Quote of the Day:

So our negotiators know what he’s after, and they know the details of these agreements don’t matter to him in the grand swing of things. This is History, capital H.

Elliott Abrams in the Weekly Standard

Just as President Obama's Cuba policy threw a lifeline to aging dictators named Castro, the Iranian nuclear deal will be a boon to the mullahs who rule Iran.

Whatever else you say about the Cuban and Iranian developments, you can't say that they will promote liberty for the people who live under these opressive regimes. 

That's one of the perplexing thing about the left: it purports to be all about "the people,' and yet time and time again the people are dismissed. Iranian dissidents, struggling under the oppressive Iranian regime, called out for a nod from President Obama at the outset of his first term. He only mentioned the dissidents reluctantly and belatedly. He didn't want to offend the mullahs.

Elliott Abrams writes in the Weekly Standard that President Obama sees regimes rather than people, and that this is one of the main ways in which he differs from his immediate predecessor:

 For Obama and this effort to make History, the Egyptian or Iranian or Cuban people are an obstacle, not the object of the endeavor. That’s the key difference with how Bush saw foreign policy. The Freedom Agenda was ultimately about people, not countries or rulers, and the goal was to empower them.

In his Cuba deal Obama has further empowered the Castros, and in the Iran deal he has further empowered the Ayatollah Khamenei. After all, it isn’t really “Iran” getting to spend the $150 Billion, nor is it the Iranian people; it’s a cash transfer to Khamenei, wholly in his control.

The perversity of this is clear when we realize that in the medium run, the only solution to the problem of Iran is the people of Iran. They appear to loathe the Islamic Republic, and once it is gone Iranian foreign policy will not consist of an effort to support terror and destroy Israel and oppose the United States. This nuclear deal ignores the people of Iran and strengthens their oppressors, just as in Cuba.

As Abrams notes, the deal has brought forth criticism and unease among both Democrats (who will vote for it regardless) and Republicans. You don't have to be a nation builder to experience at least a fleeting sorrow that the United States has used its wanning authority in the Middle East to help build up a vicious regime.

If the fruits of this deal are bad, then history–no, make that History–will not be kind to the president who is responsible. Not that that will greatly comfort the people who live under this repressive government.

Abrams' piece is a definite must-read.