Image: Persian Immortals
, as portrayed during the 2,500-year celebrations of Persia. Public domain.
Brian Hook, in re: Iran, Venezuela, Natanz. Will the US enforce the embargo no matter what? On Oct 18 the arms embargo expires, one of many failings of the Iran deal, allowing fighter jets, subs, missiles up to 300 km, leading to a regional arms growth. Saudi, UAE, Bahrain, Israel, are the frontline. All four strongly favor a continuation of the embargo; Supreme Leader again called on [death for Jews]. Committed to the destruction of the US and Israel. Reportedly $400 bil in Chinese investment in Iran for 25 years; but the sum is highly doubtful. Iranian people are suspicious of a shadowy deal inked by a tyrannical regime. Ayatollahs urgently need capital, even while China has well over a million Uyghur Muslim in concentration camps.
I share an office wall with Elliot Abrams on the seventh floor. Ran shipping oil to Venezuela; two pariah states, both run by brute fore and having economies in the tank. Five ships did make it to Caracas from Iran, but four did not. We’re driving up costs and disrupting. Arrest of Saab: a Justice Dept matter. We’re seeing greater domestic unrest in Iran. Now 236,000 Iranian rials to a dollar. Libya, Iran and Venezuela are the three at the bottom of the IMF list of economies. Iran’s kleptocracy; world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism and anti-Semitism. Azerbaijani protestors after the Armenian clashes. Water cannon and tear gas; deaths. Possibilities of military options anent Iran: President Trump is committee to Iran’s never getting a nuclear weapon. (What would that look like? North Korea.) Choice of guns on Damascus or butter in Iran. No country in the world wants Iran to have a nuclear weapon.
Brian Hook is the U.S. Special Representative for Iran and Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary of State. Prior to this appointment, he served as Director of the Policy Planning Staff from 2017–2018. From 2009–2017, he managed an international strategic consulting firm based in Washington, DC. Mr. Hook held a number of senior positions in the Bush Administration, including Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations; Senior Advisor to the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations; Special Assistant to the President for Policy in the White House Chief of Staff’s office; and Counsel, Office of Legal Policy, at the Justice Department.
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