Mindslaughtered U.S. Arms Control Negotiations: From Soviet Communists to Iranian Shiite Jihadists

My essay on the developments since last week’s Tom Cotton/GOP 47 letter to Iran’s leaders, was published at PJ Media, under the title,Mindslaughtered”: U.S. Arms Negotiations From Communists to Jihadists. Please read the full essay, but key extracts are included, below:


“Today, your diplomatic generals are defending [our nation] in the field of diplomacy; this too is jihad.”—Iranian President Rouhani, March 9, 2015

Irrational, vitriolic attacks on Sen. Tom Cotton and the GOP-47 for their March 9, 2015 “Open Letter to the Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran, notwithstanding, the Senators’ message has had a salutary clarifying effect. Obama administration officials, including Secretary of State Kerry, have been compelled to acknowledge that acting via the P5 (i.e., the U.S. Russia, China, France and Britain) +1 (Germany), any looming nuclear deal with Iran will be a non-binding agreement (i.e., the arrangement will impose no obligations under international law). Moreover, Senator Corker, the head of the Senate Foreign relations Committee, sent a follow-up letter to President Obama questioning administration statements that the deal with Iran would “take effect without congressional approval,” and would be submitted “to the United Nations Security Council for a vote.”  Corker’s March 12, 2015 letter concluded with this request: “Please advise us as to whether you are considering going to the United Nations Security Council without coming to Congress first.”

A spokeswoman for the National Security Council, Bernadette Meehan, responded to Senator Corker’s query in an email statement to BuzzFeed, maintaining that the United States would not be “converting U.S. political commitments under a deal with Iran into legally binding obligations through a UN Security Council resolution.”  Ms. Meehan added that any UN Resolution on this matter “would not change the nature of our commitments under such a deal, which would be wholly contained in the text of that deal.”  She also claimed: “Even if the Iran nuclear deal was blessed by the Security Council operating under Chapter VII of the Charter, … it wouldn’t … impede the ability of any parties to the deal to reach its own judgments about compliance by other parties or conclude that the deal no longer served their interests and withdraw from it.”  Meehan further told the New York Times that because Congress would eventually be asked to vote on lifting sanctions on Iran, once the Islamic Republic had been in compliance with the accord “for a considerable period of time,” Congress was not being excluded from the agreement process.

These exchanges reveal that contrary to almost all past arms control agreements, which have been Senate Advice and Consent Treaties (whose approval requires a 2/3 vote in the Senate), the Obama Administration appears hell-bent on giving legitimacy to Iran’s uranium enrichment program, and waiving economic sanctions on Iran, while not submitting this rather appalling deal (which also fully ignores Iran’s ballistic missile and nuclear weaponization programs) for a Congressional vote.  During a Sunday, March 15, 2015 CNN interview, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell provided an appropriate, understated assessment of Obama Administration hypocrisy, while re-emphasizing the concerns of the 47 signatories of Senator Cotton’s letter. McConnell highlighted the “selective outrage” of Secretary of State Kerry for ignoring both Kerry’s own meeting (as a U.S. Senator) with Communist Nicaraguan leader Daniel Ortega in the midst of the U.S.-Sandinista conflict, and then Senate Majority Leader Robert Byrd’s 1979 flight to Moscow, warning Soviet officials the Senate could thwart the SALT II nuclear treaty, under discussion at that time. Most importantly, Senator McConnell warned,

The President is about to make what we believe is a very bad deal… with one of the worst regimes in the world…The President would like to keep us out of it. We know that….He clearly doesn’t want Congress involved at all. And we’re worried about it.

… Re-reading the late Joseph D. Douglass’s 1988 compendium, Why the Soviets Violate Arms Control Treaties, is a bitter reminder of how the Soviet experience has no resonance with our ineducable present day State Department mandarins validating jihadist Shiite Iran’s “right” to enrich uranium via “negotiations.”

…Bernard Lewis, the doyen of contemporary Western Islamic scholars, in his 1954 essay “Communism and Islam,” expounded upon on the quintessence of totalitarian Islam, and how it was antithetical in nature to Western democracy, while sharing important features of Communist totalitarianism—most notably, global domination via jihad.

Mindslaughter was the brilliantly evocative term coined by Robert Conquest for delusive Western apologetics regarding the ideology of Communism, and the tangible horrors its Communist votaries inflicted.

We are in crying need of Conquest’s intellectual courage, and brutal honesty when it comes to addressing the contemporary scourge of resurgent jihadism, and its most dangerous manifestation: a nuclear weapons possessing, jihadist Iran.

Andrew G. Bostom is the author of The Legacy of Jihad (Prometheus, 2005) and The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism " (Prometheus, November, 2008) You can contact Dr. Bostom at @andrewbostom.org

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