Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Wednesday, June 06, 2018

After striking an elusive nuclear deal with Iran, the Obama administration found itself in a quandary in early 2016: Iran had been promised access to its long-frozen overseas reserves, including $5.7 billion stuck in an Omani bank. To spend it, Iran wanted to convert the money into U.S. dollars and then euros, but top U.S. officials had repeatedly promised Congress that Iran would never gain access to America's financial system.

Those assurances notwithstanding, the Obama administration secretly issued a license to let Iran sidestep U.S. sanctions for the brief moment required to convert the funds through an American bank, an investigation by Senate Republicans released Wednesday showed.

The plan failed when two U.S. banks refused to participate.

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The report by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations sheds light on the delicate balance the Obama administration sought to strike after the deal, as it worked to ensure Iran received its promised benefits without playing into the hands of the deal's opponents. Amid a tense political climate, Iran hawks in the U.S., Israel and elsewhere argued that the United States was giving far too much to Tehran and that the windfall would be used to fund extremism and other troubling Iranian activity.

The Treasury Department license, issued in February 2016 and never disclosed, would have allowed Iran to convert $5.7 billion it held at Oman's Bank of Muscat from Omani rials into euros by exchanging them first into dollars. If the Omani bank had allowed the exchange without such a license, it would have violated sanctions that bar Iran from transactions that touch the U.S. financial system.

"Yikes," one former Treasury official told colleagues in an email, as described by the report. "It looks like we committed to a whole lot beyond just allowing the immobilized funds to settle out."

The Obama administration approached two U.S. banks to facilitate the conversion, the report said, but both refused, citing the reputational risk of doing business with or for Iran.

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This violates at least four Federal laws: The Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 (CISADA), the National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2012 (NDAA), and the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act of 2012 (IFCA).

All of these laws remained in place when the JCOPA was agreed to, someone is going to have lots of 'splainin to do.

#1 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2018-06-06 05:04 PM | Reply

"The former Obama officials disputed that the momentary access to U.S. banks to convert funds through the dollar constituted "access to the U.S. financial system." What's more, they dismissed the report as another example of a faulty approach to Iran policy by Republicans and by President Donald Trump, who last month withdrew the U.S. from the landmark 2015 nuclear accord.

"They continue to malign the deal in an effort to justify President Trump's unjustifiable decision," said Ned Price, who was Obama's White House National Security Council spokesman, referring to GOP lawmakers."

"Issuing the license was not illegal. Still, it went above and beyond what the Obama administration was required to do under the terms of the nuclear agreement, in which the U.S. and world powers gave Iran billions of dollars in sanctions relief in exchange for curbing its nuclear program."

"The draft involved a general license, a blanket go-ahead that allows all transactions of a certain type, rather than a specific license like the one given to Oman's Bank Muscat, which only covers specific transactions and institutions.

The proposal would have allowed dollars to be used in currency exchanges provided that no Iranian banks, no Iranian rials and no sanctioned Iranian individuals or businesses were involved, and that the transaction did not begin or end in U.S. dollars.

Obama administration officials at the time assured concerned lawmakers that a general license wouldn't be coming. But the report from the Republican members of the Senate panel showed that a draft of the license was indeed prepared, though it was never published.

And when questioned by lawmakers about the possibility of granting Iran any kind of access to the U.S. financial system, Obama-era officials never volunteered that the specific license for Bank Muscat in Oman had been issued two months earlier.

According to the report, Iran is believed to have found other ways to access its money, possibly by exchanging it in smaller quantities through another currency."

lol, RoNixon continues to earn his retainer by posting lame whataboutObamaisms.

No one is going to buy this as any more than another of the Trump Campaigns Deflection A Day program.

SpyGate briefings finally have even Repub leaders siding against Trump's efforts to cloud the issues, this little piece of nothing will also be seen for what it is, "an investigation by Senate Republicans".

#2 | Posted by Corky at 2018-06-06 05:24 PM | Reply

#2

It's called "news" Corky...deal with it.

#3 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2018-06-06 05:42 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"news"

It's Deflectionary "news", Spanky. Brought to us by the Republican Trump Deflection Team that pays your bills. Deal with it.

And as the article notes, "Issuing the license was not illegal.". Not to mention that it was never used.

#4 | Posted by Corky at 2018-06-06 05:55 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

I am much more concerned that we have let Humpy gain access to America's financial system and so he can launder his rubles.

#5 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-06-06 06:01 PM | Reply

Brought to us by the Republican Trump Deflection Team that pays your bills. Deal with it.

Quick, someone alert the world press that the AP News is part of the "Trump Deflection Team!"

#6 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2018-06-06 06:14 PM | Reply

And as the article notes, "Issuing the license was not illegal.". Not to mention that it was never used.

No, "Ned Price, who was Obama's White House National Security Council spokesman" said it wasn't illegal, obviously scrambling to CYA for someone.

#7 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2018-06-06 06:17 PM | Reply

So a few rogue actors in the government tried to stop the Treasury Department? Fire the rogue actors and imprison them for violating the Logan Act.

The blatant ignoring of the rule of law by GOP officials during the Obama years has destroyed this nation.

#8 | Posted by IndianaJones at 2018-06-06 06:17 PM | Reply

I love how whenever something comes out in the MSM critical of Obama or his administration where AAH can't attack the source, his Pantsuit Deflectomatic goes into overdrive.

#9 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2018-06-06 06:20 PM | Reply

Here we go again

You people have "Trump Derailment Syndrome"!

Now excuse me while I do a Drive-by on OBAMA.

Sincerely Desperate

RighToesCentre

#10 | Posted by ChiefTutMoses at 2018-06-06 06:22 PM | Reply

Jones,

#8 made me chuckle. FF for you.

#11 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-06-06 06:24 PM | Reply

- that the AP News is part of the "Trump Deflection Team!"

More from Deflections Roc Us!

The Sen Repubs did the "investigation", as I pointed out, AP only reported it. My, but you are predictably deceitful.... oh, wait, rwing mouthpiece, never mind.

- No, "Ned Price, who was Obama's White House National Security Council spokesman" said it wasn't illegal,

Your reading compression still sucks loudly. AP said that, not Price.

- something comes out in the MSM

No, still wrong. AP reporting on what a Sen Repube 'investigation' found is not something coming from the MSM.

Did I mention reading comprehension? I think I did. The Trump Campaign should ask for their retainer back... but then, they only hire the best lawyers to Deflect for them.

#12 | Posted by Corky at 2018-06-06 07:42 PM | Reply

they only hire the best lawyers to Deflect for them.

#12 | Posted by Corky

Looks to me like Humpy is totally outgunned and is now just using his lawyers as human shields and speed bumps to slow down Mueller's advance so he can prepare his escape out the secret tunnel.

#13 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-06-06 08:13 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

#13

Yeah, Donnie Douche is scrapping the bottom of the barrel with Rudy G... who said today that Trump is being "framed" by Mueller.

They're trying to get Crisco Christie on board, but if they can't, I'm fully expecting them to offer RightoNixon the job. He's been auditioning around here Trump Deflection threads like these.

#14 | Posted by Corky at 2018-06-06 08:21 PM | Reply

#14

Dorky, my bad in #7, your childlike misuse of quotation marks made it look like he said it.

Keep telling people to look away from any news that doesn't fit your narrative, it really makes you look, well, DRtarded.

#15 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2018-06-06 09:47 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

- childlike misuse of quotation marks

You must mean my proper use of quotation marks to separate quotes from the article that were not contiguous.

Keep telling people to look away from the Orange Douche behind the curtain... to Obama or Clinton or Mueller or some non-existent spy... and the Trump Campaign will keep you on retainer.

#16 | Posted by Corky at 2018-06-06 11:28 PM | Reply

Keep telling people to look away from any news that doesn't fit your narrative, it really makes you look, well, DRtarded.

#15 | Posted by Rightocenter

This "news" is hardly earth shattering.

But, I can see how it triggered a flare-up of your Obama Faux Rage and Derangement Syndrome.

#17 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-06-07 01:57 PM | Reply

More corruption from Obama.

#18 | Posted by sawdust at 2018-06-08 08:30 AM | Reply

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