This has been a very tragic news week with the effects of Hurricanes Irma and Maria still looming heavily on the island of Puerto Rico. Funny thing — I don’t recall the liberal progressive left going so berserk over Obama’s failure with the BP oil spill. It wasn’t until the rant by native Louisianian, James Carville, that the left took notice. Ya know, after all it was just those Southern folks in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana affected.
Of course, the horror of Las Vegas had rightfully dominated the week’s news cycle as there are so many questions remaining unanswered…the longer it takes to define the shooter’s motive, the more this unnerves people.
But, as your friendly neighborhood analyst, it is my duty, my responsibility, to keep you apprised of other key issues happening. And there is one that is quite interesting, disconcerting, and yes, perplexing.
As reported by Reuters, “U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Tuesday the United States should consider staying in the Iran nuclear deal unless it were proven that Tehran was not abiding by the agreement or that it was not in the U.S. national interest to do so.
Although Mattis said he supported President Donald Trump’s review of the agreement curbing Iran’s nuclear program, the defense secretary’s view was far more positive than that of Trump, who has called the deal agreed between Iran and six world powers in 2015 an “embarrassment.”
Trump is weighing whether the pact serves U.S. security interests as he faces an Oct. 15 deadline for certifying that Iran is complying, a decision that could sink an agreement strongly supported by the other world powers that negotiated it. “If we can confirm that Iran is living by the agreement, if we can determine that this is in our best interest, then clearly we should stay with it,” Mattis told a Senate hearing. ”I believe …, absent indications to the contrary, it is something that the president should consider staying with,” Mattis added.
Earlier, when Mattis was asked whether he thought staying in the deal was in the U.S. national security interest, he replied: “Yes, senator, I do.” The White House had no immediate comment on Mattis’ remarks, which once again highlighted the range of views on major policy issues within the Trump administration.”
This is a major separation of policy. And I must ask, why does President Trump have someone, in such an important position as SecDef, who has a 180-degree different policy position? The Iranian nuclear deal was a major campaign statement made by President Trump. As the Reuters article states, President Trump once referred to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) as an embarrassment. There is no way we can confirm that Iran is abiding by the terms of this agreement, which as you know I have stated is folly. We’ve been down this road previously — shall I say, North Korea? We continue to evidence weakness by offering rogue nations agreements which they see only as acquiescence. If anyone believes Iran is abiding by any such agreement, they are delusional.
Iran is the number one state sponsor of Islamic terrorism; that has not changed. Iran’s revolutionary guard is a terrorist organization and is freely operating, alongside Hezbollah, another designated terrorist organization, in Syria. Iran has been working with, colluding with, North Korea enabling them to develop their nuclear weapons capability, and delivery means. Iran was not supposed to be conducting any conventional weapons deals, and it has been, such as purchasing the deadly S-300 surface-to-air missile system. We can talk about all the aggressive actions Iran has undertaken against our naval vessels operating in international waters. Iran wasn’t authorized to conduct the litany of ballistic missile tests, yet it has. Iran has been adamant that it will not allow U.S. nuclear arms inspectors into its country…so how exactly are we supposed to verify their compliance?
There is nothing about Iran and its current theocratic leadership that is in the national interest of the United States. The Iranian-developed explosive force penetrators (EFPs) were responsible for at least 20 percent of the deaths and injuries to our troops in Iraq, as they were used with Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). And up until the 9-11 Islamic terrorist attack, it was Iran, and their proxy terrorist army, Hezbollah, who had inflicted the highest level of death and injury against this nation…the 1983 Beirut Barracks bombing. There were some 234 Marines, Sailors, and some Soldiers who lost their lives in that truck bomb attack.
There is a 34-year history of Iran not acting in the national interest of the United States, yet we have rewarded them with billions of dollars in laundered cash, and this sham of an agreement. We’ve discussed here how Iran has been using civilian air planes to transport its terrorist wing military unit, the Quds Force, on deployments. Yet we have fostered better business opportunities for them to purchase more U.S. civilian air planes.
I know any time you ask a tough question or bring up a valid point about the Trump administration you run the risk of being verbally assailed. But, I am not one to suck up to anyone when the security of my country and its citizens are at stake. I have asked why is the IRS Commissioner John Koskinen still in place? Now, I ask, how can the Trump administration have a SecDef who holds the same policy position as the Obama administration on the Iranian nuclear deal? That is an important and valid question, and it needs to be answered. It’s evident that the Trump administration is not on the same sheet of music, and this is too critical of an issue to screw up.
October 15 is not that far away, and the answer the American people will get is very important. There is nothing about Iran that is in our national interest. This issue should not require mass intellectual deliberation, just let the facts speak for themselves. But for the Trump administration SecDef to come out and respond with such a blatantly different policy position from that of the president is disconcerting. I completely understand having varying perspectives from which you gain counsel, but those perspectives should all emanate from a home base of a fundamental, principled place of understanding and agreement. And I must ask, what has so changed about SecDef Mattis from when he was U.S. Central Command Commanding General Mattis who vehemently disagreed with President Obama on Iran…and was subsequently released from his duties for retirement?
That I find ultimately perplexing. Then again, I was confused as to why General Mattis wanted Michele Flournoy to be his deputy. She was President Obama’s undersecretary of defense for policy…and was rumored to be Hillary Clinton’s choice for SecDef.
[Learn more about Allen West’s vision for this nation in his book Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Faith, Family and Freedom]