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Sunday, December 4, 2016

Iran warns of 'firm response' if Obama doesn't stop sanctions renewal

"Stop, in the name of love"
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani tried his best to scare Barack Obama Sunday by demanding the lame duck block an extension of sanctions passed unanimously by the U.S. Congress. Rouhani threatened that if he allowed the sanction extension to go forward, Tehran would "firmly respond." 

In a parliamentary speech, the Iranian president denounced legislation passed by our Congress to extend the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) for 10 years as a violation (twice) of Tehran's nuclear deal with six major countries. The deal curbs Iran's nuclear program in return for lifting international financial sanctions. 

It is believed that Obama will sign it on Friday, but you can never tell for certain. He has a soft spot for Iran which he gets from his senior adviser and Iran-born Valerie Jarrett.

"America's president is obliged to exercise his authority by preventing its approval and particularly its implementation . . . and if this gross violation is carried out, we will firmly respond," Rouhani said on live television to a cheering viewship chanting: "Death to America! Death to Israel!"

Iran was obliged not to violate the agreement but they did--twice--and they're upset that we're calling them on it? Too bad.

U.S. officials said the ISA renewal wouldn't infringe the nuclear deal and lawmakers say that the extension of the ISA would make it easier to quickly reimpose sanctions if [read 'when'] Iran contravened the deal.

Iran's solution to the ISA renewal was for their 290-seat parliament of assclowns to call for relaunching nuclear enrichment that was halted by the atomic deal, according to their official "news" agency IRNA. 

That should get us to lift sanctions since we imposed them in the first place because of the nuclear enrichment they were doing.

Last month, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned that extending the ISA would be viewed by them as a breach of the nuclear accord--and he threatened retaliation.

So, in Khamenei's view, Iran is allowed to violate the agreement and we can do nothing about it. 

Khamenei criticized the nuclear deal blaming Rouhani for the government's failure to improve living standards after the sanctions were released. Perhaps if Tehran wasn't so corrupt, there would be more money available to improve those standards.

I suspect when Trump takes office next month things will be dramatically different between our two nations.