In a move that compels me to suspend my formal apology to Madeleine Albright pending an on-site inspection, the former Secretary of State has backed Kerry's nuclear deal.
Diplomacy is hard, she says:
I teach my students that foreign policy is persuading other countries to do what you want. The tools available to accomplish this include everything from kind words to cruise missiles. Mixing them properly and with sufficient patience is the art of diplomacy, a task that for the United States has proved challenging even with our closest allies, and altogether necessary with the Islamic Republic of Iran.
So we used our diplomacy to convince Iran to agree to a deal that on paper delays their going nuclear by about a decade while guaranteeing we won't use force against them in that time. Wow. What an act of persuasion that had to have been!
And having convinced our allies to back sanctions to get this--and only this--deal, we can hardly back out now, she says:
Rejection of this accord would leave the United States isolated and Iranian hardliners empowered. It would be practically impossible to reassemble the coalition that united against Iran's nuclear activities and imposed the robust sanctions regime that brought Iran to the table. Many of our tools of influence in the region would be rendered useless, and it would hurt our ability to lead on a range of pressing global issues.
How are hardliners suddenly empowered when they control Iran right now? Remember, Iranian "moderates" in the government are simply hardliners who are willing to pretend to bend before our demands.
What tools would be useless if we don't ratify the deal? The sanctions that under the deal we end?
Our cruise missiles? They disappear?
Bases in Arab Gulf countries who fear Iran with or without nuclear weapons in their arsenal? Vanished because these allies are quietly very enthusiastic about the deal?
And if we are supposed to decouple Iran's support of terror and chaos from the nuclear issue--as we did--we can't expect our allies to decouple the Iran issue from an entire "range of pressing global issues" that our allies presumably have an interest in solving, too? But instead they'll punish us over the Iran deal by refusing to cooperate with us?
Is she really saying that we couldn't use that whole diplomacy thing to convince our allies to work on those issues? Or to continue acting against a nutball regime that clearly wants nukes? Shouldn't that be a low degree of difficulty for diplomacy in this glorious Age of Nuance?
Oh, and as part of her defense of this deal with Iran, she notes that we will be selling tons of advanced weapons to Israel and Arab states to ... what? Oh yeah, cope with Iran!
My head is spinning with the diplomatic triumph! We've gotten nuclear nonsense from this crowd and they think they've achieved something good.
Yes, President Obama now has the votes to lock his deal in place. But make Congress vote. Make President Obama veto it. And make Congress vote to uphold the veto so we know whose names to put on the nuclear strike memorial site one day in the future.
Because even though our president and Kerry may get their names on the Nobel Peace Prize, they sure as heck won't accept the blame for the deal going bad, as it surely will.
But hey, we'll always have kind words. For the Iranians.
UPDATE: I think this writer is on to something. Congress should declare this big effing deal (to steal a line from the vice president) a treaty, invoke the so-called "nuclear option" to kill the filibuster in the Senate, and then carry out a vote as if it is a treaty despite the Obama administration claim.