“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.”
“He shall judge between many peoples,
And shall arbitrate between
Strong nations far away;
They shall beat their swords in to plowshares,
And their spears in to pruning
Nation shall not lift up sword
neither shall they learn war
The framework for an international agreement to seriously limit the ability of Iran to make or use atomic weapons was agreed to today by six nations, one of them the United States of America. This is a bold step toward peace in a deeply troubled part of our world that already has for a plethora of reasons, war, terror, suffering and death. Struggles for Justice strongly supports the framework agreed to today in the strongest possible terms. We fundamentally value peace over war, compassion over killing, love over hatred, and deep human justice for all humanity.
No one, even this blog, is fooled or naïve enough to think that this means for certain the final agreement has been struck. But there are just too many signs that there is momentum for such a bold agreement to help ensure peace instead of still another huge war in the Middle Eastern region of our world not to be hopeful—even enthusiastic.
Better yet, the President of the United States and his Secretary of State who just happen to be Barack Obama and John Kerry, have made clear in statements today that without a final agreement on all remaining issues there is no agreement. Both of them, particularly the President, today said to the nation that he and future Presidents will not be bound by this agreement to withhold all kinds of pressures and even the military capacity of the United States should the Iranians be found to be cheating on the agreement or not permitting a strict regime of inspections by the signatory parties and the international community’s agencies making such inspections.
The framework in fact does include agreed to points providing for a level of inspection and verification at or greater than those historic agreements with the old Soviet Union, now largely Russia by Presidents Nixon and Reagan. And what the President is yet again on record as saying, there is a clear means of verifying in any final agreement if “core requirements” for an agreement have been met. What President Obama said and has said permits all to measure his fidelity to his previous statements and policy on this important matter.
Presidents who say they are willing to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon can be brutally and properly vilified for not doing what they say they will do. History will judge what Obama and Kerry have accomplished over the past two plus years of hard bargaining.
Should this agreement even delay a military and economic confrontation in the future relations of this nation and the others by even ten years, this alone will cement President Obama’s legacy as being one of our truly great Presidents. Just where future historians like myself, but of another era will place him, cannot be known for years. But the history of such things indicates the President is on the cusp of what might be a great historical accord of use to the entire world.
The war makers of our world—chief among them the opposing political party to the President, will initially tonight give hedged or statesmanlike responses, with perhaps one or two blasting the President as usual. Within 48-72 hours the Fox News machine and right wing radio talkers will be attacking this framework agreement as full of holes, not enough, with the President lying to us as usual. All these things are without any doubt falsehoods. For what motivates them are hate, an unmerited distrust, and a childish lust for power all over the world that leaves diplomacy, peacemaking, and international cooperation in the dust and in blood.
This critique of the critics is not based on a partisan motivation by Struggles for Justice. We are far more concerned with the actual peacemaking process when nations and peoples conflict, and their realization where and when possible, than the common resort to war and violence. All of the world’s great religious faiths, especially Christianity, favor love, peace and brotherhood–sisterhood. Jesus the Christ himself said as he was about to ascend into heaven “love one another.”
Somebody is going to have to demand his coreligionists explain how their straining at the leash of war, and outright hatred of those who are trying to avoid one squares with the holy teachings by the leader of that faith. Watching them dodge, bob and weave away from that, change the subject, or even contradict their professed faith will test if they really believe in that faith and its teachings, instead of employing it to raise the wrath of the faithful against it and what that faith is. God is love and we are taught to emulate Christ or God, and that is NOT war, hate, violence and fear.
The proposed framework agreed to today in Switzerland by all parties leaves almost no room for Iran backing away from the deal or not honoring it. Protecting our people when all avenues to peace have truly been exhausted is not prohibited by the major faiths of the world yet it is far from honored or desired by the truly faithful. For atheists, most of whom abhor war and violence and only desire religions NOT to promote it.
The framework for an agreement to limit Iran’s nuclear capability to make weapons of war with them and use them is a light of peace in a very dark world. Struggles for Justice, and the author, cannot but praise what has been accomplished. For the sacred texts of so many faiths and those who want a moral and peaceful world without it cry for human justice.