Iran is virtually using all of the money to reboot their economy, says the State Department. But they can’t say for sure that every dollar in the $1.7 billion payment, which some have called a ransom (we all know it was a ransom), won’t go to fund terrorist activities. That’s what Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken said to CNN’s Chris Cuomo
“Do you think that you could guarantee from the State Department to the American people that this doesn’t get filtered into groups, like Hezbollah, and other terrorist allies that Iran has; that not one dollar of it could go there?” asked Cuomo.
“Oh, we can’t say that every single dollar will go there. What we can say, based on what we’ve seen so far, is that virtually all of it is going into the economy, not into the military," replied Blinken.
Oh, I feel so much better. Iran is the largest state sponsor of terrorism. They just got a $1.7 billion ransom from us to release four detained Americans in January. You don’t think they’re not going to take a piece of that to fund terrorism? Second, Blinken said that the Iran nuclear deal made America safer, and that it prevented Iran from getting enough nuclear material for weapons until much later. That’s not making America safer; it’s kicking the can down the road for the next guy, or gal, to handle. Obama knew he probably had to drop some bombs on Iran to stop some of the enrichment process. That, or the next president would have to do something militarily relatively soon, so he decided to delay, hatch this irresponsible deal, and leave this, Obamacare, Yemen, Syria, Libya, and ISIS in the lap of the next head of state.
Iran has also been caught trying to skirt the agreement. Guy has written extensively on the deal, where German intelligence reported that the country was trying to procure banned nuclear and missile components. They’re not following the “spirit” of the agreement either. In fact, Iran never signed the agreement, which isn’t legally binding. New documents showing how Iran could rapidly expand its nuclear weapons program within a decade, including a special carve out for some nuclear facilities and nuclear stockpile that were not in line with the parameters of the deal. They were exempted.
And these are the people we gave $1.7 billion.
Yesterday, Circa reported that we actually forked over $1.3 billion more after our citizens were released in what essentially was a ransom payment, no matter how hard the Obama administration tries to either deny it, or say it was used as leverage. Remember these are the folks who called the Russian invasion of Ukraine an “uncontested arrival.”
The Wall Street Journal and The Associated Press also reported on the new figures this morning.
The Obama administration followed up a planeload of $400 million in cash sent to Iran in January with two more such shipments in the next 19 days, totaling another $1.3 billion, according to congressional officials briefed by the U.S. State, Treasury and Justice departments.
The cash payments—made in Swiss francs, euros and other currencies—settled a decades-old dispute over a failed arms deal dating back to 1979. U.S. officials have acknowledged the payment of the first $400 million coincided with Iran’s release of American prisoners and was used as leverage to ensure they were flown out of Tehran’s Mehrabad on the morning of Jan. 17.
The Obama administration briefed lawmakers on Tuesday, telling them that two further portions of the $1.3 billion were transferred though Europe on Jan. 22 and Feb. 5. The payment “flowed in the same manner” as the original $400 million that an Iranian cargo plane picked up in Geneva, Switzerland, according to a congressional aide who took part in the briefing.
The $400 million was converted into non-U.S. currencies by the Swiss and Dutch central banks, according to U.S. and European officials.
The Treasury Department confirmed late Tuesday that the subsequent payments were also made in cash.
The Obama administration is acknowledging its transfer of $1.7 billion to Iran earlier this year was made entirely in cash, using non-U.S. currency, as Republican critics of the transaction continued to denounce the payments.
Treasury Department spokeswoman Dawn Selak said in a statement late Tuesday that the cash payments were necessary because of the "effectiveness of U.S. and international sanctions," which isolated Iran from the international finance system.
The $1.7 billion was the settlement of a decades-old arbitration claim between the U.S. and Iran. An initial $400 million of euros, Swiss francs and other foreign currency was delivered on pallets Jan. 17, the same day Tehran agreed to release four American prisoners.
The Obama administration had claimed the events were separate, but recently acknowledged the cash was used as leverage until the Americans were allowed to leave Iran.
In all, we shouldn’t be shocked if some of these funds are used to fund terrorist activities. This administration plays linguistic gymnastics to avoid calling things what they are to avoid looking like clowns on the world stage (too late), while either obfuscating the full details about critical aspects of American foreign policy regarding this Iran deal and the ransom. To compound this incompetence, these are dealings with a country that should not be trusted in any way, shape, or form.
We can’t say that every dollar won’t go to terrorism? Sleep well, America.