Barry Nussbaum: Hello, and welcome to ATP Report. I’m Barry Nussbaum. We have a very special friend of the family on today, but before I bring her on, let me remind all of you in ATP land to do us a favor, take out your cell phone, text the word TRUTH, T-R-U-T-H, and send it to the number 88202. When you push send, you’ll be signed up in four or five seconds to receive all of ATP’s work products. The videos, writings, and links to all the important things that we do absolutely for free are right in the palm of your hand.
Okay, then, let’s bring on Clare Lopez. A long time in service to the United States government at the State Department and the CIA. She is our resident expert on American foreign and domestic policy, and she runs Lopez Liberty. Welcome back, Clare.
Clare Lopez: Thank you, Barry. Always glad to be back with you.
Barry Nussbaum: Always a pleasure. I learn so much when we chat, and it’s always appreciated. So, let’s jump right into lots of big news this week to ask for your opinions. Russia has just demonstrated an anti-satellite missile strike capability. They blew up one of their own satellites with one of these missiles, and now they have joined our rival China in capacity and capability for, well, I guess you’d call it space warfare.
So, Russia and China have now added a warfare component to their military and outer space. Is this their answer to the United States Space Force? Will there be a Cold War in space?
Clare Lopez: Well, you know, Barry, the militarization of space has been going on for quite a long time. We’ve noticed it, of course, with China, which is probably the leader in anti-satellite capability. Russia now, maybe trying to catch up with China. The thing about the Russian test, they blew up an old, defunct, not functioning satellite of their own.
Still, the debris that’s scattered from the explosion, the breaking up of that satellite actually threatened to damage their own space station up there. So, they weren’t terribly careful about what they were doing, but the point is they’ve demonstrated a capability like China’s, that I don’t know the United States has a defense against.
Barry Nussbaum: Lovely, it just gets worse, doesn’t it? Coming back to Earth, the long-stalled Iran nuclear talks are back on, starting in a week. Supposedly they’re having the pre-talks now in Vienna. Iran is demanding an end to all sanctions, and the Biden administration, like everybody. It seems to say, I think rightly so, is demonstrating that they are indeed the third term of Barack Obama because Biden will enter this deal again.
Remember, Trump, pulled us out of it a few years ago. With any possibility of success being quite minimal, in my opinion. The inspectors for the IAEA, the UN Inspection Group, the International Atomic Energy Agency are saying that they’ve been locked out of many sites. They have not been doing inspections, and Iran is bragging about massive enrichment progress. What the heck is Biden thinking to dive back into a deal that has already failed?
Clare Lopez: Well, your misperception, I’m sorry, your misgivings about these talks are very well placed, Barry. I would say that within the Biden administration, there are many appointees and others who previously served in the Obama administration from 2008 until 2016. So, you’ve got some of the very same people driving the very same impulse, I guess, to cozy up with the Iranian regime. The thing about the talks, the thing about the JCPOA, Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or the nuclear deal, was first agreed to in 2015.
Then, of course, when President Trump withdrew the United States in 2018 because the Iranians were so far out of compliance. Now, three years later, three and more years later, the Iranians are even more out of compliance.
So, for that reason, I don’t see exactly how they’ll get back into it, as badly as the Biden administration and leadership seem to want to. In terms of the amount of uranium enriched, in terms of the levels to which it’s being enriched, 60% is what they’re admitting, which probably means they’ve gone way beyond that they’re not admitting.
There is no civilian use for the fashioning, the milling, the molding of uranium metal, again, absolutely no civilian purpose for that, except only to make a nuclear bomb. Of course, the installation of many thousands of advanced centrifuges. These are the tubes, the equipment that spins up the hexafluoride gas and enriches it.
They’ve got newer, faster, and better models in there now. That means they can get to a bigger stockpile of enriched uranium, all the faster. All these things are in violation of the original nuclear deal, JCPOA of 2015, never mind in violation of the original NPT, Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty that Iran remains a signatory to, as far back as the 1970s. So, you know, I don’t see how they can get back to it.
Barry Nussbaum: It seems like, as I listen to you, and everything you say is true, this regime is so rogue. I wonder, is there anything they could do short of, I guess, shooting missiles at a carrier from the United States that would empower Biden to have the chutzpah to say, okay, enough is enough, we’re done with you. Is there anything they could do worse than they’ve already done?
Clare Lopez: What I’m worried that they’ll do unless stopped by Israel or some other way is that there will come a day when there will be a test fire, there’ll be a test explosion of their nuclear capability. Now, it is in Israel’s existential interest that not be allowed to happen. There have been more and more signals coming out of the top leadership of Israel that they are, for example, practicing how to counter the Iranian nuclear weapons program. They’re becoming more and more direct.
The Israelis are talking about a military solution, but the United States, the Biden administration, no, it doesn’t seem that anything would dissuade them from trying to talk some more. For all the good that’s done. Of course, they never, ever address the clandestine nuclear weapons program in Iran, which is where the development is taking place. As you said, Barry, places where the IAEA, that’s the International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors, are not permitted to go, even though they’ve made requests to see these sites.
Barry Nussbaum: Yeah, I think the news is bad, and the stuff we don’t know is probably worse. In the same neighborhood, as you know, and we’ve talked about a number of times, the Afghanistan pullout was maybe the worst disaster in modern United States foreign policy history. I mean, it was badly handled. In spite of the fact that the terrorists we fought for years and years are now in the government.
The Biden administration is sending them humanitarian aid. Now, this is the same place where the Taliban fighters are blowing up ISIS fighters. ISIS fighters are attacking the Taliban. Both sides are brutalizing women and men who don’t toe the line. By the way, they’re all Muslim.
So, it’s Muslims fighting Muslims, Muslims killing and torturing other Muslims, if they don’t agree with Sharia policies of the government. So, at this point, after the disastrous decisions, the Biden administration has made on Afghanistan. What are they thinking by giving more money to a leading terror organization that’s now a government where probably the money we send them, Clare, is it just going to buy more weapons to fund more terror?
Clare Lopez: Well, of course, you know, money, cash is fungible, and any aid that we send to the very much suffering Afghan people, not to diminish that level of the horrific situation the Afghan people are in, but what I’ve been seeing, and I think I’ve spoken about this on the program before. It is a situation developing very much as that existed in the 1990s prior to 9-11. That means the various ethnic and tribal groups, the Pashtun, of course, are the largest of these. But also, there are Tajiks, Uzbeks, Hazara, and Hazara are Shiites.
Now the new player on the block, the Islamic State, and they’re all descending into internecine fighting. Not that we mind them fighting each other, but the victims are the Afghan people. That’s the part that has to bother all of us.
Of course, the United States, having left behind over $85 billion worth of top-of-the-line equipment from helicopters to Humvees, small arms weapons of all kinds. They’re very well equipped, even if they sell off some of that or, you know, barter it away. The place is falling into utter chaos, and here’s the thing. It is also becoming a magnet. Just as pre-9 11, Afghanistan is becoming a magnet for jihadis all over the world.
Why? Because it is a functioning sort of emirate, and jihadis from all over the world as before, 9-11 once again are flocking to that banner, that flag. So, it’s a very disturbing situation. It doesn’t seem that the United States national security leadership is even remotely aware of what’s going on or able to remember what happened in the 1990s, leading up to 2001. It’s disturbing from a lot of angles. Of course, including the thousands, it is thousands of Americans, and special visa holders, Afghan allies, and partners left behind still to this day.
Barry Nussbaum: You know, Clare, your understanding of the politics of this specific issue is so profound and so much more advanced than the policy coming out of the Biden administration. If anyone asks, I’m recommending you for Secretary of State.
Clare Lopez: Oh dear, thank you, but no thank you.
Barry Nussbaum: Speaking of foreign policy. There was just a virtual meeting between Xi Jinping and Biden to work things out between China and the United States. You know, like climate change, even though China pollutes more than the whole rest of the world combined. While we’re banning straws in California, they’re burning coal like it was free and clean. I’m very, very concerned.
If Biden has the backbone to stand up to China, especially in regard to Taiwan. They’re being very clear, they the Chinese, that they’re going to take back Taiwan. They consider it Chinese territory. They consider the Taiwanese government and the Taiwanese people renegades and revolutionaries that need to be squashed. What do you think the United States is going to do when China finally does what they’ve been promising, which is the Cold War between the mainland and Taiwan, becomes a hot war? What is Biden going to do?
Clare Lopez: Well, intact vertebrae are not a special feature of the current Biden administration. That said, though, I’m not convinced that Beijing and the CCP have the intent to invade Taiwan militarily, either just now or even after the Olympics that will take place in China in February of 2022, in a few months. The status quo may be the best solution in the eyes of the CCP, the United States, and other allies, both Western and in the region, such as Japan.
The status quo is a kind of a cold war, a kind of a standoff. I don’t think I’m becoming convinced that it is not in the interests of Beijing to invade with military force. Yes, warplane flyovers often, but to actually invade and conquer Taiwan.
For one thing, there are a lot of connections between Taiwan and Mainland China. A lot of business connections, political connections, and intelligence connections that we don’t necessarily see on the surface. So, what I’m saying is that perhaps the status quo is the best that we can maintain at the moment, buy a policy of combined deterrence and simply the reluctance. What I think is the reluctance of the CCP to physically invade Taiwan right now.
Barry Nussbaum: Clare, tell people where they can find out about you and learn more about the work you do, please.
Clare Lopez: Well, certainly. Right here at the American Truth Project at ATP, and as Barry was telling you on your cell phones, if you would like, you could also sign up for direct cell phone text notification of videos like this one. By texting my name L-O-P-E-Z, Lopez to 88202. I also published at the Citizen’s Commission on National Security at the United West. I have published at the David Horowitz Freedom Center’s FrontPage Magazine online outlet and occasionally do videos with Jamie Glazov at the Glazov Gang on social media. You can find me @ClareMLopez on Twitter. The same, my name on Facebook, and at Lopez Liberty on Telegram.
Barry Nussbaum: There it is. She’s everywhere, the ubiquitous Clare Lopez. Thanks for coming on with us today, and I thank all of you in ATP Land for joining us today on a very insightful and informative program. We’re very grateful for Clare coming on with us today and for you for joining us. For ATP Report. I’m Barry Nussbaum.