Surprise: Iran deal not actually a deal yet

posted at 11:01 am on November 27, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Yesterday, Iran accused the US of lying about the terms of the deal on nuclear proliferation announced over the weekend, which produced this lament by John Hinderaker at Power Line: “One yearns for the good old days when, if there was a conflict between the U.S. government and Iran’s mullahs, you could assume it was the American government that was telling the truth.” Now it appears that the White House and State Department may have not been entirely honest about whether we actually have an agreement or not.  The Times of Israel reports that the back and forth between Iran and the US forced the State Department to acknowledge that “technical details” have not been concluded — and that the agreement hasn’t gone into force yet:

Iran is currently enjoying a “window” of time before the six-month deal signed in Geneva early Sunday goes into effect, during which it is not bound to take any credible steps toward disabling its ability to produce a nuclear weapon, the State Department acknowledged Tuesday.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said that the six-month interim period, during which Iran would take steps to rein in its nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief, has not yet begun. Furthermore, there are still a number of details to be worked out, she said, without specifying what points had yet to be finalized.

Her comments created confusion as to whether the much-touted interim deal, supposedly reached by P5+1 powers and Iran in Geneva in the early hours of Sunday morning, had actually been completed as claimed. Iran on Tuesday accused the US of publishing an inaccurate account of what had been agreed. And its Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in an address to the Iranian parliament Wednesday that Iran would continue construction on the Arak heavy water plant, in an apparent breach of the ostensibly agreed terms.

“The next step here is a continuation of technical discussions at a working level so that we can essentially tee up the implementation of the agreement,” Psaki told reporters Tuesday. “Obviously, once that’s — those technical discussions are worked through, I guess the clock would start. Obviously, there’ll also be a reconvening of the political track with the P5+1, which Under Secretary Sherman will continue to be our lead negotiator on.”

So when does the clock start on the non-deal deal? Psaki says no one knows:

Psaki said that she did not “have a specific timeline” for how long the window would be in place before the six-month period began, nor did there seem to be any mechanism in place to prevent Iran from stepping up nuclear production before the scale-down went into effect.

A disagreement on the Arak plant is hardly a “technical detail.” It was the most significant part of the issues that supposedly got addressed — a sticking point that led France to balk at an earlier push by the Obama administration to settle the dispute in the P5+1 talks.  If Iran plunges forward on its plans to build a heavy-water facility, then one has to wonder what exactly the West got out of the negotiations except a piece of paper.  Also, since the argument for the deal from John Kerry and Barack Obama is that the pact forces Iran to slow down its pursuit of nuclear weapons before it achieves that capability, one has to wonder why the clock hasn’t already started — and why the White House didn’t wait until it had before announcing the agreement.

One answer to that question is found in the latest Reuters survey on the deal.  With Obama and his administration getting pounded in the polls, Obama needed some good news:

Americans back a newly brokered nuclear deal with Iran by a 2-to-1 margin and are very wary of the United States resorting to military action against Tehran even if the historic diplomatic effort falls through, a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed on Tuesday.

The findings were rare good news in the polls for President Barack Obama, whose approval ratings have dropped in recent weeks because of the botched rollout of his signature healthcare reform law.

According to the Reuters/Ipsos survey, 44 percent of Americans support the interim deal reached between Iran and six world powers in Geneva last weekend, and 22 percent oppose it.

While indicating little trust among Americans toward Iranian intentions, the survey also underscored a strong desire to avoid new U.S. military entanglements after long, costly wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Even if the Iran deal fails, 49 percent want the United States to then increase sanctions and 31 percent think it should launch further diplomacy. But only 20 percent want U.S. military force to be used against Iran.

A 44-22 margin isn’t exactly a blockbuster for Obama’s approval ratings, especially since it’s in the foreign-policy arena.  However, if the deal announcement turns out to be premature or flat-out false, the fallout won’t help perceptions of Obama’s competence and honesty, which are now plumbing the depths of his presidency in most poll series.


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Smart Power.

climbnjump on November 27, 2013 at 11:03 AM

One answer to that question is found in the latest Reuters survey on the deal. With Obama and his administration getting pounded in the polls, Obama needed some good news:

Yep, this is the real reason for all this. He needs a “victory” to rally his base after the Syria and Obamacare fiascoes, and harming Israel is always good for getting the left excited and riled up.

Doomberg on November 27, 2013 at 11:04 AM

Obama negotiates with ants….and loses.

“I have a gift”

BobMbx on November 27, 2013 at 11:05 AM

I think this is relevant. We will continue to compromise until there is nothing other than a piece of paper.

txaggie on November 27, 2013 at 11:07 AM

“When I used to have a brain, it was this. big.”

22044 on November 27, 2013 at 11:09 AM

They need to close the deal using a website. That’s the holdup.

RSbrewer on November 27, 2013 at 11:09 AM

If you like your heavy water plant, you can keep your heavy water plant.

loudmouth883 on November 27, 2013 at 11:11 AM

Who could foresee that this lyin’ administration would… well, lie? America is getting to the point of looking outside if the Liar-in-Chief says the sky is blue.

SteveInRTP on November 27, 2013 at 11:12 AM

Maybe this makes a little more sense now.

BKeyser on November 27, 2013 at 11:13 AM

The US Senate needs to punt this ‘deal’ which is a sellout.

slickwillie2001 on November 27, 2013 at 11:13 AM

Erick Erickson was reporting on this Monday. He couldn’t believe (1) how out of breath the media was to hold it up as a “win” for Obama in light of the fact that (2) it wasn’t a done deal.

Rufus on November 27, 2013 at 11:14 AM

The most important part of a negotiation is leverage against your opponent. The leverage we had was the sanctions that were crippling the economy of the Iranians. This idiot gives it all away and gets nothing in return.

It is just so frightening with these idiots in charge.

Agent of the Cross on November 27, 2013 at 11:15 AM

Her comments created confusion…

Indicative of this incoherent administration.

workingclass artist on November 27, 2013 at 11:16 AM

Yep, this is the real reason for all this. He needs a “victory” to rally his base after the Syria and Obamacare fiascoes, and harming Israel is always good for getting the left excited and riled up.

Doomberg on November 27, 2013 at 11:04 AM

Yeah but if the “deal” turns out to be as false as Benghazi being caused by a YouTube video……. then there is going to be a credibility deficit because the lazy stupid coward has no credibility to spare.

Happy Nomad on November 27, 2013 at 11:16 AM

They need to close the deal using a website. That’s the holdup.

RSbrewer on November 27, 2013 at 11:09 AM

HA!

Unfortunately…It’s clogged with Porn

NSA on the case

workingclass artist on November 27, 2013 at 11:17 AM

Outline of a Framework for some Interim Bull***t.

forest on November 27, 2013 at 11:18 AM

Interesting – this is following the same script as the supposed ‘deal’ with Karzi re American troops remaining in Afghanistan for another decade.

They negotiate, announce a deal, and then, surprise, surprise, glitches appear and the deal not only becomes far less clear or certain, but it looks as if the main purpose was just for another redirection of attention.

This might be one of the times where the incompetence of this Administration could work in our favor.

Athos on November 27, 2013 at 11:18 AM

Kerry to Obama..

“Sorry boss, I missed with this stab in the back, once they turn their backs once more I’ll make the next stab a death blow.”

APACHEWHOKNOWS on November 27, 2013 at 11:18 AM

Move those goal posts!

Give me an L
Give me an O
Give me an S
Give me an E
Give me an R
Give me an S
What’s that spell?
Obama and Kerry are Losers!

Yay! Muslim Brotherhood!
Lets give Iran more time to build its nukes!

albill on November 27, 2013 at 11:19 AM

I think they want Barry’s nutz…

/Oh.. wait.

Key West Reader on November 27, 2013 at 11:20 AM

Obama and Kerry in a room together.

Who lies first?
Who lies the most?
Who lies last?
Who will judge?

APACHEWHOKNOWS on November 27, 2013 at 11:22 AM

Erick Erickson was reporting on this Monday. He couldn’t believe (1) how out of breath the media was to hold it up as a “win” for Obama in light of the fact that (2) it wasn’t a done deal.

Rufus on November 27, 2013 at 11:14 AM

Has he not been reading the LSM the last six years?

davidk on November 27, 2013 at 11:23 AM

Sheesh. It took Iran this long to figure out what HotAir readers have known all along? The 0bambi regime lies.

It seems that this regime will try to spin their way out of anything to bring home good news. We could be losing WWIII and 0dumbo would be spinning it as “our adversaries don’t yet understand the smart power of negotiation. All they know how to do is destroy our bases, sink our ships, and shoot down our planes. They are not enlightened like we are.”

freedomfirst on November 27, 2013 at 11:25 AM

Have Kerry and Obysmal figured in this factor?
http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/iran-north-korea-missile-mike-rogers/2013/11/27/id/538945

Iran is working with NK to develop cruise missiles capable of delivering a nuclear payload.

onlineanalyst on November 27, 2013 at 11:26 AM

Obozo would lose in a game of tic-tac-toe to a 3rd grader.

Flange on November 27, 2013 at 11:26 AM

Munchhausen, Pinocchio, Machiavelli, Orwell and Goebbels orgasmed all over themselves, again.

Schadenfreude on November 27, 2013 at 11:27 AM

OT- But a headline that you don’t see every day.

Two men save shark from choking on moose

Read more: http://www.myfoxdc.com/story/24082762/two-men-save-shark-from-choking-on-moose#ixzz2lrdIhByc

Happy Nomad on November 27, 2013 at 11:28 AM

Obozo would lose in a game of tic-tac-toe to a 3rd grader.

Flange on November 27, 2013 at 11:26 AM

Nonsense! He’d storm out in a snit before he actually lost.

Smartest guy in the room? My eye!

Happy Nomad on November 27, 2013 at 11:30 AM

Watch this.

If I were Saudi Arabia, I’d hook up with Israel and slap Iran around, good.

Schadenfreude on November 27, 2013 at 11:32 AM

then one has to wonder what exactly the West got out of the negotiations except a piece of paper.

Hm. Did Iran get any of the $$ from the sanctions being lifted yet?

One would hope Iran didn’t get what they wanted before the US got what we negotiated for. However, with “smart power,” I’m not sure that we didn’t already pave the way for them to access it…

cs89 on November 27, 2013 at 11:32 AM

The only thing I’m confused about is:

Is 0bama trying to bring out the 12th Imam?…….

Or does he actually think he IS the 12the Imam?

LegendHasIt on November 27, 2013 at 11:33 AM

Or does he actually think he IS the 12the Imam?

LegendHasIt on November 27, 2013 at 11:33 AM

Isn’t he?

freedomfirst on November 27, 2013 at 11:35 AM

Then there is this too:

Iran Announces Development of Ballistic Missile Technology
…..Salami claimed that “Iran is among the only three world countries enjoying an indigenous ballistic missile technology,” according to the state-run Fars News Agency.

“Many countries may have access to cruise missiles technology, but when it comes to ballistic missiles, I am confident that only the U.S. and the [former] Soviet Union could master this technology, and now we can announce that we own this technology as well,” …..

……Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton said Iran’s ballistic missile announcement is no surprise.

“Iran’s ballistic missile program has always been to provide the delivery vehicles nor nuclear warheads,” Bolton said. “The timing of the IRGC announcement is no coincidence.”…..
More at:
http://freebeacon.com/iran-announces-development-of-ballistic-missile-technology/

Now, I can’t say that I believe that Iran’s are any better than the NorKs, but anyone with two brain cells that occasionally collide inside their vacuous skulls can see where this all leads.

And 0bama is not only abetting it, he is probably secretly aiding it. Like Clinton /Loral did with the Chinese; I betcha 0bama is doing with Iran.

LegendHasIt on November 27, 2013 at 11:36 AM

Obama and his cronys lied their way to the top and no one ever called them on their BS, so when it benefits them most to stop lying they can’t. They don’t know how.

NotCoach on November 27, 2013 at 11:41 AM

Nonsense! He’d storm out in a snit before he actually lost.

Smartest guy in the room? My eye!

Happy Nomad on November 27, 2013 at 11:30 AM

Either that or just have the media declare him the winner because the kid is, and let me be clear, a racist.

Flange on November 27, 2013 at 11:42 AM

Where’s Libfreak to tell us 99% the truth?

CWchangedhisNicagain on November 27, 2013 at 11:45 AM

Faquad Hussein Obama strikes again.

ElectricPhase on November 27, 2013 at 11:46 AM

perceptions of Obama’s competence and honesty

Can you get any lower that ZERO?

GarandFan on November 27, 2013 at 11:48 AM

but they meant well…...er?

ted c on November 27, 2013 at 11:50 AM

Hm. Did Iran get any of the $$ from the sanctions being lifted yet?

One would hope Iran didn’t get what they wanted before the US got what we negotiated for. However, with “smart power,” I’m not sure that we didn’t already pave the way for them to access it…

cs89 on November 27, 2013 at 11:32 AM

According to the Washington Free Beacon, the money went out the door last Sunday (more probably Monday, since banks needed to be open to make the transfers).

The United States released $8 billion in frozen assets to Iran on Sunday in a move meant to ensure Tehran’s compliance with a nuclear pact signed over the weekend, according to top Iranian officials. Iranian government spokesman Mohammad Baqer Nobakht confirmed on Monday morning that the U.S. government had unfrozen $8 billion in assets that had been previously blocked by the Obama administration.

So, funds paid away while waiting for the payee to sign the contract? Smart Power! What could go wrong?

Upstreamer on November 27, 2013 at 11:53 AM

Dance’n with Kerry

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3jnymeJof4

roflmmfao

donabernathy on November 27, 2013 at 11:54 AM

You have to know that the “Who’s Zoomin’ Who?” sham with the mullahs was what you’d get when Barry-O sent the “War Hero”(TM) out to get a “deal” at any cost as a distraction for his Titanic-like sinking poll numbers, and said “War Hero”(TM) did the job that you’d expect of him: aiding and abetting America’s enemies to feed his enormous, cancerous ego.

After five years, we’re becoming familiar enough with this joke of an administration to boil down its approaches to things to accurate slogans:

“I’m gonna f___ you ’til you love me!” — Slogan for the imposition of BarryCare, courtesy of its spokesman, Mike Tyson.

“It’s not my fault!” — Slogan for the effects of the imposition of BarryCare, courtesy of spokesman Han Solo.

“Don’t cross that red line, man! I know karate!” — Slogan for dealing with the potential Syrian use of chemical weapons, courtesy of its spokesman, the wimpy kid you all saw getting his lunch eaten for him in middle school.

“What red line?” — Slogan for use when the Syrians use chemical weapons, courtesy of the same wimpy kid.

“Peace for Our Time!” — Slogan for use with the Iranians, courtesy of Neville Chamberlain.

Spurius Ligustinus on November 27, 2013 at 11:56 AM

So, do we have to pass the deal in order to see what’s in the deal?

iurockhead on November 27, 2013 at 12:06 PM

So, do we have to pass the deal in order to see what’s in the deal?

iurockhead on November 27, 2013 at 12:06 PM

A “deal” inked in the dark of night without any public scrutiny….. What could possibly go wrong?

Happy Nomad on November 27, 2013 at 12:11 PM

I guess both sides have to sign the agreement first to see what Valerie cooked up.

BL@KBIRD on November 27, 2013 at 12:15 PM

“We have to sign the treaty, so you can see what’s in it.”

Akzed on November 27, 2013 at 12:16 PM

“One yearns for the good old days when, if there was a conflict between the U.S. government and Iran’s mullahs, you could assume it was the American government that was telling the truth.”

Obama gets his briefings when the paperboy tosses the NY Times over the WH fence each morning at 6am. The average American gets the most accurate news about the Obama administration from any major newspaper not published in the United States. (Sigh)

DaveDief on November 27, 2013 at 12:16 PM

Not a done deal on a deal that’s not really a deal. The biggest foreign policy achievement of the One.

CWchangedhisNicagain on November 27, 2013 at 12:26 PM

Partial deal – sanctions will be lifted.

kcewa on November 27, 2013 at 12:38 PM

Of course it’s not.

Team JugEars merely needed a shiny distraction.

Carry on.

socalcon on November 27, 2013 at 12:48 PM

It’s pretty clear this “deal” was simply a way to win the press cycle and try to get O-care off the front page.

the horizon for these people really is 3 days – at best.

rock the casbah on November 27, 2013 at 12:52 PM

This deal could help prevent Islam weakening itself further. Think of the potential hearts and minds won. The middle east could become one large Deerborn.

BL@KBIRD on November 27, 2013 at 12:56 PM

“Look what my plastic surgeon did to my face, by giving me only this much too much Botox!”

slickwillie2001 on November 27, 2013 at 1:18 PM

Way to go Swiftboat John. Looks like another Wimpy Iran deal – We’ll gladly honor our commitment on Tuesday for your lifting sanctions today.

This administration’s house of lies is going to collapse pretty soon. It can’t hold the weight of any more.

iamsaved on November 27, 2013 at 2:05 PM

When the truth finally comes out we’ll find the US is probably helping Iran develop the bomb and also providing health care insurance to all their citizens. How long before LSM wakes up and starts investigating reporting like it did so well in Nixon administration?

Herb on November 27, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Sheesh, guess this level of incompetence is par for the course in the obummer administration. Add that with the level of deception makes each foreign situation a dangerous prospect.

jake49 on November 27, 2013 at 2:33 PM

Yesterday, Iran accused the US of lying

Actually they accused the White house – Obama. And Kerry.

Just to be accurate. They rubbed Zero’s face in it. So there is no deal.

Zero lied again. Wow. I am so totally shocked. not

dogsoldier on November 27, 2013 at 2:36 PM

Is that photo of Kerry showing how much credibility he and Obysmal have?

onlineanalyst on November 27, 2013 at 3:27 PM

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said that the six-month interim period, during which Iran would take steps to rein in its nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief, has not yet begun. Furthermore, there are still a number of details to be worked out, she said, without specifying what points had yet to be finalized.

So, why don’t we maintain the sanctions until the end of the interim period, and see if Iran respects its side of the deal?

Lots of Senate Democrats want to tighten the sanctions, so this should get through Congress.

Steve Z on November 27, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Caption Kerry’s picture;

We’re that close

That’s the size of our credibility

That’s the size of my brain

That’s the size of my pieter.

banzaibob on November 27, 2013 at 6:26 PM

White House and Iran agree Benghazi attack caused by YouTube video, ‘Innocence of Muslims’.

J_Crater on November 27, 2013 at 6:37 PM

and why the White House didn’t wait until it had before announcing the agreement.

Even better question why didn’t they at least hold releasing the frozen Iranian funds until after the start date. Considering the Iranians are proven cheaters a little show yours first should have been in order. But of course when your ideology makes you see the US as the evil problem and Bushitler as being the stumbling block I guess O Kerry thought we should show first because after all they just need to know we care or something right?

The repubs should be out telling every camera they can find that liberal mentality of America is the problem not the solution is how we get these idiotic deals that are doomed to fail. But thats right O is really a good guy with just different ideas or something so says Romney/McCain the rhino losers.

C-Low on November 28, 2013 at 2:34 PM

Americans back a newly brokered nuclear deal with Iran by a 2-to-1 margin and are very wary of the United States resorting to military action against Tehran even if the historic diplomatic effort falls through, a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed on Tuesday.

Which Americans did they poll? The ones that appear on “Jaywalking” on Leno?

hillbillyjim on November 29, 2013 at 9:14 PM