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Iran is much in the news lately.  Sen. Rand Paul (R-sort of, representing himself) recently proclaimed he had been appointed to negotiate with Iran. President Trump said, “not so fast there Speed…”

It’s hard to keep up.  The most recent Iranian outrage–about which we’re aware–was their seizure of a British flagged tanker.   They tried to do the same a short time earlier, but a British warship was close enough to scare them off.  Not this time.  They are using it to secure the release of an Iranian tanker seized by the British about a month ago.  Taking hostages is a common Iranian tactic.

Remember this?  History.com does:

On November 4, 1979, a group of Iranian students stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, taking more than 60 American hostages. The immediate cause of this action was President Jimmy Carter’s decision to allow Iran’s deposed Shah, a pro-Western autocrat who had been expelled from his country some months before, to come to the United States for cancer treatment. However, the hostage-taking was about more than the Shah’s medical care: it was a dramatic way for the student revolutionaries to declare a break with Iran’s past and an end to American interference in its affairs. It was also a way to raise the intra- and international profile of the revolution’s leader, the anti-American cleric Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. The students set their hostages free on January 21, 1981, 444 days after the crisis began and just hours after President Ronald Reagan delivered his inaugural address. Many historians believe that hostage crisis cost Jimmy Carter a second term as president.

 What many forget is that Iran declared war on America in 1973, and they have been pursuing that war since, even as we have mostly ignored it.  They killed more than 600 Americans in Iraq, and nearly 1000 more around the world since 1973. Including:

On Oct. 23, 1983, a truck bomb rocked the headquarters of a Marine peacekeeping force in Beirut, killing 220 Marines, 18 sailors and three soldiers.

It was the largest single-day loss of life for the Corps since the World War II battle on the island of Iwo Jima.

America has, for the most part, done little to deter Iran, but not always,as Powerline reports:

[The NYT’s Brett] Stephens reminds us that, in 1988, a U.S. frigate was badly damaged when it hit an Iranian naval mine while sailing in the Persian Gulf. Four days later, the U.S. Navy destroyed half the Iranian fleet in a matter of hours. Iran did not molest the Navy or international shipping for many years thereafter.

President Trump has said he will never allow Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon. So has Israel. Between us, I suspect–I hope–that will turn out to be true, despite the best efforts of Barack Obama.  It’s always alarming to hear various pundits and politicians speak as though Iran ever intended to do anything but destroy the objects of its hatred: Israel and America.  Iran has never kept its word.

So as a reminder of who we’re dealing with, gentle readers, I thought I’d revisit portions of an article from 2014: Iran: The Art Of Surrender.  It’s an updated reminder of just who the Iranians are, so come with me now, back to 2014…

On the Sunday, November 23rd edition of Fox News Sunday, I watched, aghast, as George Will, who ought to know better, said it’s no big deal for the Iranians to obtain nuclear weapons. Will observed that we contained the Soviet Union for decades, we can do the same with the Iranians. There is one deadly flaw in this reasoning: the Soviets were not an apocalyptic death cult that swore to kill its enemies on a daily basis.

Who are the Iranians? On one hand, Iran is comprised of the youngest, most educated population in the Middle East. Most are friendly toward America, are generally pro-western, oppose their government and are not jihadists. Unfortunately, the Iranian leaders, who routinely imprison, torture and murder their own people, are none of these things. Iran is acknowledged–even by the Obama government–as the primary, foremost state sponsor of terror in the world. Iran operatives and proxies bathe their hands in rivers of American blood and continue to kill Americans around the world.

To understand Iran and Iranians, it will be useful to read Azar Nafisi’s memoir Reading Lolita In Tehran.  Iranians are foremost, Persians,not Arabs, but secondarily, Shi’ite Muslims. Understanding this is the key to understanding why what President Obama is doing in sending the execrable John Kerry to negotiate a “deal” with the Iranians is no different than guaranteeing that the Iranians will not only obtain nuclear weapons, but use them on Israel and America. Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch explains: 

If that [an Iranian nuclear attack] happens, it will also be because of the Shi’ite belief in the return of the Twelfth Imam. According to Islamic tradition, the dispute between the majority Sunnis and the Shiat Ali (Party of Ali) began upon the death of Muhammad in 632. The Sunnis contended that the prophet of Islam had made no provision for a successor as political, military, and spiritual leader of the Muslim community, and that therefore the Muslims should choose the best man among them as their leader. The nascent Party of Ali, on the contrary, claimed that Muhammad had designated his son-in-law Ali ibn Abi Talib as his successor, and that the successor of Muhammad had to be a member of the prophet’s household.

What’s more, far from being a mere functionary, this successor would bear some of Muhammad’s prophetic spirit, as well as infallibility in deciding disputed questions. Ali was finally chosen as the fourth caliph in 656, but in 661 was assassinated. Hassan, his eldest son (and successor, as far as the Shi’ites are concerned), was murdered in 670 on the orders of the Sunni caliph Muawiya. Then the Sunni/Shi’ite split became definitive and permanent when Ali’s younger son, Husayn, was killed in the Battle of Karbala in 680.

What, in a world of iPhones, government handouts, reality television and hope and change does this have to do with anything? Read on:

credit: sodahead.com

The Shi’ites were, thus, founded in loss and defeat, and these became the ongoing distinguishing features of Shi’ite history and piety. After the beheading of Husayn, the Shi’ites continued a succession of Imams, members of Muhammad’s household and his prophetic heirs. Each one in turn, over two centuries, was poisoned on orders of the Sunni caliph. According to the traditions of Twelver Shi’ism, the official religion of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the twelfth of these Imams, a boy of five years old, disappeared under mysterious and disputed circumstances in the year 874 – but remained alive. After his disappearance, he communicated to the world through four agents, the last of whom died in 941. At that point the Twelfth Imam went silent, entering the period of ‘Great Occultation.’

In his last communiqué to the world, via one of these messengers in 941, this mysterious figure consoled his followers with prophecies regarding his eventual reappearance. The circumstances of that reappearance could, in the hands of Iran’s mad mullahs, visit upon the world calamities of a scale never before seen. And Israel and America will bear the brunt.

‘Hearts,’ warned Mohammad al-Mahdi, the Twelfth Imam, in his last message, ‘will become inaccessible to compassion. The earth will be filled with tyranny and violence.’ He was speaking of the time of his reappearance, explaining that he would only come back to the world when the evil that Muslims were suffering was at its absolute apex. In this he echoed a Shi’ite tradition of the words of the prophet of Islam himself, Muhammad, who prophesied that the Twelfth Imam would be ‘the Resurrector’ and explained: ‘He will fill the world with peace and justice as today it is filled with violence and tyranny.

What does this have to do with us? By all means, read the rest of Spencer’s commentary. In brief, it is as simple as it is horrifying. The Iranian leadership awaits the return of the Twelfth Imam, who will bring peace and justice by conquering the world for Islam.

Just as Communists are Socialists in a hurry, Twelvers are Islamists in a hurry. Islam, at its core, is a political system with religious components. Rather than being a “religion of peace,” as various American presidents and politicians have witlessly proclaimed, it is a cult of death, revenge and the lust for power.

In order to bring the “oppression–which they interpret as being any resistance to Islam–of Muslims to its zenith, the Iranian mullahs are more than willing to fill with world with “violence and tyranny” by making nuclear strikes on Israel and America. They understand that this would bring retaliatory strikes from Israel, and possibly from America. Under Barack Obama, probably even under Hillary Clinton, nuclear retaliation is far from a sure thing. The Iranians, expert horse traders and con men, are betting on this. Actually, they’re more than betting on it. Edward Olshaker reports: 

…in a speech urging the Muslim world to destroy Israel, Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani issued a nuclear threat, sadistically taunting that ‘application of an atomic bomb would not leave any thing in Israel, but the same thing would just produce damages in the Muslim world.

This is a rational, strategically sound calculation made by what Americans other than Barack Obama and John Kerry would consider a madman. It accurately portrays the views and intentions of the Iranian leadership. These are people that have killed millions of Muslims, and who kill their own Muslim people every day. They will not hesitate to kill tens of millions of Jews and Americans, and will welcome nuclear retaliation that will kill tens of millions of Muslims, content in the knowledge that Islam will not only survive, but they will have hastened the return of the Twelfth Imam and Islamist domination of the world. 

Of course, the Obama Administration, the most transparent administration in history, would never lie to the American public. At his 2014 State of the Union Speech, Mr. Obama displayed the kind of toughness toward Iran for which he has become internationally famous. I wrote at the time:

* DID YOU KNOW THAT MR. OBAMA HAS HALTED THE PROGRESS OF IRAN’S NUCLEAR PROGRAM AND ‘ROLLED IT BACK’?  Neither do the Iranians who only last week bragged that Mr. Obama’s secret agreement with Iran doesn’t do anything to hinder their nuclear ambitions and progress.  Even the Democrats couldn’t bring themselves to applaud that dangerous lie, a lie that will come to blow up in their–and our–faces.

* DID YOU KNOW THAT IRAN IS NOT BUILDING NUCLEAR WEAPONS?  Mr. Obama said it, so it must be true.  Do the Iranians know this? 

* Mr. Obama is going to make sure that Iran won’t build a nuclear weapon, you know, the nuclear weapon they are not building?  And he’s going to do it without the risk of war.  This–not keeping Iran from getting nucs, but never going to war against Iran for any imaginable reason–is probably one of the few true things Mr. Obama said all night.  Oh, he did promise to impose sanctions if his complete lifting of sanctions and giving the Iranians everything they want doesn’t work.  Uh, won’t that be a little late, as they will, by then, already have multiple nuclear weapons, the nuclear weapons they’re not building?  No doubt.  It’s the very definition of ‘Smart Diplomacy.

Final Thoughts (072719):

As an Islamist theocracy, Iranians believe–because the Koran tells them explicitly–that lying to infidels is not only right, but a religious duty in the furtherance of their Islamist death cult. How can anyone negotiate with a “partner” whose most holy and immutable beliefs not only allow, but require them to lie?  Hence, diplomacy with Islamists is always a fool’s errand.

There is no such thing as a moderate Islamist.  Islamists inhabit the most violent, destructive regions of a religion that recognizes no such thing as Earthly authority.  There is no separation of church and state in Islam, which is the church and the state.  “Moderates” are not in positions of power in any Islamist state.  They are either silent or dead, and anyone masquerading as a moderate is merely lying to the infidels to further the Jihad.

Despite what they say, Iran is continually working toward nuclear weapons.  It is not a matter of whether we go to war with Iran, but when, and how.  Leftists, and some Republicans, tell us there is either peace with Iran, or outright war.  This is nonsense.

We possess the military means to obliterate Iran’s means of making war at little danger to our military.  We need not occupy Iran to so damage their Islamist regime as to make it possible for the Iranian people to depose them.

But if we attack them, it will make them mad and they’ll sponsor terrorist attacks!  Oh?  And this would be new because…?

President Trump showed great restraint in not punishing Iran for shooting down one of our drones in International waters.  Shortly thereafter, we shot down one of theirs. The Mullahs are religious fanatics, but they’re not stupid.  They know we could destroy them at will, so they push and provoke as far as they can. We can only hope that in Donald Trump, we finally have a President that knows them for who they are, and who is willing to do what is necessary to end the threat they represent once and for all.

Your thoughts, gentle readers?