Nobody understands why we're dealing with Iran through Russia

(AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

As Ed pointed out earlier today, it’s already obvious how insane it is (the appropriate word) for the United States to be offering sanctions relief to Russia in the middle of a war in exchange for getting Iran to sign off on a meaningless and largely unenforceable deal. That’s particularly true when you consider that Iran just dropped a number of missiles around one of our facilities in Iraq. But it’s not just pundits and foreign leaders who are confused by the Biden strategy (to put it charitably) in these negotiations. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman (a Biden appointee) was doing the rounds of the Sunday shows this weekend and was asked about why we would be doing this. Even Sherman was forced to admit that it’s “hard to understand” what’s going on. (Washington Times)

A top Biden administration diplomat admitted Sunday that it is “hard to understand” why the U.S. and other world powers are negotiating a new nuclear deal with Iran, as Tehran claimed responsibility for a Sunday rocket attack that struck near the American consulate in Irbil, Iraq.

Appearing on “Fox News Sunday,” Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman was pressed on the administration’s continued push to secure a new nuclear deal with Tehran.

Officials have said the ongoing nuclear talks in Vienna are nearing completion, despite Iran’s aggression toward Americans in Iraq and even amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Mind you, Sherman isn’t saying that she doesn’t understand the situation. She’s just saying that it’s obviously hard for you little people to figure it out. She then goes on to make several claims that almost sound nonsensical. Check it out for yourself.

You’ll notice that she repeats variations of the phrase ‘Iran must never be allowed to have a nuclear weapon’ multiple times. But there is no indication given as to whether or not this supposed new deal would even achieve that goal. In fact, when the host asks her if she thinks this new deal is “as good” as the one reached under the Obama administration, she admits that she doesn’t know because “it’s not closed yet” and she doesn’t have any details for us. Iran hasn’t allowed an IAEA inspector into their facilities in ages and even disabled all of the monitoring cameras that were installed. On what basis are we assuming that’s going to change? Are we supposed to just take Russia’s word for it?

At the same time, more people are already pointing out the obvious reality that Ed Morrissey brought up this morning. Even if this supposed deal is reached, the real winner will be Russia because the arrangement will create a “sanctions evasion hub” for them.

With a nuclear deal likely to be announced in the coming days, the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), a think tank critical of the agreement, says a new deal will allow Putin to circumvent tough Western sanctions that have been put in place since Russia invaded Ukraine.

“Policymakers should understand why this deal will establish a sanctions evasion hub for Vladimir Putin based in Iran—dramatically undermining international attempts to halt Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and deter further aggression,” according to the document, which FDD has furnished to lawmakers in the House and Senate. “In addition to looking for a sanctions-free channel for trade, Russia might use this opportunity to learn from Iran’s decades of sanctions circumvention expertise and better prepare to offset future financial pressure from the West.”

So let’s recap, shall we? We’re keeping quiet about many of Iran’s transgressions because Joe Biden is so desperate to cut a deal with them. And he’s doing this at the same time that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard is firing sizable missiles into Iraq near our consulate. The only way the deal goes through is if Russia approves it. And they expect to get some sanctions relief as their part of the bargain and a trade channel with Iran. But we’re told on an hourly basis that the sanctions against Russia are the only thing that will get them under control. And they’re telling us all of this while Putin continues to push forward with the invasion of Ukraine and has started killing journalists in addition to innocent civilians.

Man, that’s just one heck of a package, isn’t it? There were countless people back in 2020 who expressed concerns about Joe Biden’s history of flubbed foreign policy choices, were he to be elected, including among some of his supporters. Those concerns were obviously well-founded. What a colossal mess.