William Katz:  Urgent Agenda

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THE NEW OFFENSIVE – AT 9:28 A.M. ET:  Apparently, the new gimmick of foreign dictators is to take to the editorial pages of liberal American papers to make their arguments.  They probably will have a welcoming readership.  The latest scribe is the new president of Iran.  From The Hill:

Iran's president took to the Washington Post opinion pages Thursday to make the case for “constructive engagement” with the United States.

And, in report from Friday's New York Times, a prominent adviser to Iran's leaders said Tehran is prepared to gamble on a swift agreement over its nuclear program following a letter from President Obama that signalled U.S. flexibility in striking a deal.

We're sure there was flexibility.  With Obama there's always flexibility in dealing with enemies.

Hassan Rouhani's message comes just as the White House announced that President Obama is “willing” to meet with him at the UN General Assembly in New York next week in what would be the first encounter between the two countries' leaders since the nations broke off diplomatic ties in 1980. Rouhani has sought to portray himself since his June election as a moderate leader that the United States can work with to avert a showdown over the country's alleged nuclear weapons program.

COMMENT:  The problem, of course, the 900-pound gorilla in the room, is that Iran has a vast nuclear program, much of it underground, and it is far advanced.  Most reports say they're within a year of a bomb, or even less than a year.

We were warned when Rouhani came to office that he was a professional charmer, a consummate diplomat.  There are willing ears ready to listen because Obama wants to get Iran, indeed most of foreign policy, off his plate.  He has caved in on one foreign issue after another, and his fans don't seem to mind.  As long as the government checks continue to flow, who care? 

My fear is that we will get an "agreement" with Iran that will be meaningless.  They'll "scale back" a small part of their program, allow some international inspection, and pursue the bomb secretly.  Europeans will be the first to look away, for there is business to be done in Iran.  Then will come the leftist journalists, who will hail Obama as a peacemaker.  Hey, let's get back to carbon footprints.

Iran has duly noted our cave-in on Syria.  They know with whom they're dealing.

September 20, 2013