BETRAYAL: Look what Iran tried to pull during prisoner swap

Plenty of news out of Iran should have us concerned.

Despite the recent Iran nuclear deal, Iran is ramping up production of ballistic missiles before the deal restricts production of them. Maybe the fact that the Ayatollah was still publicly declaring “death to America” should’ve been a red flag.

Just the other day the deputy commander of the Iranian military used the recent capture of U.S. Sailors as propaganda, claiming that it showed their supremacy in the region.

So why do we have more reason not to trust Iran now? Well, as HotAir puts it, “One hint — if they try to kidnap some of your citizens as part of a prisoner swap.”

As they report:

The New York Times’ Peter Baker offers a gripping account of the Iranian attempt to seize Jason Rezaian’s family and keep them in Iran even as the US concluded the exchange that set the Washington Post reporter free:

Three of the freed Americans were to leave Iran on a plane operated by the Swiss, who had helped broker the prisoner talks and who represent American interests in Tehran, where there is no United States embassy. A fourth had already left on a commercial flight, and a fifth, who lived in Tehran, had chosen to stay.

But as Mr. Rezaian and the other two prisoners, Amir Hekmati and Saeed Abedini, were preparing to leave, no one could find Mr. Rezaian’s wife, Yeganeh Salehi, or his mother, Mary. Ms. Salehi, an Iranian journalist, had been arrested with Mr. Rezaian in July 2014 before being released, and his mother had gone to Iran to be closer to her imprisoned son.

“They had disappeared,” said an American official, who along with others described the events on the condition of anonymity. “Nobody could find them, and they were not answering phones. The Iranians then said there were legal issues that would prevent either from leaving the country.”

Iranian officials tried to persuade the Americans and the Swiss to take the three prisoners and leave without Ms. Salehi or Ms. Rezaian. In Geneva, Brett McGurk, the lead American negotiator, refused, saying the deal had always included Mr. Rezaian’s family.

To get Rezaian’s two family members onto the plane, it took John Kerry demanding Iranian foreign minister Mohammed Javad Zarif to comply with the terms of the exchange. Even then, the Iranians continued to play hide-and-seek with Rezaian’s wife and mother. Three times they attempted to restrain the women and refuse to allow them to board the plane, creating a standoff that lasted for hours at the airport. Finally, after numerous attempts to welch on the deal, the Iranians allowed the two women to board the plane.

If Iran can’t be trusted in matters as simple as this, how can we expect them to comply with the nuclear deal? Yep, that’s a rhetorical question.

Remember Hitler had good diplomacy with Poland too. But good diplomacy is only good as long as both sides are committed to the deal.

[Note: This post was authored by The Analytical Economist]


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