How Obama deceived Israel on the Iran nuclear negotiationsthis interview with Shmuel Rosner.
Behind the scenes in the Oman channel, Obama approved far-reaching concessions that Israel (to say nothing of other American allies) regarded as profoundly damaging to its security. Meanwhile, the Obama administration continued to participate in the so-called P5+1 negotiations, in which American officials pretended to hold the line against the concessions that Obama was making in secret. Those officials repeatedly flew to Israel, where they briefed Netanyahu on the sham P5+1 process, ostentatiously expressing their deep and sincere concern for Israel’s security.
This deception had an intelligence component. When the Oman negotiations got serious, the United States and Israel were still cooperating on covert operations that, among other things, introduced the destructive Stuxnet virus into the computer system servicing Iran’s nuclear program. Fearing that these operations would scuttle his secret diplomacy, Obama brought them to an end. However, he was in no position to explain matters to Netanyahu, so he busied Israeli intelligence officials with elaborate planning for the next round of covert operations—the round that never materialized.
Obama's "special relationship" with Israel and his warm rhetoric toward the Jewish state are intimately bound up with his deception of it.But Doran says that Obama failed to learn the lessons from the 1950's Eisenhower administration.
Obama’s deceptions damaged America’s credibility with its major Middle Eastern allies, all of whom share Israel’s fear of a resurgent Iran. The importance of maintaining credibility with allies was one of the major lessons that Eisenhower learned from his failed Egyptian gambit in the 1950s. The United States has no standing alliances in the Middle East to guide her behavior there—no regional equivalent to NATO in Europe, or to the series of bilateral treaties that exist in Asia. There is, that is to say, no set of formal legal commitments that helps the president sort friend from foe. Each president must conceive the region anew as a conscious intellectual act. Eisenhower discovered that the wild political crosscurrents of the Middle East make the task more complex than it might at first sound. Friends of long standing sometimes adopt policies that antagonize the United States, while traditionally hostile states whisper beguilingly that they hold the solution to its problem.
Egypt beguiled Eisenhower and Iran beguiled Obama. Unlike Ike, however, Obama never wised up. As a consequence, America’s friends do not trust her, and her enemies do not fear her. When making policy toward the Middle East, a president should recite often the simple motto of the First Marine Division of the Marine Corps: “No better friend, no worse enemy.” This is the greatest lesson that Eisenhower can teach future American presidents. It’s too late for President Obama to change course, but not for President Trump.I don't believe that history will treat Hussein Obama very kindly. He has done lasting damage to the United States' relationship with a whole host of allies. Whether Donald Trump can undo some or all of that damage remains to be seen. Let's just say that I had a lot more confidence in Ronald Reagan after the Carter administration than I do in Trump, although if Trump continues to select good cabinet members, there may be hope.
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