Friday, December 02, 2011
Dem Senator Lashes out at Obama's Iran policy: VideoBite
While this video is longer than I usually post, this is stunning.
Democrat Senator Robert Menendez (NJ) lashes out at Obama's Iran policy
Senate Votes Unanimously to Sanction Iran Central Bank -Siobhan Hughes
The U.S. Senate on Thursday voted 100-0 to adopt economic sanctions against Iran's central bank similar to those announced by the UK to block Iran's entire banking sector from the UK financial system. The vote came in spite of warnings from the Obama administration that the sanctions would alienate allies and drive up oil prices.
Lawmakers say the Obama administration needs to show a greater sense of urgency in the wake of reports from the UN nuclear agency that Iran has been developing technologies needed to produce a nuclear weapon. Lawmakers also point to U.S. allegations that Iran was plotting to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington.
(Dow Jones-Wall Street Journal)
Administration Tries to Water Down Iran Sanctions -Josh Rogin
President Obama's administration is working behind the scenes to water down congressional language that would impose crippling sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran (CBI). The administration sent to Congress this week a list of requested changes to the sanctions language found in the Senate's version of the defense authorization bill, which was passed last week. Those sanctions, which would punish any bank that does business with the CBI, were part of an amendment authored by Sens. Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) that passed over the administration's objections by a vote of 100 to 0.
The administration wants to delay the implementation of sanctions not related to oil purchases from 60 to 180 days, and wants to water down the severity of sanctions measures if and when they are put into effect.
House-Senate Panel Agrees on New Sanctions on Iran
Leaders of a U.S. House and Senate negotiating panel said they had agreed to compromise legislation imposing new sanctions that target Iran's central bank, despite Obama administration misgivings over the measure. Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.) said the bill was probably "96 percent" the same as legislation that passed the Senate last week. It would penalize foreign financial institutions that do business with Iran's central bank, the main conduit for its oil revenues.