Normal Conversation: John Kerry Defends His (Cough* Treasonous Cough*) Shadow Diplomacy With Iran

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Posted: May 09, 2018 1:21 PM
Normal Conversation: John Kerry Defends His (Cough* Treasonous Cough*) Shadow Diplomacy With Iran

John Kerry has failed. As Tim wrote, he’s been working for weeks trying to preserve the Iran Deal, meeting with Iran’s foreign minister at the United Nations, chatting with French President Emmanuel Macron, the German president, and European Union officials. Is this treason? No, or at least I hope not. I’m just going by the rules that Left now has when it comes to meeting foreigners in light of the Russian collusion clown show that has dominated the political scene since Donald Trump won the 2016 election. If you met with the Russian ambassador, as many government officials and members of Congress do, it’s collusion. You drink Stoli vodka; it’s collusion. You enjoy a pickled food; that’s certainly treasonous. Also, “shadow diplomacy” is quite the sanitized phrase to explain what Kerry has been doing, which one could argue is collusion between Iran and members of the European Union (via Boston Globe):

John Kerry’s bid to save one of his most significant accomplishments as secretary of state took him to New York on a Sunday afternoon two weeks ago, where, more than a year after he left office, he engaged in some unusual shadow diplomacy with a top-ranking Iranian official.

He sat down at the United Nations with Foreign Minister Javad Zarif to discuss ways of preserving the pact limiting Iran’s nuclear weapons program. It was the second time in about two months that the two had met to strategize over salvaging a deal they spent years negotiating during the Obama administration, according to a person briefed on the meetings.

With the Iran deal facing its gravest threat since it was signed in 2015, Kerry has been on an aggressive yet stealthy mission to preserve it, using his deep lists of contacts gleaned during his time as the top US diplomat to try to apply pressure on the Trump administration from the outside. President Trump, who has consistently criticized the pact and campaigned in 2016 on scuttling it, faces a May 12 deadline to decide whether to continue abiding by its terms.

Kerry also met last month with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, and he’s been on the phone with top European Union official Federica Mogherini, according to the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to reveal the private meetings. Kerry has also met with French President Emmanuel Macron in both Paris and New York, conversing over the details of sanctions and regional nuclear threats in both French and English.

The rare moves by a former secretary of state highlight the stakes for Kerry personally, as well as for other Obama-era diplomats who are dismayed by what they see as Trump’s disruptive approach to diplomacy, and who view the Iran nuclear deal as a factor for stability in the Middle East and for global nuclear nonproliferation. 

[…]

Kerry is coordinating his push with a group of officials who were his top advisers at the State Department, and who helped craft and negotiate the Iran deal in the first place. The group, called Diplomacy Works, has an advisory council that includes lead Iran-deal negotiator Wendy Sherman, former State Department chief of staff Jon Finer, and former spokeswoman Jen Psaki.

Keep in mind, there is (still) zero evidence that the Trump camp colluded with the Kremlin to tilt the 2016 election. Over a year of investigating has yielded nothing, only Paul Manafort not paying his taxes for work he did as an adviser, which really wasn’t a shocker and the indictments of some Russians who ran a troll farm through social media, peddling the most outrageous memes that probably influenced…zero voters during the 2016 election. Still, Kerry says he did nothing wrong. He was interviewed by MSNBC’s Nicole Wallace yesterday, who asked him if he would like to respond to the allegations of hypocrisy since Kerry criticizes the Trump transition team’s dabbling in Israeli policy (via NTK Network):   

There’s none whatsoever, none whatsoever,” Kerry said. “My conversations with these people are the normal conversations that I assure every former secretary of state has.”

“These are normal conversations, and all I did was suggest to them, ‘Look, you guys really ought to keep the agreement,'” Kerry said.

Yeah, not everyone is in agreement with that, Johnny. Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT), who was interviewed by Hallie Jackson, said Kerry’s conduct was inappropriate and troubling if true. He did not think it was proper for former government officials to do side diplomacy. That’s quite a muted response to when Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) and 46 other U.S. Senators sent a letter to Iran in 2015, where they plainly and correctly said that this agreement could be revoked by the next president—and it has. Cotton was accused of treason for this letter, so I’m just going by the Left’s standard here. That’s all. I know it’s not wise to give into liberal arguments, but in this case, as with most of their narratives, it’s come home to bite them in the a**. Kerry is a colluder and a failed diplomat.