President Trump says he has come to a decision on whether will remain a partner to U.S. the Iran nuclear deal, also known as the P5+1 and officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). While I have no knowledge of what the president will announce, I do know that the Iran deal you were told about by President Obama and his cronies is not the real Iran one.
Parts of it were hidden from the public, and the Obama administration lied to America about other parts. Even the administration admitted it, in a New York Times Magazine piece by Ben Rhodes that explained how he led the administration’s efforts to misrepresent the truth in order “to sell” the deal.
To help the reader decide whether the JCPOA deal makes sense for America, I offer the following list elements of the deal that the Obama administration lied about or kept secret.
- The P5+1 deal gives Iran the capacity to enrich for bombs but NOT for power plants. The deal says that Iran can enrich fuel for peaceful purposes. However, under the agreement, Iran is allowed to keep 5,060 centrifuges, which according to former deputy director of the CIA Mike Morell is enough enrichment to produce bombs but not enough for a power program.
- The JCPOA lifted the ban on the Iranian ballistic missile program. UN Security Council Resolution (UNSC) 1929, passed before the deal was signed and as a precondition, states that “Iran shall not undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons.” The P5+1 resolution passed by the UNSC changed that language. It no longer prohibits Iran from carrying out ballistic missile work but rather asks them not to carry out ballistic missile development. Some reports say that John Kerry begged Iran not to talk about the changes.
- The deal allows Iran to go nuclear after ten years. Do you remember when John Kerry insisted the that deal was a “forever deal?” That was a lie. Some of the provisions expire after year ten, and the rest of them after year fifteen. Based on the agreement, Iran could have in place a nuclear infrastructure that could produce the significant quantities of weapon-grade needed to create a few nuclear weapons within months.
- The promised sanction “snap-backs” don’t really exist. Obama gave Europe, China, and Russia a written promise that foreign companies that make deals with Iran would not have to stop working with Iran should sanctions need to be re-imposed in the event of a violation.
- According to the framework deal, Iran was supposed to reveal the details of its nuclear program. We were told that as part of the agreement, Iran would have to “fess up” to the UN inspectors about their previous nuclear activity. The reason for the historical inquiry isn’t to find out whether or not Iran had a nuclear weapon’s program so they could be reprimanded for being bad children. By understanding the Iranian nuclear program before the agreement, the IAEA will know how, when, and where to inspect their program in the future. Iran refused to let this happen, and eventually the U.S. stopped asking.
- The deal gives Tehran leverage to blackmail the West since the Iranians can threaten and have threatened to walk away from the JCPOA with a 35-day notice. Under Paragraph 36, Iran can claim that any part of the P5+1 is “not meeting its commitments” under the agreement. That triggers a 35-day set of meetings. Once the clock runs out, Iran can claim the issue “has not been resolved to [its] satisfaction” and that it “deems” that the issue “constitutes significant non-performance.” Iran can then “cease performing its commitments under this JCPOA in whole or in part.”
- Iran gets to “self-inspect” at the Parchin military site. Before the agreement, the IAEA sought access to Parchin, which has long been suspected of being the location where Iran was developing its detonation systems for nuclear weapons. Iran even admitted to using Parchin to test exploding bridge wires, which are used as nuclear detonators, but the Iranians claimed the test explosions were not for weapons development.The Obama administration had promised lawmakers that IAEA inspectors would be able to inspect Parchin and resolve all PMD issues before any final deal was inked. But that didn’t happen. Instead, the administration allowed Iran to sign a secret side deal with the IAEA permitting the Iranians to self-inspect the facility rather than grant IAEA inspector robust access. An Iranian statement in September 2015 confirmed that the Iranians collected their own samples, “Iranian experts took samples from specific locations in Parchin facilities this week without IAEA inspectors being present.”
David Albright, president of the Institute for Science and International Security, explained at a panel hosted by the Hudson Institute that self-sampling even under surveillance is inadequate. Inspectors need to be on the ground to identify dusty nooks and corners where violators forgot to dust; the mutually agreed upon areas are by definition the ones that violators know have been sanitized. …
- Iran broke the terms of the heavy water provisions of the deal twice in 2016 but Obama let them “off the hook.”
- A secret side deal unearthed by the Associated Press allows Iran to upgrade and modernize its centrifuges and increase its enriching capacity, all before the deal officially expires in 15 years. The projection is that this will reduce the time for Iran to build a bomb to six months instead of the year time frame that was promised. Nut that six months was reduced even further by another secret side deal reported by the Institute for Science and International Security (and never given to Congress). The report reveals that Iran’s breakout time to a bomb is not a year as claimed by the Obama Administration but less than five months.
As part of the concessions that allowed Iran to exceed uranium limits, the joint commission agreed to exempt unknown quantities of 3.5 percent LEU contained in liquid, solid and sludge wastes stored at Iranian nuclear facilities, according to the report. The agreement restricts Iran to stockpiling only 300 kg of 3.5 percent LEU [low-enriched uranium].
The commission approved a second exemption for an unknown quantity of near 20 percent LEU in ‘lab contaminant’ that was determined to be unrecoverable, the report said. The nuclear agreement requires Iran to fabricate all such LEU into research reactor fuel.
If the total amount of excess LEU Iran possesses is unknown, it is impossible to know how much weapons-grade uranium it could yield, experts said.
- The Iran nuclear deal significantly reduces the reporting requirements regarding Iran’s nuclear program that existed before. That is according to IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano, the head of the international inspection group International Atomic Energy Agency. Iran threatened Amano with harm if he reveals anything about the side deals.
- There are two secret side deals to the nuclear agreement with Iran that will not be shared with other nations, Congress, or with the American public. In late 2016, The Daily Beast revealed the existence private files outlining hidden agreements made as part of the Iran nuke never released by Obama because he might find them embarrassing. Earlier Bloomberg View described other potentially embarrassing documents that the administration classified to save face, including an intelligence assessment written to excuse the U.S. collapse on Iran disclosing past nuclear work, which began by imagining a world in which Iran will fully cooperate with the deal for the next 20 years, and then went from there.
Additionally, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), an Iran resistance group that was the first to reveal other elements of the Iran nuclear program to the world, claimed in April 2017 that the rogue regime has not stopped its nuclear weapons program despite the P5+1 nuclear deal.
This should be sufficient information for President Trump as he makes his decision on whether to pull out of the deal. Let’s hope he makes the right choice.
Cross posted at The Lid