I've been hearing the question on Fox News, should Obama try to negotiate with the new Iranian President Hasan Rouhani? After all, we know we can't trust the Iranians.
Iran will demand in return that international sanctions be eased, focusing first on obtaining small reductions to signal Western "good faith." Mr. Obama and Europe already seem eager to comply. Western diplomats will assert defensively that these concessions are merely a matter of "sequencing," and that they expect substantive Iranian concessions. They will wait a long time. Mr. Rouhani fully understands that once sanctions start rolling back, restoring them will be hard, perhaps impossible, absent a major provocation.
Mr. Rouhani will not supply one. Instead, he will continue making on-again, off-again gestures seducing the West into protracted negotiations. Meanwhile, Iran's nuclear-weapons and ballistic-missile programs will proceed unimpeded in unknown, undisclosed locations. This was his 2003-05 playbook.
It's a given that we can't trust the Iranian president. So why is that a problem? Well. It's not. The problem is that we can't trust Obama to refuse a deal with the Iranian president, even one that clearly sacrifices the interests of the American citizens. The reality is that Obama will agree to just about anything, confident that his sycophants in the press will promote it as an historic achievement.
Do you wonder why Obama's foreign policy is so utterly incoherent? It's because for Obama there is only domestic policy. When global unrest strikes, the world outside of U.S. borders becomes a stage upon which Obama plays for domestic consumption. It doesn't matter what happens over there as long as Obama is cast in an attractive light over here. The role he plays to satisfy the politics of the moment dictates policy towards enemies and allies. Oh, that wasn't your Red Line Mr. President?
Benghazi is another great example. Libya was supposed to be the place where Obama would demonstrate how al Qaeda was on the run and how the world loved Obama. In accordance with that narrative a policy was in place to "normalize operations" and reduce the number of security personnel at the consulate. It would show how with Obama as president, Libya was as safe as Paris. Don't they just love him over there.
During the hearing, the top regional security officer in Libya over the summer, Eric Nordstrom, and Lt. Col. Andrew Wood, a Utah National Guardsman who was leading a security team in Libya until August, placed the blame squarely on Lamb, the deputy assistant secretary of state for international programs, whom they said was the official who denied those requests.
"All of us at post were in sync that we wanted these resources," Nordstrom testified, adding that Lamb had directly told him over the phone not to make the requests, but that Cretz decided to do it anyway.
"In those conversations, I was specifically told [by Lamb] ‘You cannot request an SST extension.' I determined I was told that because there would be too much political cost. We went ahead and requested it anyway," Nordstrom said.
As we all know, Ambassador Stevens never got those additional security forces — forces that he requested on several occasions — and as a result he and three others did not survive the planned terrorist attacks on the Benghazi consulate on September 11, 2012.
As to negotiating with the Iranians we should expect to hear how the brilliant Obama was able to forge an historic agreement, made possible through his bold phone call to the Iranian president. The agreement will be meaningless since the iranians have no intention of halting their nuclear weapons program, and Obama knows they have no such intention. But announcing an agreement that pretends they do will be such good PR for Obama. And that's all the matters.