The Biden administration’s efforts to arrive at another deal with Iran are beyond absurd. They belong in a Twilight Zone preface. “You’re traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a land of delusion, self-abasement, suicidal ideation, and madness disguised as statecraft. That’s the signpost up ahead – your next stop, the Twilight Zone!”
Barak Ravid supplies the material for today’s reflections in the Axios report “Iran hasn’t agreed to U.S. conditions for removing IRGC from terror list.” Ravid reports: “Iranian officials have not agreed to publicly commit to de-escalation in the region — a U.S. condition for removing the country’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) from a terror list, two U.S. sources with direct knowledge of the issue and one Israeli official told me.”
Analyze this (emphasis added): “An agreement to restore the 2015 nuclear deal [Ed.: The framing of the imminent agreeement as a restoration is deceitful, to avoid the terms of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act] is nearly complete, but Iran’s demand that President Biden reverse former President Trump’s decision to designate the IRGC as a Foreign Terrorist Organization is one of the last remaining sticking points….In recent weeks, U.S. envoy for Iran Rob Malley negotiated the IRGC point indirectly with the Iranians through EU political director Enrique Mora.”
Query what happened to the friends of Vladimir Putin who have been so helpful thus far. They must have advocated for Biden’s proposal that the administration “would remove the IRGC from the FTO [Foreign Terrorist Organization] blacklist in return for a public commitment from Iran to de-escalation in the region.”
If you can’t trust a public commitment from the Iranian regime, whom can you trust?
Creative juices are flowing: “The Iranians didn’t agree to the U.S. demand and suggested giving the U.S. a private side letter instead, two U.S. sources and one Israeli official told me.”
Cultural sensitivity has come into play: “State Department spokesperson Ned Price hinted on Monday that the U.S. is waiting until after the two-week Nowruz holiday to determine whether Iran is willing to move on its demands.”
Clarification: “The senior State Department official later clarified that Price’s comments did not mean that the U.S. is going to wait until after the Nowruz holiday, but expects to get the Iranian response within days.”
I fear that the adage that applies here is where there’s a will, there’s a way.