Not Everyone Of Good Faith Sees The Iran Negotiations The Same Way
If someone were to ask me to rate President Obama and to rate Rep. Alan Grayson on overall job performance, I'd stretch to give President Obama a B while awarding Grayson an A+ with alacrity. Watch Grayson's Senate announcement video above to get a good measure of who the man is.
But many years ago, Barney Frank told me that no one ever agrees with a politician-- even your favorite politician-- in everything. He suggested that the only way to accomplish that would be to run for office and get elected yourself. Then he stopped and thought about what he had just said and added that after enough years go by, you won't even agree with your own votes every time!
Blue America has prioritized electing Grayson to the open Florida Senate seat in 2016-- please consider making a contribution here. He has proven himself a tireless and effective fighter for the interests of working families and wears the disdain and unmitigated hatred of the Beltway powermongers and their pathetic media lapdogs as a badge of honor. And our support for Grayson isn't just because Wall Street whore Chuck Schumer scraped the bottom of the Democratic toilet to find the most loathsome and unaccomplished nonentity in Florida's U.S. House delegation to run against Grayson. The lazy, drugged-up and spoiled son of a wealthy Republican, Patrick Murphy may be less than worthless and the cynicism that went into his selection by the odious Schumer may be jaw-droppingly outrageous, but even if Schumer had selected a normal Democrat, it would have been impossible for him to find someone of the caliber of Grayson.
That said, Grayson and I have both spent significant amounts of time in Iran and we both respect Iran's people, history and culture. And we both very sincerely want to see a return to close peaceful relations between the two countries. (I still recall, back in 1969, writing a letter home from Tehran that the Iranian people were the most pro-American folks I had ever come across, certainly more so than the French, Germans, Spanish or even Brits.) But when President Obama announced the agreement the negotiators had reached as a blueprint for peace, where I was optimistic, Grayson was very skeptical. He wrote:
I am very much in favor of peace between Iran and the United States, and between Iran and its neighbors. I recognize that an extraordinary amount of effort went into the negotiations for this agreement over the past two years. And I am pleased to see that the sanctions imposed on Iran brought it to the negotiating table.But that was the only slack he was willing to cut Obama.
Having reviewed this agreement, there are three areas that concern me:Well... he doesn't sound as wrong-headed as GOP warmongers like Tom Cotton or Ted Cruz who would like to begin a war against Iran today, but this is just an instance that proves no one, not even the best, is always perfect. Bernie Sanders seems more in sync with Obama on this than with Grayson: "I congratulate President Obama, Secretary Kerry and the leaders of other major nations for producing a comprehensive agreement to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. This is a victory for diplomacy over saber-rattling and could keep the United States from being drawn into another never-ending war in the Middle East."
First, I’m concerned that the lifting of economic sanctions will not stop Iran from continuing to be a sponsor of global terrorism. In fact, that support would now be well financed by an increase in its oil revenues.
Second, I’m concerned that Iran will continue its missile program, which would help it develop a missile directed against the United States.
Third, I’m concerned that this is just a pause in Iran’s nuclear weapons program, and not an end to it. I am hopeful that there will be peace between Iran and the rest of the world. That peace must include Iran no longer threatening the security of any other country, by nuclear or non-nuclear means, with missiles or otherwise. It must also include Iran no longer being a sponsor of global terrorism.
It remains critical that Iran, under the current regime or any regime like it, never be allowed to develop or possess a nuclear weapon-- the security of the Middle East, and millions of lives, depends on it.