It is bogus, it is dangerous, it was built on lies and capitulation, cheating has been going on, the so-called inspection system is a farce, and President Donald Trump wants to do something about it — this nuclear arms deal with Iran.
Every 90 days the president has a responsibility to decertify the program if Iran has overstepped the bounds. It has, and Trump did, but he did not say we were walking out of the seven-party agreement that will almost certainly stay in place.
All kinds of options are nevertheless open. U.S. economic sanctions could be renewed by Congress, and there could be an effort to renegotiate a plan that allows Iran to continue its march toward horror as all obstacles are gradually removed.
The anything-goes applause team says: Wait a minute, all is hunky dory, hope is absolutely justified and no certification rules have been broken.
That is absolutely, unmistakably 100 percent wrong. A major certification provision has been shattered. It says the president can certify the deal only if Iran is verifiably and in every respect heeding what the agreement calls for.
But Iran adamantly refuses to allow the U.N.’s International Atomic Energy Agency to inspect its military bases, and, in so many words, the head of that organization has finally conceded we therefore have little idea what deadly mischief Iran could be up to.
This is no small thing. It is very nearly everything. If you can’t verify what Iran is doing, the deal begins to lose what little meaning it ever had.
Nuclear weapons could be with us in a hurry because detection and immediate reaction are crucial. And here’s what could be going on at those bases: prohibited activities to develop devices of a kind that could make cities or much of the nation of Israel go poof in minutes.
Oh, look, complain the deal’s defenders; Iran is letting intensive searches go on in nuclear facilities. And that’s true, even though it is like a thief telling police you can search this room but not that one for the stolen object, you jerks.
The deal in fact says inspectors should be allowed to go wherever they determine a pressing need, and President Barack Obama promised the agency “will have access where necessary, when necessary.”
The current necessity happens to be underlined by Iran’s continued demonstration of its nuclear ambitions, its permitted ease in getting there, and its militaristic and terroristic aggressiveness.
The nation has, for instance, been openly, happily and unceasingly testing ballistic missiles in almost certain preparation for someday delivering nuclear warheads. Though not in violation of the sloppy deal, this is in violation of a U.N. Security Council resolution, and it’s hugely important.
Then there’s the scary truth that Iran could quickly replace the highly enriched uranium it has gotten rid of. The deal incredibly let Iran keep its nuclear infrastructure intact, meaning the tools are there when the prohibition disappears.
Keep in mind that Iran has already been caught ignoring the rules on a variety of fronts, such as playing with heavy water and centrifuges to help enable mushroom clouds. It has even been caught trying to buy prohibited nuclear technology from Germans.
And as evidence that its temper is malicious instead of sweet and nice, as the Obama administration promised, consider its financing of terrorist groups, the hounding of U.S. Navy ships and the nabbing of U.S. hostages, just for starters.
Europe still likes the deal that has meant all kinds of profitable trading. But Europe’s signatories to the deal – Britain, France and Germany – are also saying the U.N. agency should inspect those military bases.
That is the first thing Trump should aim to negotiate. But there is lots more in a deal so unbelievably lopsided that it returned multibillions to Iran up front while promising rules of behavior would cease in roughly a decade.
Jay Ambrose is a columnist for Tribune News Service. Reach him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.