Monday, September 16, 2019

"Well, But It Was Their Money"

        In 2015, President Obama and the other permanent members of the UN Security Council negotiated the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, commonly known as the Iran nuclear agreement, which, in a "triumph of diplomacy", gave Iran approximately 150 billion dollars to spend as it wished.
        In return, Iran agreed to limitations on its nuclear facilities for 10 to 15 years after which time it would be free to conduct unrestricted nuclear research and development including manufacture of nuclear bombs.
         During the 15 years that the deal is in effect, Iran is still allowed to engage in missile research and development and continue terrorist activities as before. This is a nuclear  deal. It does not apply to non nuclear activities.
         The point has been raised that Iran is really just getting its own money back, that the funds in question consist of assets belonging to Iran but frozen in foreign banks as part of a program of economic sanctions to pressure Iran into giving up its nuclear ambitions.   
        Well, yes but suppose you had a neighbor who wanted to kill you and that he is always telling you that if he ever gets a gun, he is going to kill you. And suppose one day he gets a gun and suppose that somehow you get his gun. Maybe your wives are still friends and she brings it over to crack some walnuts and forgets to take it home. Or maybe his kid brings it over and leaves it in your back yard. Whatever. Anyway, do you give it back? It's his gun. He paid for it with his own money.
        "Oh, what lovely hors doevres. Death to the Jews! Kill all the Americans! I think I'll have one of those little ones with the avocado on top."

        In Iran, 'white noise' is planning for everyone you're going to kill. When that changes, we should think about giving them back their billions, and their guns and....their walnuts. Until then, maybe stick with, "No soup for you" matter who paid for what.