By M.A. Saki

Nikki Haley’s lies in face of hard evidence

September 13, 2017

TEHRAN - The United States is unbelievably politicizing its approach toward the July 215 international nuclear deal which has been crafted purely based on verification.

After Donald Trump ordered a number of close aides to resort to bogus intelligence to find Iran non-compliant with the nuclear deal, his ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, in a recent speech at the American Enterprise Institute, even made the case for U.S. withdrawal from the multilateral agreement.

Haley was speaking at the same conservative think tank that helped make the case for the disastrous war in Iraq. She also visited Vienna in mid-August to press the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to inspect Iran's military sites.

Haley’s speech at the AEI included big lies such as: “Iran has been caught in multiple violations over the past year and a half” and that “there are hundreds of undeclared sites that have suspicious activity that they (the IAEA) haven’t looked at.”

All these lies come in the face of hard evidence. Since the nuclear deal - officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) - went into effect in early 2016 the IAEA has released eight reports each time confirming that Iran is living up to its obligations which include cap on its nuclear activities and intensive verification among others. The last report was released on August 31.

Moreover, just on Monday, Sept. 12, Yukiya Amano, the UN nuclear watchdog chief, told a quarterly meeting of the IAEA Board of Governors that “the nuclear-related commitments undertaken by Iran under the JCPOA are being implemented.”

Amano also told reporters on Monday that “the verification regime in Iran is the most robust”. Amano left no doubt about the intensive inspection in Iran under the Additional Protocol by saying, “I cannot tell you how many complementary accesses we have had, but I can tell you ... that we have had access to locations more frequently than many other countries with extensive nuclear programs.”

In view of these statements by Amano, whose organization is the only international body authorized to make expert comments on a country’s nuclear program, any efforts to raise questions about Iran’s loyalty to the nuclear accord is purely politically motivated with possible hidden agenda.

Trump and his diehard loyalists who intend to violate the JCPOA do not need to make distorted remarks, fabricate stories, or politicize intelligence. They can just say we want to roll back whatever the Obama administration did or that we want to withdraw from the agreement because we hate Iran.

Writing an article in the National Interest on Sept. 5, former CIA chief analyst Paul R. Pillar said Haley’s speech “used more twisted versions of familiar rhetorical twists that have been heard before from diehard opponents of the JCPOA.”

Though the JCPOA is solely related to issues such as the degree of nuclear enrichment, the sides’ commitments, verifications, removal of sanctions, etc., Haley tried to confuse the public opinion by linking the JCPOA with unrelated issues. For example, she argued Iran is terrorizing its neighbors.

However, contrary to her arguments it is Saudi Arabia, Washington’s best friend in the region, which is terrorizing neighbors. The most concrete examples are attack on Yemen and full blockade of Qatar.

These distortions and lies remind one of the neo-conservatives’ approach toward Iraq prior to the 2003 invasion of the country in March 2003. At the time, neocons, whom Trump and Haley are trying to imitate, insisted on their lies that Iraq was hiding weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) despite denials by the UN bodies. They even claimed that Saddam Hussein, a secular dictator, had links to al-Qaeda.

Let’s see what will happen now that the current U.S. administration is working hard to replace facts with fiction about the JCPOA.

PA/PA

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