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WH: Iran payment a ‘tough diplomatic strategy’ — State Dept: Hey, if you go to Iran, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll get taken hostage

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By Doug Powers  •  August 22, 2016 08:08 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

If the Obama White House gets any “tougher” on Iran they’ll be the richest nation in the world but at least we’ll have all our couple million hostages back:

White House spokesman Josh Earnest defended the $400 million payment to Iran that was contingent on the release of four American prisoners as emblematic of President Obama’s “tough diplomatic strategy” on Monday.

The State Department acknowledged last week that the January payment, which was made in cash on an unmarked cargo plane, was in fact conditional on the release of the prisoners being held in Iran. Obama administration officials said it was a deft way to resolve an old debt stemming from a 1970s arms deal and get back American hostages, while critics charged it was effectively a ransom payment.
[…]
“All of this was accomplished without a single shot being fired,” he said. “All of this was accomplished without U.S. troops being deployed, and it’s an indication of how effective the president’s tough diplomatic strategy has proved to be.”

Roll tape on the WeaselTron™:

Hopefully before he leaves office Obama uses a similarly “tough diplomatic strategy” on me — I could use the cash.

There are those who have said the payment to Iran contingent upon hostage release will only encourage the regime to take more hostages. The Obama administration disagrees so much with that assessment that Monday the State Department decreased the threat level to US citizens in that country warned of an increased risk to Americans in Iran of being taken hostage:

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to Iran. This replaces the Travel Warning for Iran dated March 14, 2016, to reiterate and highlight the risk of arrest and detention of U.S. citizens, particularly dual national Iranian-Americans. Foreigners, in particular dual nationals of Iran and Western countries including the United States, continue to be detained or prevented from leaving Iran. U.S. citizens traveling to Iran should very carefully weigh the risks of travel and consider postponing their travel. U.S. citizens residing in Iran should closely follow media reports, monitor local conditions, and evaluate the risks of remaining in the country.

Iranian authorities continue to unjustly detain and imprison U.S. citizens, particularly Iranian-Americans, including students, journalists, business travelers, and academics, on charges including espionage and posing a threat to national security. Iranian authorities have also prevented the departure, in some cases for months, of a number of Iranian-American citizens who traveled to Iran for personal or professional reasons. U.S. citizens traveling to Iran should very carefully weigh the risks of travel and consider postponing their travel. U.S. citizens residing in Iran should closely follow media reports, monitor local conditions, and evaluate the risks of remaining in the country.

Our “deal partner,” ladies & gentlemen.

If you’re traveling in Iran, it might be a good idea to have access to a few hundred million dollars in euros and Swiss francs along with a friend who owns a plane and a sturdy pallet — just in case.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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Categories: Barack Obama, Donald Trump, Media, Media Bias