The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Saturday, March 21, 2015


The story of David Patraeus raises questions that remain unanswered to this day. Patraeus is a decorated general whose genius resulted in clear success late in the Iraq war, stabilizing the country and demolishing Islamist elements inside the country. All of that changed with the ascendency of Barack Obama. Appointed to head the CIA by Obama, he fought administration hacks in the aftermath of Benghazi, arguing against the lie (perpetrated to protect Obama during a close election campaign) that an anti-Islamic video was to blame for a terrorist attack resulting in the murder of a US ambassador and three other Americans. As a result, he was, many believe, outed for an affair he had with a biographer. Further, he was threatened with criminal prosecution with a clear intent of keeping him quiet. He retired and removed himself from the public eye. Then, inexplicably, he was then forced to plea bargain a federal indictment in a transparent effort to "controversialize" him and anything he might say that conflicted with Barack Obama's policies.

It looks like the administration coercion worked for a time, but no more. Patraeus probably realized that he had little left to loose and has re-entered the debate. Larry Kudlow reports:
Don't just rely on Benjamin Netanyahu's passionate advice to Congress on his way to reelection that Iran is our archenemy. Now we have the counsel of retired general David Petraeus, who gave a remarkable interview this week to the Washington Post. Petraeus agrees with Netanhayhu: Iran, not ISIS, is the real enemy.

His message: "I would argue that the foremost threat to Iraq's long-term stability and the broader regional equilibrium is not the Islamic State; rather, it is Shiite militias, many backed by -- and some guided by -- Iran."

The general adds, "Longer-term, Iranian-backed Shia militia could emerge as the preeminent power in the country, one that is outside the control of the government and instead answerable to Tehran."
With each passing day, it appears that a deal with Iran is in the offing. If Bibi and David negotiated the deal, I'd be confident that it is in the best interests of Israel, the United States and our other long-term allies. But with Barack Obama, John Kerry and their Team of 2s doing the "negotiating" ... my confidence in a good deal approaches zero.


Larry Kudlow also asks some very important questions that the Team of 2s has not adequately answered:
So why are President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry trying to do business with Iran? If we know who the militias really are and know that Iran wants to take over Iraq and control the whole region, why is the United States talking about lifting economic sanctions and negotiating some sort of accommodationist deal with our arch enemy?

And why is the U.S. doing this with oil down 50 percent and Iran a high-cost producer? The economic table is set for a catastrophic fiscal blow to Iran -- our enemy.

According to a Wall Street Journal news report, Iran needs $130.70 per barrel of oil to balance its budget. But the price of Brent crude is about $55, or roughly 60 percent below what Iran needs. It's hard to get credible economic numbers for Iran, but it's a safe guess that the budget is most of the state-run economy. Therefore, cheap oil is deadly for Iran.

So I ask again: Why are we helping them? We've got Iran on the ropes. Why loosen the sanctions?
Why ... indeed?