And now I shall go on one of my famous rants. This time about the Trump administration’s alleged offer to negotiate with Iran, and Iran’s alleged refusal. english.aawsat.com/home/article/2…
1) We should take this Saudi government propaganda outlet with the same grain of salt that we use for Press TV, RT, et al.
2) If the letters are real, make them public. Let’s compare their language & substance to letters that were sent to Iran by the Obama admin. Based on its words & deeds, the Trump admin deserves zero benefit of the doubt that its alleged offers of diplomacy were made in good faith
3) It is clearly better to address our issues of mutual concern in an atmosphere of more cooperation on the JCPOA, as opposed to in the context of escalation with no JCPOA. Diplomacy 101, folks.
4) If we can't talk to Iran because you’ve abandoned the channels that you’ve inherited, and if there is no trust because you’ve squandered it by leaving the JCPOA and trying to tank Iran’s economy, your alleged “leverage” can't be used.
First we put a thumb in your eye, then we tell you what we want and say, Don't forget, I've got another thumb.” This approach taken by the Trump administration was predicted to fail by everyone with a shred of intellectual honesty.
That is all. You may now return to your regularly schedule programming.

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More from @rezamarashi

15 May
Just got my $1200 stimulus check. Not sure how many pounds of gojeh sabz this will buy, but we’re about to find out.
Update: IT’S ABOUT TO GO DOWN.
I'm more gojeh sabz than man now and yeah I go with salt over plain sometimes why not nobody owns me
Read 4 tweets
31 Jan
THREAD: And now I shall share a funny story that about the first meeting between Trump and Mahmoud Abbas, in 2017.
Apparently Abbas charmed The Donald. Left quite an impression on him. Trump was thus determined to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and secure "The Deal of the Century."
After his meeting with Abbas wraps up, Trump tells his senior advisors that he wants the problem solved. He then asks his staff why we're giving Israel so much money if Israel is ignoring our interests (!)
Read 8 tweets
6 Jan
THREAD: Over the past few days, I've spoken extensively with career U.S. government officials as they've worked around the clock to try and mitigate the damage from Trump's ineptitude on Iran. With their permission, I'm sharing a small taste from our lengthy conversations. Enjoy.
"We have no functional national security decision-making process in place. We have no plan for what comes next. They are woefully unprepared for what's about to pop off, and they're too stupid to realize it. People here are freaking out, and rightfully so."
"We're still trying to dig out from underneath the last war of choice, and now they're trying to start a new one. I finally cracked open the bottle of scotch you gave me that I've been keeping stashed away in my desk drawer."
Read 17 tweets
4 Jan
And now I shall go on one of my famous rants. This time about Trump's latest round of ineptitude on Iran. I haven't done this for a while, so bear with me as muscle memory kicks in. Sit back and relax. Put on your favorite tracksuit. Maybe treat yourself to cup of herbal tea.
There is a more telling but less understood dynamic driving Trump administration’s strategic incoherence on Iran: Personal grudges.
Trump’s hostility toward Iran is largely driven by his gut. His impulse to try to be the anti-Obama is well documented, and that has translated into neither a policy nor a strategy, but rather a series of actions carried out in an effort to simply not be Barack Obama.
Read 20 tweets
31 May 18
European Parliament overwhelmingly passes new resolution on Saudi Arabia. Deeply critical of MBS, Saudi role in the Middle East, and its treatment of women. Demands targeted sanctions and UN Special Rapp on Human Rights for Saudi. 525 votes in favor, 29 opposed, 71 abstentions.
All of this despite intense Saudi lobbying to derail it. Saudis tried pressuring Euros to water down the resolution. Pro-Israel lobby groups tried to help the Saudis. They both tried to get some Euro right-wing to do their bidding, but ultimately, they failed. Take notes, America
The fact that a diverse swath of political factions in Europe voted against Saudi Arabia is a noteworthy (and somewhat surprising) outcome. It’s also a strong mandate to EU governments more generally, and Federica Mogherini more specifically.
Read 4 tweets
14 May 18
And now I shall go on one of my famous rants. This time about Trump, Israel, and Iran.
As Israelis celebrate America moving its embassy to Jerusalem, dare I say their victory lap may be a bit premature. Why? That's a terrific question. Thanks for asking.
Do Netanyahu and his kindred spirits WANT the U.S. embassy to relocate to Jerusalem? Obviously yes. Do they NEED it, though? Arguably no. And therein lies the rub: The difference between tactical and strategic victories.
Read 12 tweets

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