Man, he wasn’t kidding about that whole “no precondition” thing, huh.
Says the NYT:
The Obama administration and its European allies are preparing proposals that would shift strategy toward Iran by dropping a longstanding American insistence that Tehran rapidly shut down nuclear facilities during the early phases of negotiations over its atomic program, according to officials involved in the discussions.
So I’m wondering if this is the same President Barack Obama who said he was going to rid the world of nuclear weapons. Maybe he means, except Iran.
If we’re not talking to them with preconditions to stop building nuclear facilities what exactly are we talking to them about? The White House is insisting that the goal of Iran shutting down its nuclear facility is still the end goal but simply not a precondition to talking.
But this kind of thinking makes simply sitting at the negotiating table a good in itself. It is not. Sitting across from Ahmadinejad only legitimizes his regime and gives him increased stature on the world stage, cementing his hold over his home country and making the Middle East and the world more dangerous.
Negotiations without an endgame leads to lopsided losses. I fear that one of the reasons Obama is announcing that there are no preconditions is that so whatever the outcome of the talks, Obama can declare some kind of victory. Hey, if there’s no way to keep score how can you tell who won?
The same lack of leverage that makes us unable to get them to shut down will hamper our efforts to get anything done with Iran including them allowing inspectors in to monitor their facility. So why talk?
In the end this matters mostly as it shows weakness. I don’t think much of this will matter because the moment Netanyahu attempts to destroy Iran’s nuclear capabilities which he clearly intends to do, that will change everything. One strike by Israel will change the positions of all the pieces on the table and Obama will be left with a decision whether to join the rest of the world in condemnation of Israel or stand with an ally.
If history is any indication, it will sadly be the former.