Krauthammer: Iranians Know Obama Won't Impose Sanctions, They Sense His "Weakness And Desperation"


CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: What he said is really remarkable. He says nobody doubts that I have the ability to get new sanctions. True. But nobody in the world believes that he has the willingness to get mew sanctions. That's the reason why Congress wants to pass them to be triggered, not to be imposed now, but to be triggered if the negotiations don't succeed so it gives the U.S. leverage over Iran.

Obama says don't worry if the negotiations don't succeed. I can get sanctions. But he has shown right through the years in these negotiations that he has resisted sanctions at every turn. The initial set of sanctions that really weaken the regime and hurt the economy and cut the value of the rial in half that brought Iran to the table, Obama resisted tooth and nail. Congress had to pass them over his objection and then he starts these interim negotiations starting by relaxing the sanctions which is a disincentive for Iran to go ahead and negotiate and says if this doesn't succeed in the six month limit we will or we can reimpose new sanctions. He doesn't do it. Instead he extends negotiations. It runs out again and he extends it a second time. Nobody including the Iranians has any faith in the fact that he will actually impose sanctions. The Iranians know that and that's why they understand he's negotiating out of weakness and desperation.

BRET BAIER: On the first go through, Charles, the president said we haven't taken anything off the table. If these negotiations fail -- he is very forceful. Second time around our former colleague, Major Garrett, asked wait a second does this mean a war-footing happens if the negotiations fail? And he said no, no let me be clear, that's not the case.

KRAUTHAMMER: Well, he is telling the Iranians I am inserting no leverage over you. Everything is off the table. I am trying like hell to get an agreement that you will support and that I can sell as a fig leaf. Look at his success with negotiations with the Russian reset and look at how much he got out of Castro by normalizing. This is a guy who doesn't understand or believe in leverage and the results have reflected exactly that.

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