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When love of Iran regime is indefensible
Preaching an alternative US foreign policy, Sen. Murphy ties himself into knots
Like former senator-turned-sectary-of-state John Kerry, Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) is ambitious and thinks he is a foreign policy whizz. Murphy is building up his profile in the hopes that one day, a Democratic president will give him the top diplomatic job, which will look great on his resume when he runs for president. The problem, however, is not that Murphy’s arguments on foreign policy are so horribly weak and disjointed, but that he contradicted himself in a session that was barely one hour long.
Murphy deployed all the talking points of the Iran regime’s lobby in Washington, painting a picture of contrasts: The nuclear deal with Iran, aka JCPOA, is the key to Middle East stability and world peace. Without the deal, the region becomes dangerously unstable and might go up in flames.
Murphy simply ignores that without JCPOA, Iran froze its nuclear program for fear of Trump’s wrath and unpredictability. When former President Donald Trump was succeeded by President Joe Biden, Iran started advancing its nuclear program like never before. Also, when Trump moved the US embassy to Jerusalem, Hamas did not dare to throw rocks on Israel. But when Israel tried to evict Palestinian residents in Jerusalem, Hamas launched — on Biden’s watch — a full scale war on Israelis.
But facts do not matter to Murphy. During his Zoom seminar with the Middle East Institute, a Washington think tank, he said that “unless we are ready to invade Iran and impose our terms, which is a neocon fantasy and does not work,” then the only option to deal with Iran is diplomacy.
To Murphy, there is one way through which America can use its power: Invade Iran. Options such as crippling the Iranian military power, for example through a week of aerial campaign, or making Iran bleed through low intensity warfare, do not feature in Murphy’s rhetoric. You want to know why? Because Murphy wants to neutralize America’s military power by always associating using it with “invading other countries,” and thus, he wants to bring to American minds the miserable memory of the Iraq war.
Now that American military superpower is taken out of the equation, America’s choices become limited to diplomacy, which comes in two forms: Sanctions or conceding to Iran.
Murphy then trashes sanctions, saying America has been relying on them in ways that rendered them ineffective, that they do not work anyway, that they never hurt regimes but only hurt innocent Iranians, Syrians, Iranians or Russians.
So, if military power is not an option and sanctions do not work, what is America left with when dealing with Iran? Murphy’s (and the Iranian lobby’s) implicit answer is: Concession. Murphy wants America to reenter the nuclear deal with Iran because that takes care of the main Iranian threat, the nuclear program. Once that happens, America should fold, disengage from the region, drawdown troops, shutdown military bases, and let “Saudis and Iran talk about a new security architecture.”
Murphy wants America out of Iraq too, and out of Syria, where President Bashar “Assad is not going to lose,” and where “Russia and Iran have more interests” than America. Murphy thinks Washington should withdraw all troops from Syria (there are barely one thousand US troops embedded with Kurdish militias that help hold territory to prevent ISIS from reconstituting).
Like Russia and Iran, Murphy wants US troops out of Syria, which weakens Kurds and allows Assad and Iran to take the northeast, an area that is strategic for Iran’s bridge to the Mediterranean.
But wait. Before America leaves the Middle East and hands over the keys to Iran, Murphy wants Washington to do Tehran one last favor: Pressure Israel into stopping evictions in Jerusalem, twist the arm of Israeli caretaker Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to force the creation of a Palestinian state. Why America has no interests in Syria but interests in beating Israel is one of the wonders of the “peace and love” foreign policy presented by Murphy.
Such discrepancy in Murphy’s foreign policy is not the only contradiction in his rhetoric. The senator from Connecticut wants America to return to the nuclear deal with Tehran before the Iranian election on June 18. He said that such return should happen while Iran’s “moderates are still in power,” and that reviving the deal would further moderates to stay in power.
Murphy was asked about Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif’s audiotape leaks, in which he said that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) opposed the nuclear deal in 2015 and still does now. The senator belittled the IRGC power by saying that decision-making in Iran is not in the hands of IRGC or Zarif, but rather in the hands of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei who, according to Murphy, plays the IRGC and Zarif against one another.
So Murphy calls for grasping the opportunity and reviving the deal before the window closes if moderates are voted out of office, then in the same breath says the final word in Iran is with Khamenei.
Murphy does not notice the contradictions in his statements, but is yet selling America his “sane” foreign policy as an alternative to Trump’s “crazy” policy.
Murphy’s election campaign receives funding from Alexander Soros, whose famous billionaire dad George Soros funds the Iranian lobby outfit in Washington, the Quincy Institute. When the founders of the Quincy Institute were still running the National Iranian American Council (NIAC), Murphy was one of NIAC’s star speakers at various events.
This might explain why Murphy ends up marketing a foreign policy that is exactly the policy of the Iran regime.
For those who don’t know, Iran’s foreign policy is informed by the idea that the policy of Shah Reza Pahlavi, whom the current regime toppled in 1979, made of Iran a regional power but was needlessly cozy with imperial America and evil Israel. The Islamist regime of Iran wants to prove that Tehran is a world power, despite America and Israel.
But Islamist Iran’s regional bullying forced America to enact the “Carter Doctrine” to protect Gulf allies and Israel from the danger of crazy mullahs. Now Iran, and Murphy, argue that the Carter Doctrine is antiquated because America is not reliant on Gulf oil anymore, and because the Cold War is over.
And once America leaves the region, Iran — through dialogue with Saudi Arabia, per Murphy — becomes the manager of a new security architecture, one that Iranian FM Zarif calls the “Greater Persian Gulf,” which means the gulf, plus the Red Sea (Yemen) that controls over half of world trade traffic, and the Eastern Mediterranean.
Oh and before America leaves, it can do Tehran a solid by beating Israel on its head.
If Murphy, the Iranian lobby, or anyone from woke America or the Democratic Party think the lines above mischaracterize the true intentions of Iran and its US friends, please show us how, and feel free to poke holes in our understanding of the Murphy-Iran Doctrine for a new Middle East.