Friday, April 3, 2015

Break of Day

I'm here until the sun goes down, and am up before its rise -- all because I need a coffee (tastes funny and now its cold; should have bought a Coke instead). Nothing earth-shaking here as the Globe fare is unappealing once again. Even the deserts $uck.

Maybe this will help me get hungry -- even if the baby is sick and coughs it up:

"Milestone reached as world powers, Iran agree on deal" by Carol Morello, Washington Post  April 02, 2015

Wow, things really did clear up.

LAUSANNE, Switzerland — Iran agreed in principle to accept significant restrictions on its nuclear facilities for at least a decade and submit to international inspections under a framework deal announced Thursday after months of contentious negotiations with the United States and other world powers.

In return, international sanctions that have battered Iran’s economy would be lifted in phases if it meets its commitments, meaning it could take a year or less for relief from the penalties to kick in.

The framework agreement, a milestone in negotiations that began 12 years ago, is not a final deal.

They didn't begin that far back; Bush wasn't talking to them, and in fact refused after Iran got jittery inn 2003 after the invasion of Iraq.

But it creates parameters for three more months of negotiations over technical details and some matters that remain unresolved. Any one of those issues could doom a comprehensive agreement. Among them is the pace at which sanctions will be suspended.

The agreement includes almost all the restrictions on Iran’s nuclear facilities, laboratories, mines, and mills that the United States had sought, but Iran would get several benefits that may make the deal more palatable to politicians and the public in Tehran. It would not have to close any of its three nuclear facilities, though it would be left with only one that would enrich uranium — at levels low enough to create fuel for power plants but not high enough to create weapons-grade uranium.

The limitations would produce a one-year ‘‘breakout’’ period, meaning it would take Iran a full year to build up enough material to build one nuclear warhead, compared with current estimates of two to three months, officials said.

Many sanctions initially would be suspended, rather than lifted permanently as Iran sought, so they could be ‘‘snapped back’’ into place if Iran was discovered to be cheating, the officials said.

Iran’s apparent acceptance of so many conditions sought by the United States could give the Obama administration a tool to fend off critics in Congress who want to impose new sanctions to wring more concessions from the Iranians. The White House fears such steps could scuttle the talks and prompt Tehran to resume its nuclear program at full tilt. Iran claims its nuclear program is for peaceful civilian uses.

Throwaway sentence because you know, implied building bomb.

While the negotiations will continue through June, much of the attention will now shift to the White House and its defense of the negotiations, both in classified briefings to Congress and in public arenas.

President Obama hailed the agreement as a ‘‘historic understanding’’ and asked whether anyone really thinks that the deal is ‘‘a worse option than the risk of another war in the Middle East.’’

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, a persistent critic of the negotiations, told Obama by telephone that a final deal based on the parameters announced Thursday ‘‘would threaten the survival of Israel.’’


Stop crying that every time you don't get your way. The worst!

The announcement of the agreement was made by weary-looking diplomats from Iran, the European Union, the United States, and five other nations. Most had slept only one or two hours after the previous day’s talks, which stretched nearly through the night.

They sounded exuberant even before they arrived at a Lausanne high school a few miles from the hotel where the last rounds of talks had been held. Many diplomats had been cautious after the negotiations failed to meet a March 31 deadline. But once the bargaining ended Thursday, there was a flurry of excited tweets.

See: Noah's Arc

‘‘Big day,’’ wrote Secretary of State John Kerry. Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister and chief negotiator in the talks, seemed to go out of his way to thank Kerry for investing so much time and effort in the negotiations, which he said had been conducted with ‘‘mutual respect.’’

I would like to thank Kerry for taking the heat from Israel and still going through with this.


Under the agreement, Iran’s heavy water reactor in Arak would be rebuilt so that it could not produce weapons-grade plutonium. No nuclear fuel would be reprocessed, and spent fuel will be exported or diluted.

Iran’s underground plant at Fordo would be converted from a uranium-enrichment site into a nuclear physics and technology center. The site was built secretly deep inside a mountain near Qom and would be difficult to destroy by military attack.

As European foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini was speaking, the State Department was e-mailing reporters a fact sheet....

That's what I've been reading.


Globe says it is the best chance even though more work needs to be done.

Better start here:

"Congress wants input on nuclear deal, is willing to compromise" by Jonathan Weisman and Jennifer Steinhauer, New York Times  April 03, 2015

WASHINGTON — Leading lawmakers from both parties in Congress responded cautiously Thursday to the tentative framework for a nuclear deal between Western powers and Iran, demanding to review any final agreement but pointedly refraining from a vow to kill the accord.

Then all that bluster during Nuttyahoo's visit was just.... bluster?

Congress could still scuttle a deal if lawmakers move forward with tough new sanctions on Iran just as economic and nuclear penalties are supposed to be lifted.

I expect them to try and scuttle.

And Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the panel would continue with plans to formally draft bipartisan legislation April 14 insisting on congressional examination of any agreement.

The committee’s leadership was looking for ways to shape a bill that would gain broad approval in both parties.

“If Congress appears to be bypassed, that’s not good for the national debate and national unity as we move forward with Iran,” said Representative Eliot L. Engel of New York, the ranking Democrat on the Foreign Affairs Committee.

That sentiment was bipartisan.

It always is when it comes to Israel. Makes you wonder who they are really serving.


Beyond the leadership suites, a more hard-edge response came quickly.

“The Obama administration’s efforts to get a deal at any cost will have a greater cost than the world can bear,” said Representative Michael McCaul of Texas, chairman of the Homeland Security Committee. “If this deal moves forward, the consequences for the US and our allies in the region will be dire.’’

Some Democrats hailed it, but other Democrats tried to find a middle ground between embracing the accord and undermining it.

Thanks for standing behind your president, Dems (I'm better than you!)

Senator Robert Menendez’s indictment Wednesday on corruption charges — and his decision to step down from the top Democratic spot on the Foreign Relations Committee — elevated the more diplomatic voice of Senator Benjamin Cardin of Maryland, the ranking Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee.


"The criminal charges cloud the political future of the top Democrat — and former chairman — of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who has played a leading role on Capitol Hill on matters involving Iran’s nuclear program and US efforts to improve ties with Cuba. Menendez said he would temporarily step aside from his role as top Democrat on the committee but appeared more defiant than ever at a hastily called news conference Wednesday that felt more like a political rally, with enthusiastic supporters cheering him on." 

He's angry and not going anywhere, meaning the resignation will be coming soon. 

Maybe he can find a room in Cuba.


Still, "a senior administration official hinted at compromise, but the jousting is likely to continue for months, and pressure could mount on Republican leaders to toughen their stand."

Who do that?

"Obama has legitimate reasons to be bitter about his famously difficult relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. A cardinal rule of diplomacy is that friends can disagree, but not in public. Netanyahu has crossed that line once too often in his determination to defeat Obama’s Iran policy in Congress. But this is no time for personal recriminations. Obama needs to end the war of words with Netanyahu and reset relations with Israel. Together, they have to show Iran there will be no daylight between the two strongest military powers in the region — Israel and the United States, [what with]  Putin on the march in Europe, a turbulent Middle East in crisis, and China ascendant in Asia."

I left that disappointed. Battle on Capitol Hill (above) and wagon-circling in Middle East (Yemen) done.

So I guess it won't be Iran behind the ruining of the Final Four this year:

"School spokesman Michael Schoenfeld said at a news conference that the school would not release the name of the student." 

They are citing privacy concerns, and I'm almost certain it was some Jewish kid behind the mind-manipulating psyop hoax! Other than that, I'm sorry they are so separated at Duke, especially when the brothers (literally and racially) love me at Sunday hoop (and I love them).

Maybe things would be different at Arkansas, but I'm $ure Bain can help them with their image!

Sun has yet to appear today, readers.