While John Kerry and Barack Obama deservedly get the “credit” for bowing down to Iran’s Supreme Leader by making concession after concession and ignoring the “redlines” created by the Administration, it was Hillary Clinton who made the first concession to Iran which was allowing them to continue to enrich uranium. That was the concession which allowed the talks to continue, it was also the concession that set the tone for negotiations if Iran insisted, the United States agreed to give them anything they want.
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, In July 2012, Ms. Clinton’s sent her closest foreign-policy aide, Jake Sullivan to a secret meeting with Iranian diplomats in Oman which made no progress:
“In a string of high-level meetings here over the next six months, the secretary of state and White House concluded that they might have to let Iran continue to enrich uranium at small levels, if the diplomacy had any hope of succeeding.”
That was a beginning of a subtle change in strategy, the objective was no longer to disable and remove Iran’s nuclear weapons program, it became doing what was necessary to make a deal.
“She recognized the difficulty of reaching a solution with zero enrichment,” said Mr. Sullivan, who now serves as Mrs. Clinton’s top campaign adviser on both domestic issues and foreign policy.
Mrs. Clinton left the State Department in early 2013. Later that year, in the midst of international talks, the Obama administration agreed publicly that Iran could continue to enrich uranium, completing the shift in policy that had been set in motion before Mrs. Clinton left her post.
The real problem with that first concession is that if Iran’s nuclear program had nothing to do with creating nuclear weapons, there is no reason for the rogue regime to enrich their own uranium. So their demand to continue enriching was just another hint of their nuclear intentions.
After Mrs. Clinton left the State Department, Mr. Sullivan became Vice President Joe Biden’s national security adviser at the White House. From there, he continued negotiating with the Iranians for another two years. He is credited, along with former Deputy Secretary of State William Burns, with developing much of the framework for the nuclear agreement eventually reached in Vienna this July.
Under the final deal, Iran’s centrifuge program would be reduced to 5,000 machines from nearly 20,000. But Iran is allowed to expand this capacity to an industrial scale after a decade.
The centrifuges represent another ‘redline” that was crossed. Initially the American position was that all the centrifuges had to be destroyed or turned over to another country. Under the deal the nearly 15,000 centrifuges are put into storage by Iran who “crosses their hearts and pinky swears” that the machines will stay in storage.