May 25, 2016

Updated: Smartest Man in The White House, Boasts Of Fooling Voters, Taxpayers About Iran Nuclear Deal

Posted May 18, 2016 10:48 PM ET; Last updated May 25, 2016 5:11 PM ET

Updated May 25, 2016 5:11 PM ET

White House admits it played us for fools to sell Iran deal
By John Podhoretz
New York Post
May 5, 2016 | 8:39pm
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Obama’s storyteller backs off boasts about selling Iran deal
By David K. Li
May 9, 2016 | 1:40pm
New York Post

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State Dept. faces questions over missing tape, amid scramble over WH aide's Iran boast Staff
Posted: May 10, 2016 12:20 PM

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State Dept. faces questions over missing tape, amid scramble over WH aide's Iran boast
Published May 10, 2016

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Former Obama speechwriters laugh at 'you can keep your plan' promise
5/10/16 4:45 PM

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Posted May 18, 2016 10:48 PM ET
[From article]
What a surprise! It was revealed from the highest level that the Obama White House has been downright deceptive and had lied to the American public and media about the nuclear deal with Iran, as well as carrying on secret bilateral negotiations with Iran.
In spite of arguments by the Obama administration to the contrary, it has been clear from the beginning that the nuclear deal with Iran, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action signed on July 14, 2015, will not stop the Iranian effort to develop nuclear weapons.
[. . .]
In spite of U.N. Security Council Resolution 2231 of July 20, 2015 that calls on Iran not to launch tests of ballistic missiles, this was the third test by Iran. One of the two missiles fired in March 2016 carried the slogan "Israel must be wiped out."
By chance, the ballistic missile testing coincided with the publication of the extraordinary revealing article by David Samuels in the New York Times on May 8, 2016 on Ben Rhodes, the Boy Wonder of the Obama White House, the single most influential voice next to the president shaping American foreign policy.

Rhodes is officially the deputy national security adviser for strategic communications in the Obama administration, but he is really the spin-doctor narrating or fabricating fantasies or half-truths to the mainstream media that he arrogantly seems to despise. The willingness of the media to consume and disseminate the inaccurate information given them has long been known, but the full extent to which the media was spun has now been revealed.
The main revelation was that Rhodes presented the story of negotiations on the nuclear deal with Iran as having started in 2013 due to the fact the moderates in Iran, led by Hassan Rouhani, had won the election and became president. The moderates therefore were influential and were willing to make a deal with the United States. The media believed this, though it was disputed by well-informed individuals such as Leon Panetta, former secretary of defense, who denied any such division between hard and soft Iranians. Rhodes, with evident contempt, regards previous decision makers on Iran and Iraq – the Washington foreign policy establishment, or The Blob, as he calls it, which includes Hillary Clinton – as "morons."

Ben Rhodes, Novelist, White House National Security Deputy

Rhodes's spin was false. The negotiations with Iran had in fact started earlier in 2012, before Rouhani was elected. The White House deliberately spun the view that Iran moderates wanted peace with the U.S. and with Middle East neighbors. What is important is his contempt for the media as well as for the Washington establishment. Rhodes observed that news bureaus today do not have foreign bureaus, as they used to have, and they therefore call the White House to find out what is happening.
The result is that most of the news outlets are reporting on world affairs from Washington. Rhodes said the average reporter he talks to is 27 years old and literally knows nothing. The White House therefore shapes the news and has particular journalists it can use for spreading it and validating what the White House gives them to say. As Samuels writes, "[t]he way in which most Americans have heard the story of the nuclear deal … was largely manufactured for the purpose of selling the deal."
The consensus in the U.S. today is that the Iran deal was a major political blunder. Of the two main adversaries during the discussion, most informed commentators would agree that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who opposed the deal, was right, and President Obama was wrong.
[. . .]

Two factors are involved in the White House attempt to prevent Netanyahu from speaking. The first expressed by the media was on the wisdom of the invitation, because Netanyahu was going to criticize the Obama policy. Though most of Congress expressed opposition to the negotiations, there was a genuine difference of opinion on them. President Obama believed and still appears to believe that a deal in which Iran agreed to limit its nuclear program in exchange for relief from sanctions was the way to stop Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. Netanyahu disagreed on the whole idea and believed that Iran was not negotiating in good faith. Iran has a record of secret uranium enrichment facilities, and Israel was in danger. Netanyahu argued that the sanctions on Iran, the removal of which was the real reason for Iran's willingness to negotiate, should not be removed – in fact, should be increased.
The second factor was the White House spin, which the media highlighted, that the invitation was unconstitutional. Either Rhodes or someone else in the White House invented something called the "presidential protocol." The White House spokesperson on January 20, 2015, slightly off the point, informed the media that the typical protocol would suggest that "the leader of a country would contact the leader of another country when he is traveling there." The media, though few of whom if any were constitutional lawyers, claimed that such an invitation had no precedent in American history.
One may disagree on whether the invitation was unwise or inopportune, but it was not unconstitutional. There was no breach of any constitutional provision.
[. . .]
The New York Times incorrectly reported that Netanyahu had accepted the invitation to speak before the White House had been informed. This was not true, and the NYT had to issue a correction. Netanyahu did not formally accept the invitation until after the White House had been informed. It was not true, as Earnest had said, that the White House did not know about the invitation until Boehner announced it publicly. The spin converted the difference of opinion on an important issue into a diplomatic row with constitutional implications. In reality, Boehner had earlier in 2011 invited Netanyahu to speak and had informed the White House, which never responded.
Many in the media bought the White House spin and deception that to oppose the nuclear deal was to support Israel against the Obama administration. That made the State of Israel a partisan issue, while in the past support for Israel has been overwhelmingly bipartisan. The White House and the mainstream media owe Netanyahu an apology for their fallacious and dishonorable presentation of a controversial issue.

May 11, 2016
When the White House Lies to the Media, and Laughs Doing It
By Michael Curtis

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[From article]
Ben Rhodes is perhaps the weirdest foreign policy adviser in the history of the White House. His path to his current position as deputy national security adviser for strategic communications was, as this New York Times profile informs us, "perhaps not strictly believable, even as fiction."
Forget his title. Ben Rhodes is "the single most influential voice shaping American foreign policy aside from Potus himself," according to the Times. What makes that so bizarre is that Rhodes has no background in foreign policy at all. He was a failed short story writer who wandered into the orbit of Obama aides almost by accident and served as a speechwriter during the campaign.
But he helped the administration identify friendly reporters and nonprofits who could be counted on to carry a completely false and misleading "narrative" about the Iran deal.
And it worked.
[. . .]

What the Samuels piece shows is that the Obama administration chose to attempt to get its way not by winning an argument but by bringing an almost fathomless cynicism to bear in manipulating its own clueless liberal fan club.
It's amazing how Rhodes sees himself and his role. He refers to the foreign policy establishment as "the blob," and at bottom, he believes he and Obama are the only smart ones in the room.
Samuels's profile is an amazing piece of writing about the Holden Caulfield of American foreign policy. He's a sentimental adolescent with literary talent (Rhodes published one short story before his mother's connections won him a job in the world of foreign policy), and high self regard, who thinks that everyone else is a phony. Those readers who found Jeffrey Goldberg's picture of Obama in his March Atlantic profile refreshing for the president's willingness to insult American allies publicly will be similarly cheered here by Rhodes's boast of deceiving American citizens, lawmakers, and allies over the Iran deal. Conversely, those who believe Obama risked American interests to take a cheap shot at allies from the pedestal of the Oval Office will be appalled to see Rhodes dancing in the end zone to celebrate the well-packaged misdirections and even lies—what Rhodes and others call a "narrative"—that won Obama his signature foreign policy initiative.
[. . .]
All you have to do to discover the extent of their flim-flamming is to look at the talking points about the agreement after the preliminary deal was agreed to in April and compare it with the final agreement in July. The dishonesty in selling this deal to Congress was so profound that we still don't know yet how Iran is interpreting parts of it.
Samuels's profile is very long and, at times, strains credulity that such a creature could become a top adviser to the president. But it also unintentionally reveals how easily the Washington press corps can be manipulated into doing the president's bidding. There was very little objective analysis of the Iran deal, nor any attempt to reconcile what was in the deal with what the administration was claiming in public.
If there had been, it's doubtful that the deal would have gone through Congress.

May 6, 2016
Ben Rhodes admits administration lied to sell Iran deal
By Rick Moran

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