Barry Nussbaum on Daily Ledger Discussing Syria, Iran, Turkey and Israel
Graham Ledger: Page three now. A new offensive in Obama's war that's not a war in Iraq near Baghdad Iraqi forces hit 19 Islamic State targets. Of course, Iran is now playing a key role in helping fight Iraq, fight the terrorists, and in Iran, a Lebanese American citizen has been arrested on charges of espionage. This, as the Ayatollah continues his vocal and open contempt for the United States.
Ayatollah Khamenei: One of the things that Americans have done in recent years is they have made certain people embellish the U.S. appearance and pretend that even if Americans were someday the enemy, they are no longer hostile. This is the objective. The goal is to hide the face of the enemy from the Iranian nation so that its hostility goes unnoticed while it can push ahead with its hostile acts and stab us in the back.
Graham Ledger: So this is the guy that Obama trusts to uphold the Obama Iran nuke treaty. In fact, there is apparently evidence already that the Iranian regime is in violation of the New Deal. So, now what? Joining me now from Southern California, international affairs expert and editor of the Nussbaum Report, Barry Nussbaum. Barry, missiles, Iran clearly is acquiring intercontinental ballistic missiles may not be in violation of the Obama Iran nuke deal, but it is in clear violation of other agreements and deals that have been hammered out through the U.N.
Barry Nussbaum: Well, there's no question Graham, they are flaunting their lack of respect for the preexisting agreements and within the JCPOA, the Iran nuclear deal, there is a prohibition of development of any missiles that can carry nuclear payloads. They are so blatant about their bravado they are showing videos on, get this YouTube, of the underground missile silos that are holding apparently several hundred of these ballistic missiles, and they're proclaiming their unhittable by bombs from the air.
Graham Ledger: So here they are clearly on a war footing, and Obama is proceeding with the Iran nuclear. So is Iran now, in your estimation, already in violation of the agreement, or are they simply doing an Obama and rewriting the agreement, or is it both?
Barry Nussbaum: You know, this is the craziest thing I can remember in American history for decades. Remember a few weeks ago, Obama announced that because Iran had signed, he was now signing. So we were now moving towards sanctions relief, movement of the hundred-plus billion dollars back to Iran, opening up of trade and all the normalization procedures that Iran has been screaming for years. Come to find out, as they say down south, that Iran never signed the JCPOA, that it was significantly rewritten by the Ayatollah, passed by the Parliament, and numerous sources have leaked the deal that they signed out of Iran that shows it's an entirely different deal. So the United States says it's signed and we have a deal. Iran says they've signed and they have a deal. Those are two totally different contracts, and some of the clauses that Iran put in are so wacky that I don't understand why this isn't headlines in coast-to-coast. So if you want to call it what it is. The White House lied. There is no deal, and what Obama signed, he's the only one signing it. He's the only one that says I'm going to adhere to it. As bad as it is, the one that Iran is going to do is totally bad. They're totally different.
Graham Ledger: You got a living, breathing agreement, right and subject to the change of the Parliament of Iran and the Iranian Parliament has already said that, hey, we're not going to allow international inspectors on our military sites and many of the centrifuges in the what's going on to develop the nuclear warheads are happening on these military sites. They have no intention of following this agreement. They just want their money, but let's move on to Turkey real quick.
Barry Nussbaum: Okay.
Graham Ledger: We have the president there now trying to solidify his power and turn that country into a true theocracy just like Iran, and in my opinion, they may be as dangerous as Iran at some point.
Barry Nussbaum: Well, get this. Ertegun has moved that country so far into the Islamic camp that he's openly saying he's going to change all the laws, that we're very progressive and pro-Western regarding women's rights, regarding religious freedom, regarding their alliance within the European Community and NATO. I want to see in a couple of years if that literally doesn't turn into a northern Iran. He is very fundamentally Islamist, and he has said and is no secret he does not want ties with the United States. He doesn't want any ties with Israel. He's very anti-Semitic, and he makes no secret about it. What's crazy is a number of years ago, I was in a congressional office with the head of the Foreign Relations Committee when the White House called to say the Turkish Ambassador was in the White House and they wanted this congressman to come to a meeting at that time the allies were so strong, the United States, Turkey, and Israel that there were joint defense pacts, there were trades of all kinds regarding military cooperation. Those are ancient historical days. At this point, Graham, I think you're right. I think Ertegun is going to move Turkey right into the camp run by the Ayatollah in Iran.
Graham Ledger: And he's licking his chops over Syria. I want to talk about Syria, but we're coming up on a time element here, and so I want to kind of zoom out a little bit and look at the entire Middle East through the perspective of Israel. What do you do now? I mean, clearly, the United States has abandoned Israel. Israel is pretty much on its own. Is it now, if you're Benjamin Netanyahu, are you searching for new allies? I'm going to put allies in air quotes because I don't know that there really are any allies for Israel in the Middle East.
Barry Nussbaum: There are strange bedfellows in these strange times. Graham, you called it. Israel has had its back turned by the United States the same as the other, more moderate Sunni countries. The Royal Jordanian Air Force, the Israeli Air Force, and the Saudi Air Force are now training together, flying missions together, and having joint cooperation between the three air forces. It has never happened in history, and they're all scared to death about Iran, and so they have decided to work together. Isn't that a crazy thing to be able to announce?
Graham Ledger: Galvanized by Obama and the powder keg that he has created, and I'm fairly certain that history is going to look back on this moment and see that Obama has picked the wrong side for the wrong reason.
Barry Nussbaum: Well, he's breaching the agreements with those countries. Absolutely.
Graham Ledger: Absolutely. Thank you.
Barry Nussbaum: Thank you.