Obama Sent Laundered Cash to Iran as Americans Were Freed and Got Caught
– Wall Street Journal
Did Obama Pay Cash for Hostages to Iranian kidnappers?
“WASHINGTON—The Obama administration secretly organized an airlift of $400 million worth of cash to Iran that coincided with the January release of four Americans detained in Tehran, according to U.S. and European officials and congressional staff briefed on the operation afterward.
Wooden pallets stacked with euros, Swiss francs and other currencies were flown into Iran on an unmarked cargo plane, according to these officials. The U.S. procured the money from the central banks of the Netherlands and Switzerland, they said.
The money represented the first installment of a $1.7 billion settlement the Obama administration reached with Iran to resolve a decades-old dispute over a failed arms deal signed just before the 1979 fall of Iran’s last monarch, Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.
The $400 million was paid in foreign currency because any transaction with Iran in U.S. dollars is illegal under U.S. law. Sanctions also complicate Tehran’s access to global banks.
“Sometimes the Iranians want cash because it’s so hard for them to access things in the international financial system,” said a senior U.S. official briefed on the January cash delivery. “They know it can take months just to figure out how to wire money from one place to another.”
The Obama administration has refused to disclose how it paid any of the $1.7 billion, despite congressional queries, outside of saying that it wasn’t paid in dollars. Lawmakers have expressed concern that the cash would be used by Iran to fund regional allies, including the Assad regime in Syria and the Lebanese militia Hezbollah, which the U.S. designates as a terrorist organization.”
….Continue reading more @ Wall Street Journal
OBAMA SPENDS 7 MINUTES DODGING ON WHETHER IRAN WILL USE $400 MILLION TO FUND TERRORISM
– NTK Network
“What is your response to critics….that this was a ransom payment…..a payment that was held up for almost four decades was suddenly sent at the exact same time that the American prisoners were released…..and can you assure to the American people that the none of that money went to support terrorism?”
“Ok, the uh……uh, it’s……it’s…it’s been interesting to watch this story surface…”
– CJ gave Pres Obama exactly 89 seconds to answer a pretty straight forward question. He failed. We didn’t need much more.
However, the follow up question should have been, had the president not evaded and dodged:
Did the White House lawyers advise or caution of the risk that this money might fall into the hands of international terrorists since Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism?”
If not, did you pose this question and if not, why not?/CJ
…More @ ntknetwork.com
Guiliani On Obama’s Ransom Payment to Iran for Hostages
– Youtube | Fox Business
“I’d call that money laudering….I’d call that trading with the enemy…” – Rudy Giuliani
U.S. Has Taught Iran a Lesson: Hostage-Taking Pays
If Americans were detained, cash was exchanged, and Americans were released, that looks like a ransom payment, right? Using the razor of Occam.
Those are the facts as reported in extraordinary detail by the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday: The U.S. arranged for the delivery of $400 million worth of cash just as Iran released four U.S. citizens.
Senior Obama administration officials insist this was not a ransom payment. They point out that different teams of experts negotiated the cash payment and the prisoner release. The cash payment was part of a larger $1.7 billion settlement over an arms sale from 1979. The prisoner release was part of a deal that released Iranians from U.S. jails. Hence the White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters on Wednesday that the payment was not a ransom.
There is a reason government officials stick to this convoluted story. U.S. policy for decades has prohibited official ransom payments. As President Barack Obama himself said a little over a year ago in remarks clarifying U.S. policy on hostage-taking: “I am reaffirming that the United States government will not make concessions, such as paying ransom, to terrorist groups holding American hostages.”
And yet, when it comes to Iran at least, ransom payments are standard operating procedure. It goes back to the Reagan administration. In the early 1980s, Hezbollah, an Iranian proxy in Lebanon, had taken several Americans hostage. In 1984, the Reagan administration began what it had hoped was an opening to Iranian moderates (sound familiar?). Eventually, that secret diplomacy turned into a deal to exchange anti-tank missiles from Israel for the release of hostages in Lebanon. The profits from the arms sale later went to fund the Nicaraguan Contras, but that’s another story.
…Continue reading more @ Bloomberg