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AIPAC sets 'guidelines' for Iran nuclear deal

AIPAC, the American Israel Political Action Committee, makes the case for congressional pressure on Iran.
U.S. President Barack Obama is pictured on-screen speaking at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference in Washington March 4, 2012.      REUTERS/Joshua Roberts    (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) - RTR2YU77
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In The New York Times on Feb. 22, AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) leaders Michael Kassen and Lee Rosenberg, provided “guidelines” for the Obama administration’s diplomatic efforts to achieve a peaceful dismantling of Iran’s nuclear weapons program. They said AIPAC supports “a policy that complements the current negotiations with a range of congressional actions that threaten greater economic and diplomatic pressure on the Iranian government.” They continued, “In fact, diplomacy that is not backed by the threat of clear consequences poses the greatest threat to negotiations — and increases the prospects for war — because it tells the Iranians they have nothing to lose by embracing an uncompromising solution.”

This approach of “supporting the current policy” with these provisos reminds me of President Ronald Reagan’s statement, “Trust, but verify,” while meeting with Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev on Dec. 8, 1987, at the signing of the INF (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces) Treaty.

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