Iran’s FM Zarif has been known to “stretch the truth” or to “lie” in the past but it sems that lately, this tendency is growing.
Here are two examples of his hypocrisy from one interview that should remind us all that Zarif is a great diplomat but sincerety is not one of his best virtues.
Zarif Hypocrisy on Syria
“I think another area of possible disagreement is that some of our friends continue to believe that there is a military solution…I think that’s an illusion. Of course there has to be a military element to this, but it has to be a political solution. And then we need to engage in a comprehensive approach to settle the problem of these extremist groups.”
3 Questions for Mr. Zarif:
- Who are Zarif’s “friends”? Make no mistake, Zarif’s comment was taken as part of his attack on his “friend”, the US. That’s alright because the US and Iran may be friends according to the JCPoA but Tehran and Washington are far from being friends by definition from Zarif’s Supreme Leader, Mr. Ali Khamenei. Moscow, on the other hand, has quickly become Tehran BBFN (Best Friends For Now) and (surprise, surprise), is now the largest military influence in Syria…after Tehran, of course.
- What is the definition of a “military element”? Tehran has backed Assad militarily from day one through its proxy militia, Hezbollah, and introduced Iranian military corps into Syria since 2012. Tehran’s military support includes delivering military supplies, operating military “advisors” including, Qassem Suleimani himself, the famed Qods chief, deploying untold thousands of IRGC troops and Iranian jets…all this to a tune of approximately $10 billion a year. Since Tehran’s military presence hasn’t stopped the Syrian civil war, it obviously wasn’t the “military solution” but it seems to be quite a big “element” even for Tehran.
- Who are “these extremist groups”? The row over the list of terrorist groups in Syria is a snapshot of the difficulty in fighting terrorism. Tehran reacted harshly to the notion that Hezbollah and the IRGC would be considered as “terrorists/extremists” but has no problem in naming all of the Syrian rebel groups as “extremists”. It’s worth remembering that Tehran and Moscow are not really in Syria to beat ISIS but to help Assad beat his enemies which include legitimate Syrian rebels who are calling for his downfall and for free elections.
Zarif Hypocrisy on America
“Unfortunately, there are mixed signals coming from Washington, mostly negative signals, including the visa waiver program restrictions…Now we await for the decision by the administration on how it wants to bring itself into compliance with its obligations under the JCPOA“.
3 Questions for Mr. Zarif:
- What about “mixed signals” from Tehran? Although Zarif tried to present a pro-Western stance since becoming foreign minister, he has repeatedly stated that relations with the US can never be normalized according to Iran’s Islamic Revolution’s ideals, that the US is the main cause for terrorism and extremism in the Middle East, that the US’s efforts to fight ISIS are merely a “show” and that the US has been deceitful in its accusations against Iran which led to the sanctions. It is noteworthy that Zarif even apologized for shaking Obama’s hand…
- What about “negative signals” from Khamenei? Khamenei is not only Iran’s Supreme Leader but, following the signing of the JCPoA, he took over the implementation of the JCPoA and the foreign relations file from Rouhani. Unless Zarif is living on another planet, he is sure to know that Khamenei’s signals to Washington are all “negative” – he prohibited any further negotiations with the US, banned 225 American goods from the Iranian economy and repeatedly justified his paranoid fears of “US Infiltration” and the calls of “Death to America” and “Great Satan”.
- What about Tehran’s “compliance and obligations under the JCPoA”? Whether Zarif wants to admit it or not, Iran’s missile tests are in direct contradiction to UN resolutions that preclude the JCPoA and are therefore an act of non-compliance. Furthermore, although the IAEA probe into Tehran’s past PMD of its nuclear program was buried in order to allow for the implementation of the JCPoA to , the report states that Tehran did not supply all of the required information requested.