyadh was a response to the January 21 bombings in the Iraqi capital. ISIS claimed responsibility for the terrorist attack. However, the Righteous Promise Brigades blamed Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

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The Globalization of War: America’s “Long War” against Humanity

Michel Chossudovsky

The “globalization of war” is a hegemonic project. Major military and covert intelligence operations are being undertaken simultaneously in the Middle East, Eastern Europe, sub-Saharan Africa, Central Asia and the Far East. The U.S. military agenda combines both major theater operations as well as covert actions geared towards destabilizing sovereign states.ISBN Number: 978-0-9737147-6-0Year: 2015Pages: 240 Pages

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ملامح السياسة الخارجيّة لإدارة بايدن

ناصر قنديل

إذا كان جو بايدن قد رفض الموافقة على حرب الخليج الأولى في زمن انهيار الاتحاد السوفياتيّ وذروة الشعور الأميركي بالقوة في عهد الرئيس جورج بوش الأب، ورفض الموافقة على حرب الخليج الثانية في ذروة الاندفاعة الأميركية في الشرق الأوسط مع حروب جورج بوش الإبن، بمثل ما عارض التدخل في ليبيا في ذروة المناخ الذي وضع التدخل في دائرة الدفاع عن حقوق الإنسان الذي أثاره الربيع العربي والتغطية التي وفرتها الجامعة العربية، فمن الطبيعي عدم توقع أن يتبنى بايدن لغة الحرب، في ظروف التراجع والضعف والانقسام والعزلة التي تحكم الحركة الأميركية، إلا بتوافر شروط مشابهة لحرب البلقان التي انتهت بزوال يوغوسلافيا الموحّدة عن الخريطة الأوروبية، والتي كانت الحرب الوحيدة التي أيّدها بايدن. وهذا الفارق بين بايدن وسواه لا يجوز أن تتم مقاربته من خلال اعتبار رؤساء الحرب أسوأ، ورؤساء المنهج الدبلوماسي أقل سوءاً، بل من خلال تفاوت المدارس الأميركية في مقاربة كيفية الفوز بمشروع الهيمنة، وهنا يستطيع بايدن الادعاء انه الأكثر من زملائه في الرئاسة، جمهوريين وديمقراطيين، خبرة في السياسة الخارجية وحدود القوة المنفردة في صناعتها، وفعالية الدبلوماسية في تحقيق الأفضل منها بأقل الخسائر والأكلاف، خصوصاً أن الفشل كان رفيقاً ملازماً لمنهج الحروب.

في ظل وضع داخلي شديد القسوة وتورط بأزمات دولية كبرى، تحتاج ادارة بايدن لترسيم أولويات السياسة الخارجية التي تتيح لها، منح الوضع الداخلي الاهتمام الرئيسي، والأولويات تقع ضمن ترسيخ المفهوم الذي يشكل أصل عقيدة بايدن في رسم السياسة الخارجية، ومضمونها أن السباق والتنافس والتحدّي، عناوين يمكن توفير فرص أفضل لخوضها من ضمن الانخراط في التفاهمات من توهّم خوضها عبر القطيعة والعدائية. وهذا مضمون وجوهر ما كتبه في مقالته التي نشرها في شهر آذار 2020 في مجلة الفورين أفيرز، وعنوان هذا المنهج الذي يتبنّاه بايدن هو اتهام دعاة التفرّد الأميركي بلغة القوة والعقوبات والعدائيّة، بجهل أهمية الدبلوماسية في تشكيل موازين القوى، ويسمّي انصار بايدن هذه العقيدة بإعادة الخصوم الى العلبة، اي علبة الاتفاقيات والتفاهمات، التي تعيد حشد الحلفاء في جبهة واحدة، خصوصاً ضمان وحدة الموقف الاميركي والأوروبي وتوفير فرص إحراج روسيا والصين لضمان إجماع دولي عبر الأمم المتحدة، والتحكم بمراقبة الخصوم وإرهاقهم بطلبات التقيد بالضوابط، وملاحقتهم في كل محاولة للخروج من العلبة. فالسباق والتنافس والتحدي، يتجسد سباق تسلح مع روسيا وتنافساً اقتصادياً مع الصين وتحدياً نووياً مع إيران. والحصيلة ان إيران اقرب لربح التحدي النووي إذا خرجت من العلبة وهي الاتفاق النووي. وروسيا أقرب لبلوغ تحديات عسكرية نوعية إذا خرجت من العلبة وهي اتفاقية ستارت، والصين أقرب لرسم سقوف تنافس قياسية اذا بقيت خارج العلبة وهي التطبيق الصارم لاتفاقية المناخ التي ترفع أكلاف الإنتاج وتقيد نسب النمو، وتفرض ضوابط على استهلاك الطاقة.

حدّد دانيال ر. ديبتريس الكاتب في “أولويات الدفاع” وكاتب العمود في “نيوزويك” 4 قضايا وصفها بأنها ذات أولوية في السياسة الخارجية الأميركية، ويجب على إدارة الرئيس جو بايدن إنجازها خلال 100 يوم الأولى من ولايته. وفصّل ديبتريس في مقال له في موقع «ناشونال إنترست» الأميركي في هذه القضايا قائلاً إنها تتضمن أولوية العودة لاتفاقية وقف سباق التسلح مع روسيا واتفاقية باريس للمناخ، والتهدئة مع إيران، والخروج من اليمن، وجدولة الانسحاب من افغانستان.

سيشكل ملف اليمن نقطة الانطلاق التي تمهد لرسم السياسة الأميركية في المنطقة، حيث بات محسوماً عزم بايدن على إلغاء تصنيف انصار الله على لائحة الإرهاب، رغم الاعتراض السعودي، وليس خافياً اللوم الأميركي على السعودية في استمرار الحرب في كل تصريحات فريق بايدن وفي طليعتهم وزير خارجيته طوني بلينكن ومستشاره للأمن القومي جايك سوليفان ومدير المخابرات وليم بيرينز، ودعوة السعودية للخروج العاجل من هذه الحرب، وبمثل ما سيشكل هذا التحرك الأميركي على جبهة اليمن رأس جسر لإعادة الثقة مع إيران، يمثل التمسك الذي يبديه بايدن وفريقه بموقع متميز للأكراد سبباً لتجاذب سيحكم المشهد الإقليمي في سورية والعراق ومع تركيا وإيران.

يخوض روبرت مالي المرشح الأبرز لتولي الملف الإيراني في فريق بايدن والصديق المقرب لتوني بلينكن في تفاصيل العودة للاتفاق النووي، مستعرضاً قضية مَن يعود أولاً، وقضية رفع العقوبات وطلب إيران للتعويضات، ووهم الحديث عن عزلة دولية تعيشها ايران، ليصل الى حتمية انطلاق ديناميكيّة دبلوماسية تنتهي بالعودة للاتفاق النووي والغاء العقوبات.

يعتقد بعض الخبراء الذين ينطلقون من عقيدة بايدن للانخراط الدبلوماسي بديلاً للتفرد والقوة والعقوبات، ان بايدن سيرسم ثوابت عامة لمقاربته لحل القضية الفلسطينية على قاعدة صيغة الدولتين من دون ان يتورط بمبادرات لإطلاق التفاوض، مكتفياً بتثبيت التحالف الاستراتيجي والدعم العسكري والمالي لـ”إسرائيل”، وتثبيت الانفتاح السياسي والمالي على السلطة الفلسطينية، بينما سيشكل السعي لتوسيع الدور المصريّ وإعادة إحياء الجامعة العربية بزعامة مصرية تستعيد سورية إليها، عنوان الرؤية الأميركية لخريطة المنطقة، لتشكل عامل توازن مع الدورين التركي والإيراني، والسعي لتخفيض منسوب التعاظم في محور المقاومة خصوصاً في سورية والعراق.

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Iran And Israel Are Gearing Up For A War

South Front

The Greater Middle East has been gearing up for a new war.

The Iranian parliament announced that it is preparing a draft resolution on a “defense and security treaty for the Axis of Resistance”. By signing the treaty with its allies, states and non-state actors alike, Iran will officially create its own NATO-styled military bloc in the face of the everyday growing chances of a direct military confrontation with the US-Israeli alliance.

The unofficial Axis of Resistance is, essentially, on its way to becoming a security-guaranteeing organization that will have a lot of success stories to claim.

In recent weeks, Iran’s allies and proxies have had significant success. A vivid example of this are Yemen’s Houthis. Additionally to advances on the ground, they vowed to develop, apparently with help from Iran, even more deterrence weapons to counter Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

They also pushed a base in Southern Yemen forcing the UAE forces to evacuate from it, as it said that the Saudi-UAE coalition cannot expect to stay safe as long as it is in Yemen. Such successes in the conditions of the strict naval, land and even air blockade stand a testament to the fact that some sort of higher-level organization is taking place behind the scenes.

Iran also improved its positions in Syria and Iraq, despite Israel and US attempts to stop its movements. Tehran expanded its intelligence capabilities near Jordan and Israel, while US supply convoys are being regularly blown up in Iraq.

On the wider, international front, there is hope for the Iran Nuclear Deal with Joe Biden in the White House. A full renewal is quite suspect, since Iran said that it was only possible after the lifting of every sanction, and it is still unclear if the new globalist rulership of the US is willing to go that far in attempting to de-escalate the situation.

Israel expects that it will not happen, as the IDF prepares to hold massive drills, simulating a multi-front war. Every branch of the military is planned to take part, and the forces will push both in the north and the south. The drill will simulate the “worst-case scenario” conflict.

The Israeli leadership does not hide that this is a message to Iran and its allies that an open war is not out of the question and Tel Aviv wishes to show its potential strength to deter any preemptive aggression.

Iran, however, is likely not discouraged, as the Trump Administration’s “maximum pressure campaign” apparently failed to achieve any of its strategic goals. During the past years Tehran’s position improved, and it is using the chance of re-inventing itself as an alternative center of power in the Middle East.

The core of the Axis of Resistance has been consolidated and gained new strength. The Iranian-led alliance, if it’s really created and successes in attracting at least a neutral stance towards it global players like China or Russia will likely shift the balance of power in the region, and potentially bring forth a cautious normalization of events. That remains to be seen in the future, as all sides also show their readiness for heavy hostilities.

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