Another Example of the Obama Admin’s Dishonest Campaign to Sell Iran Nuke Deal

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Center for Security Policy, by Fred Fleitz, Aug. 18, 2016:

Over the last few months, a lot of new information has come out on how the Obama White House misled the American public, Congress and the news media about the nuclear deal with Iran before Congress voted on the agreement last September.

According to a May 5, 2016 New York Times profile of National Security Council Adviser Ben Rhodes, the Obama administration used false narratives to promote the nuclear deal and conducted a campaign to manipulate and mislead journalists as part of a media “echo chamber.”

Several liberal organizations helped facilitate this echo chamber.  One of the most notorious was the far-left Ploughshares Fund which sought and received funding from liberal philanthropist George Soros. This included an April 2015 request for $750,000 to use mainstream media to counter opponents of the nuclear deal and parrot White House talking points.

Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-KS) has called for an investigation on whether large payments by Ploughshares to National Public Radio slanted NPR’s coverage of the nuclear deal and kept congressmen who opposed the agreement off the air.

The latest disclosure on how Ploughshares funding may still be distorting the debate over the nuclear deal concerns a Washington Post contributor.

According to an August 16, 2016 Washington Free Beacon by Adam Kredo, Allen Weiner, a Standord law professor and Ploughshares-funded expert, recently penned a Washington Postop-ed defending the nuclear deal but the Post failed to mention that he is on the payroll of the Ploughshares Fund.  According to Kredo, Stanford’s Center for International Security and Cooperation (where Weiner acts as a senior lecturer), received $100,000 from Ploughshares in 2015.  Weiner received a $15,000 payment from Ploughshares for a 2007 paper.

In an email to Kredo, Weiner denied speaking to anyone at Ploughshares about the nuclear deal or knowing the group’s position on the agreement.  Washington Post Editorial Page Editor Fred Hiatt disputed Kredo’s claim that Weiner is on the Ploughshares “payroll” and said he saw no conflicts of interest.

However, on August 11, 2016, the Washington Post ran an op-ed co-authored by Weiner that defended a $400 million payment to free four U.S. prisoners held by Iran as “American diplomacy at its finest.”  Many experts believe this payment amounted to ransom and have harshly criticized the Obama administration for concealing it from Congress.

The $400 million was secretly flown to Tehran from Geneva in an unmarked plane.  The payment was made in small denominations of euros and Swiss francs.  The plane transporting the American prisoners was not allowed to take off until after the planeload of cash landed.  Iran says this was a ransom payment.  The Justice Department opposed the timing of this payment because it looked like ransom.  Weiner ignored these facts and repeated the absurd Obama administration position that this was not a ransom payment but represented America repaying an old debt to Iran.

With the Obama administration under fire for the controversial $400 million it paid to Iran, I have no doubt someone recruited Weiner as part of its Iran deal echo chamber to draft his Washington Post op-ed defending its dubious rationale for this payment.  This op-ed did not appear out of thin air.

Was Weiner on the Ploughshares “payroll” to promote the Iran deal?  There’s no evidence of this (at least yet) and he denies it.  However, given the unusual timing of his piece mimicking administration talking points that the $400 million was not a ransom payment, it seems likely Weiner is part of the White House media echo chamber to mislead the American people and Congress about the Iran deal.

Weiner’s article also suggests this echo chamber is still being used to generate false narratives for the White House to defend the nuclear deal.  Further investigation by journalists may prove that the Ploughshares Fund is still funding these distortions.

Also see:

12 Times The Obama Administration Caved to Iran on Nuclear Deal

AP

AP

Washington Free Beacon, by David Rutz, July 7, 2015

On issue after issue over a potential nuclear deal with Iran, the Obama administration has caved.

An analysis from the Foreign Policy Initiative‘s Tzvi Khan published June 29 laid out the myriad ways the U.S. has fallen short, misled or simply kowtowed on sanctions, uranium enrichment, Iran’s breakout capacity, whether Iran could be a good actor and more.

President Obama claimed in his 2015 State of the Union address to have “halted” Iran’s nuclear program and “reduced” its stockpile, sweeping and inaccurate claims for which he earned three Pinocchios from the Washington Post fact-checker.

On April 2, when Obama touted the framework agreement and “historic understanding” between Iran and world powers, he claimed “Iran has also agreed to the most robust and intrusive inspections and transparency regime ever negotiated for any nuclear program in history.”

Reports emerged in the weeks and months following that the U.S. had backed off this demand and Iran would not be subjected to the “anytime, anywhere” inspections that many experts deem a red line in any negotiations.

Obama also repeatedly said he would not take any option off the table when it came to preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, until an interview he gave with Israeli television May 29 which effectively signaled to Tehran that was no longer something they had to fret.

“A military solution will not fix it, even if the United States participates,” Obama said. “It would temporarily slow down an Iranian nuclear program, but it will not eliminate it.”

Secretary of State John Kerry has also had a number of demands or claims walked back by his own remarks or those of others, for instance on the potential dismantling of Iran’s nuclear program.

“I don’t think that any of us thought we were just imposing these sanctions for the sake of imposing them,” Kerry said Dec. 10, 2013, while testifying before Congress. “We did it because we knew that it would hopefully help Iran dismantle its nuclear program. That was the whole point of the regime.”

But Obama himself said during the April 2 announcement that “Iran is not going to simply dismantle its program because we demand it to do so,” and the framework indicated Iran would not have to dismantle its nuclear infrastructure.

Also, after Kerry first said that as part of the nonproliferation treaty in November 2013 that the U.S. did not recognize Iran’s right to enrich uranium, he said less than a month later to Congress, “I can’t tell you they might not have some enrichment.”

In an April interview with PBS, Kerry said the U.S. would not accept Iran failing to disclose the military dimensions of its nuclear program, saying flatly, “It will be done. If there’s going to be a deal, it will be done.”

Sure enough, during a press appearance June 16, Kerry told State Department reporters the U.S. already knew everything Iran had done.

“We have no doubt,” he said. “We have absolute knowledge with respect to the certain military activities they were engaged in. What we’re concerned about is going forward.”

You get the idea. The U.S. has also made conflicting statements on Iran’s ballistic missiles, Iran’s underground enrichment facility at Fordow, and, to the chagrin of spokeswoman Marie Harf, Iran’s failure to comply with the Joint Plan of Action as it increased its nuclear stockpile over the past 18 months.

As another deadline comes and goes, it’s unclear how much more Iran might be able to get before a final deal is potentially struck.

The administration has its own sense of deadline, though, as Kerry put it. It certainly has its own sense of what constitutes good high-stakes bargaining, too.

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Also  see:

Pro-Iran Shadow Lobby Launches Bid to Kill Iran Sanctions

Hasan RouhaniBy :

A network of pro-Iran advocates are uniting behind a new campaign aimed at killing bipartisan legislation meant to increase sanctions on Tehran should it cheat on a recently inked nuclear accord.

The latest bid to kill sanctions in Congress is being led by the Iran Project, a little known group that is deeply tied to, and funded by, some of Tehran’s top U.S. advocates.

The Iran Project went live on Monday with an anti-sanctions letter signed by a who’s who of liberal former U.S. officials, many of whom have long advocated to roll back sanctions on Iran and increase diplomacy with the rogue regime.

The letter, which quickly gained traction in some foreign policy circles, urged Sen. Bob Menendez (D., N.J.)—one of the chief architects of the new Iran sanctions bill—to back off his bid and let the bill die.

Liberal outlets such as the Huffington Post and others have also gone after Menendez in a bid to force him to abandon the bill, which is hotly opposed by the White House but supported by 48 senators.

The Iran Project claims that the new sanctions bill would “move the U.S. closer to war” with Iran.

The missive is signed by former ambassadors Thomas Pickering and Ryan Crocker as well as by former National Intelligence Officer Paul Pillar and several other foreign policy experts known for taking a soft line on Iran.

Read more at Free Beacon

Hagel funded group pushing talks with al-Qaida

imagesCAX0I76Dby Aaron Klein

TEL AVIV – Secretary of defense nominee Chuck Hagel sits on the small board  of a peace fund that finances an international “crisis management” group that  long has petitioned the Algerian government to cease “excessive” military  activities against al-Qaida-linked jihadists, WND has learned.

The organization, the International Crisis Group, or ICG, called on Algeria  to grant legitimacy to the very al-Qaida-linked group reportedly behind the  kidnapping of about 40 foreign hostages, including several Americans, at a  natural-gas field in Algeria.

Two Americans escaped today unharmed as Algerian special forces launched a  rescue operation, according to the state news agency. At least six people were  killed, the Associated Press reported. Dozens more remained unaccounted for,  including Britons, French, Norwegians, Romanians, Malaysians, Japanese,  Algerians, at least one American and the captors.

ICG petitioned for the Islamist group to participate in the Algerian  government.

Hagel  serves on the board of The Ploughshares Fund, a George Soros-financed fund  that pushes for a nuclear-free world.

The Ploughshares Fund identifies itself as a “publicly supported foundation  that funds, organizes and innovates projects to realize a world free from the  threat of nuclear weapons.”

The fund calls itself “the largest grant-making foundation in the U.S.  focusing exclusively on peace and security issues.”

Since its founding in 1981 by San Francisco philanthropist and activist Sally  Lilienthal, Ploughshares says it has awarded many hundreds of grants “whose  aggregate value exceeded $60 million.”

The fund is in turn financed by a small number of foundations, including  Soros’ Open Society Institute, the Buffett Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation  of New York, the Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the  Rockefeller Foundation.

One of the groups funded by Ploughshares is ICG.

Soros himself funds ICG directly via his Open Society and also sits on ICG’s  executive committee which consists of eight members.

ICG long has petitioned for the reformation of the Algerian government and  for the inclusion of Islamist political parties, including two groups that seek  to turn Algeria into an Islamic state.

In a July 2004 ICG report obtained by WND, ICG calls on the Algerian  government to curb military action against al-Qaida-affiliated organizations,  particularly the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat, currently known as  Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb.

Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb is reportedly behind the hostage crisis  currently under way in Algeria.

The ICG report also called for Algeria to open talks with an armed Islamic  terrorist group known as Houmat Daawa Salafia, or HDS.

ICG names the two Islamic groups in its recommendations to the Algerian  government.

“Give top priority to ending the remaining armed movements, mainly the GSPC  and HDS, through a political, security, legal and diplomatic strategy,” states  the ICG report.

“Avoid excessive reliance on military means and do not allow these movements’ purported links to al-Qaida to rule out a negotiated end to their campaigns,” continued ICG’s recommendation to the Algerian government.

ICG has issued at least six other reports recommending Algeria transition to  a democracy that will allow the participation of the Islamic groups seeking to  create a Muslim caliphate.

After Algeria’s president, Bouteflika, won more than 80 percent of the vote  against Islamic opposition groups in 2004, Robert Malley, an ICG associate,  recommended, “Rather than exclude all his opponents from the policy making  process, he could empower them.”

ICG’s Malley was an adviser to Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign.  He resigned after it was exposed he had communicated with Hamas. WND  reported Malley long had petitioned for dialogue with Hamas.

WND also reported ICG has  petitioned for the Egyptian government to normalize ties with the Muslim  Brotherhood.

Read more at WND