On Iran, Obama Unwound Carter’s Action

It all started with the Iranian hostages, then the Beirut bombings. President Jimmy Carter gave the order to freeze all accessible Iranian assets including military equipment. And so it was done, but Madeline Albright began to pull the threat on behalf of Iran, and Barack Obama continued to do the same in 2009.

There are countless moving parts here, so it is for sure convoluted so perhaps the bullet points here will help. A calculator may be good too.

  • The Supreme Court decided today in a 6-2 ruling on behalf of the victims to free up close to $2 billion in frozen Iranian assets—held in a New York bank for Iran’s central bank, Bank Markazi—to compensate more than 1,000 victims and family members harmed in terrorism incidents traceable to Iran, including the 1983 bombing of a U.S. Marines barracks in Lebanon.   
  • In 2000, in her speech on Friday, March 17, the U.S. Secretary of State, Mrs. Albright, made reference to the Iranian assets that the United States froze in the aftermath of the hostage crisis in 1979. It always had been that any normalization of relations between these two countries had to consider the unfreezing of the Iranian assets. What was never clear was the size and nature of the assets. In her speech, Mrs. Albright indicated that much of the frozen assets were turned over to Iran after 1981. Yet, she also intimated that there is more that was not turned over. The size of the remaining frozen assets has been one mystery. Their nature and location, too, are not clear. At the time of the freeze, reports indicated that the assets consisted of goods purchased by Iran and not delivered by the suppliers, including military supplies, cash and securities on deposit or in trust with various U.S. banks and financial institutions here and their branches and subsidiaries abroad, stock and bonds of United States issuers, real estate, right to interest, dividend, and distribution, contract rights, and other proprietary interests. Read the rest of the shocking summary here.
  • To dovetail the second bullet point above, today, Daily Beast published an item that explains why the legislation introduced to punish Saudi Arabia for any involvement in the 9/11 attacks on the United States should be avoided as noted by some key officials at the Pentagon. Why you ask, the historical house of the United States is not clean either, which too is further explained in the link of the second bullet item. This is for sure still up for debate, however, there are major indications that during Barack Obama’s trip to Saudi Arabia, he is likely reassuring the KSA he will veto any punishing legislation. 
  • We can fully know at all exactly where or how much Iranian money resides in banks around the world and how is brokering business on behalf of Iran, investing for the rogue country, much less skirting sanctions for them as well. You see even China had/has ownership of $22 billion of Iranian funds mostly due to sanctions and to pay for oil. 
  • In 2009, enter Barack Obama and $2 billion for Iran just to come to the table. WSJ:  ” More than $2 billion allegedly held on behalf of Iran in Citigroup Inc. C 2.43 % accounts were secretly ordered frozen last year by a federal court in Manhattan, in what appears to be the biggest seizure of Iranian assets abroad since the 1979 Islamic revolution.  The legal order, executed 18 months ago by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, is under seal and hasn’t been made public. The court acted in part because of information provided by the U.S. Treasury Department.President Barack Obama has pledged to enact new economic sanctions on Iran at year-end if Tehran doesn’t respond to international calls for negotiations over its nuclear-fuel program. The frozen $2 billion stands at the center of an intensifying legal struggle between Luxembourg’s Clearstream Banking S.A., the holder of the Citibank account, and the families of hundreds of U.S. Marines killed or injured in a 1983 terrorist attack on a Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon. Clearstream is primarily a clearing house for financial trades and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Germany’s Deutsche Börse AG. Luxembourg’s bank secrecy laws have helped it grow into a major European financial center.” More here from the WSJ.  
  • So what about this Clearstream Banking operation you say? Well they were a nefarious operation as well. In 2014, The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today announced a $152 million agreement with Clearstream Banking, S.A. (Clearstream), of Luxembourg, to settle its potential civil liability for apparent violations surrounding Clearstream’s use of its omnibus account with a U.S. financial institution as a conduit to hold securities on behalf of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI). More here from Treasury.   
  • In January 2016, The U.S. State Department announced the government had agreed to pay Iran $1.7 billion to settle a case related to the sale of military equipment prior to the Iranian revolution, according to a statement issued on Sunday.
    Iran had set up a $400 million trust fund for such purchases, which was frozen along with diplomatic relations in 1979. In settling the claim, which had been tied up at the Hague Tribunal since 1981, the U.S. is returning the money in the fund along with “a roughly $1.3 billion compromise on the interest,” the statement said.
  • Wait, there is the other $100 billion: That’s roughly how much the U.S. Treasury Department says Iran stands to recover once sanctions are lifted under the new nuclear deal.

We cant know if there is more, yet no wonder Iran is dancing in the streets and maintains threatening behavior where Obama continues to tell the region, get along with Iran….they are legitimate. Oh….Obama is working on a personal meeting with Rouhani too.

Intense U.S.-Iran negotiations appear to be underway at this time, on various levels. They have included meetings this week in New York between Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif and U.S. Secretary of State Kerry, and an April 14 Washington meeting between Central Bank of Iran governor Valiollah Seif and U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew.[1] According to an April 19 report on the Iranian website Sahamnews.org, which is affiliated with Iran’s Green Movement, President Obama asked to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rohani in two secret letters sent in late March to both Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and President Rohani. According to the report, Obama wrote in the letters that Iran has a limited-time opportunity to cooperate with the U.S. in order to resolve the problems in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen, and promised that if Iran agreed to a meeting between him and Rohani, he would be willing to participate in any conference to this end. The Sahamnews report further stressed that Supreme Leader Khamenei discussed the request with President Rohani, that Rohani said that Iran should accept the request and meet with Obama, and that such a meeting could lead to an end to the crises in the region while increasing Iran’s influence in their resolution. Rohani promised Khamenei that any move would be coordinated with him and reported to him. According to the report, Khamenei agreed with Rohani. The Sahamnews report also emphasized that Khamenei’s recent aggressively anti-U.S. speeches were aimed at maintaining an anti-U.S. atmosphere among the Iranian public, whereas in private meetings he expresses a different position. Courtesy and more from MEMRI here.


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