Diplomacy is a concept lost on Rep. Ed Royce

President Barack Obama talks with Secretary of State John Kerry, National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice, and Phil Gordon, White House Coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa, and the Gulf Region, left, in the Oval Office, Nov. 22, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama talks with Secretary of State John Kerry, National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice, and Phil Gordon, White House Coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa, and the Gulf Region, left, in the Oval Office, Nov. 22, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

The agreement reached this past weekend between the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, and Iran sets a six month time-table and a stepping stone towards a peaceful resolution of the conflict over Iran’s uranium enrichment program. President Obama addressed the agreement late Saturday night saying:

While today’s announcement is just a first step, it achieves a great deal.  For the first time in nearly a decade, we have halted the progress of the Iranian nuclear program, and key parts of the program will be rolled back.  Iran has committed to halting certain levels of enrichment and neutralizing part of its stockpiles.  Iran cannot use its next-generation centrifuges, which are used for enriching uranium.  Iran cannot install or start up new centrifuges, and its production of centrifuges will be limited.  Iran will halt work at its plutonium reactor.  And new inspections will provide extensive access to Iran’s nuclear facilities and allow the international community to verify whether Iran is keeping its commitments.

These are substantial limitations which will help prevent Iran from building a nuclear weapon.  Simply put, they cut off Iran’s most likely paths to a bomb.  Meanwhile, this first step will create time and space over the next six months for more negotiations to fully address our comprehensive concerns about the Iranian program.  And because of this agreement, Iran cannot use negotiations as cover to advance its program.

But the Orange County Register reports that Congressman Ed Royce, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, does not think it’s time to negotiate. “We have to be able to hold their feet to the fire over this deal,” Royce said on CNN’s State of the Union. “We need to ratchet up those sanctions until Iran is willing to agree to give up its right to enrich, to give up its nuclear program. Until they do that they’re still on the road to have the capability for undetectable nuclear weapons breakout and that’s the bottom line,” he said.

Congressman Ed Royce (CA-39)

Congressman Ed Royce (CA-39)

It must be frustrating for partisan Republicans like Royce to see President Obama’s administration make progress in addressing international relations through negotiation rather than war. Royce is apparently still living in the President George W. Bush years of “bomb first, negotiate later.” This historic agreement is not the end of Iran’s nuclear program. It is the beginning steps of a dialogue with a nation that the international community has sanctioned into the economic equivalent of the Dark Ages. Sanctions have worked, and Iran has come to the table under new leadership.

After 34 years of mistrust between Iran and the west, President Obama has seized the opportunity provided by a change Iranian leadership ending hostile rhetoric. We have tried “peace” through the barrel of the gun and that has proven in effective and expensive. Now we have the opportunity to find peace and reconciliation through dialogue. It will not be easy to bridge the decades of mistrust, and the current agreement could still fall apart if extremists in Iran or the United States get their way. But President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have taken the opportunity to try a diplomatic solution to thwart the threat of Iranian nuclear weapons capability.

  4 comments for “Diplomacy is a concept lost on Rep. Ed Royce

  1. Robert Lauten
    November 25, 2013 at 10:43 am

    Thomas: The coming betrayal of Israel in form of nuclear deal with Iran
    Posted: November 16, 2013 – 12:16am

    “Unlike North Korea, an officially atheist state, Iranian mullahs have repeatedly said they have a religious duty to annihilate Israel, not to mention America. How do secular diplomats negotiate with people who, in their minds, would be violating “Allah’s will” by making deals with the “great Satan”?
    While the negotiations between Secretary of State John Kerry and Iran were taking place in Geneva, writes Ynetnews.com, “…the Iranian government sent a different message with a broadcast on state television of a simulated missile attack on Israel.” How much more evidence of Iran’s intentions and ultimate objective are needed?”
    “Iran is playing for time, and it appears the United States is willing to give it to them.”

    Full article at:
    http://lubbockonline.com/editorial-columnists/2013-11-16/thomas-coming-betrayal-israel-form-nuclear-deal-iran#.UpOWj6yjdCM

  2. Greg Diamond
    November 25, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Nice article! My only complaint is in the photo caption: Royce is now in CA-39, not CA-40.

    Royce is a sad sack. He has nutty-envy of Dana Rohrabacher and Darrell Issa.

    • November 26, 2013 at 7:14 am

      Thanks Greg. I used a file photo and forgot to check the caption.

  3. RHackett
    November 26, 2013 at 8:42 am

    If Obama was sending arms to Iran like Reagan, I’m sure Royce would be telling us how Obama was a foreign policy wiz.

    Ahhhh….who am I kidding? Royce would still be bellyaching about something.

    I’m betting that on the the first Wednesday of November in even numbered years, Ed wakes up and says, “I fooled them again.”

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