Trump/Obama/Iran Crisis: Let The Facts Decide
On Friday, 10th January, we had a major disagreement on our blog’s official WhatsApp group. What transpired? Two Trump supporters in their usual manner decided to blame the previous administration of President Barack Obama for the confrontation and crisis between the Trump’s administration and Tehran. 
Before I continue with the nitty gritty of Friday’s conflict, please permit me to summarize the Iran/Trump crisis in subsequent paragraphs. On Friday, 3rd January, The United States Military killed General Qasem Soleimani in an airstrike on his convoy few meters from the Baghdad International Airport. Few hours later, The United States Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo had an exclusive interview with CNN claiming that ‘the United States had intelligence that Qasem Soleimani was planning multiple attacks against United States interest in the region’ Mike Pompeo (3rd January, 2020).
In subsequent events, The President of Iraq, Barham Salih directed all United States forces to vacate Iraq with immediate effect. Apparently, President Barham Salih was not informed himself before the airstrike that killed the late General, his convoy and tenths of unarmed civilians running to safety was ordered by President Donald Trump.
Iran promised brutal and aggressive retaliation. On Wednesday, 7th of January, Iran attacked two United States military bases in Iraq just few hours after a multi-city burial was held for the late General in Iraq and Iran on the 6th January.
On Thursday, 8th January, The President of the United States, Donald Trump in a televised address noted that no civilian causalities were reported in the airstrike, he also confirmed that there will not be a war with Iran (only new sets of economic sanctions) ‘since Iran appears to be standing down’ and blamed the previous administration of Barack Obama for Iran’s aggression. The President noted that “Iran’s hostility substantially increased after the foolish Iran nuclear deal was signed in 2013. And they were given $150 billion, not to mention $1.8 billion in cash.” President Donald Trump (8th January, 2020)
Before I proceed, I want to thank you for reading to this point. The previous paragraphs were dedicated to summarize the Iran/US crisis since the beginning of the year, 2020.
In the preceding paragraphs, we will look at the facts and figures of the United States’ Iran Nuclear Deal and the monies President Trump falsely claimed were given to Iran by the previous administration headed by former President Barack Obama.
Consequently, I would love to start with an explanation of what the Iran Nuclear Deal is all about. According to information from Wikipedia and the BBC, The Iran Nuclear Deal was a result of 20 months of intense negotiations between Iran, the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (United States, United Kingdom, France, Russia, China) with the addition of Germany and the European Union. An initial agreement titled: The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between the eight parties involved was signed on November, 2013 to kick start the series of events that ultimately led to the denuclearization of Iran.
In layman terms, the United States headed by President Barack Obama and the top five economics and the European Union decided that it is bad for Iran to start building a nuclear bomb, Iran is rich in a mineral resource called Uranium – one of the principal requirements needed to make a nuclear bomb and the world leaders were against it so there were negotiations for Iran to stop and Iran stopped. That negotiation led to a deal called – Iran Nuclear Deal. However, in May 2018, United States President Donald Trump abandoned the landmark deal and in November that year, he reinstated sanctions targeting both Iran and countries that traded with it.
Moving swiftly on, having addressed the Iran Nuclear Deal in full details, it is time to move to the President’s comment on ‘Obama giving monies to Iran.’ First, we need to understand that the Iran Nuclear Deal and the monies President Trump claimed were given to Iran were different and independent events. Linking them together in his speech last week Thursday only shows us how disorganized and misinformed Trump is.
In the 1970s, Iran paid the USD400 million for military equipment that was never delivered because the government was overthrown and diplomatic relations ruptured. After the nuclear deal, the United States and Iran announced they had settled the matter, with the United States agreeing to pay the USD400 million principal along with about USD1.3 billion in interest. The USD400 million was paid in cash and flown to Tehran on a cargo plane. The arrangement provided for the interest to be paid later.
In layman terms, do we all remember that the Abacha Loot has been discovered in major economies in the world? And countries have been reaching out the present administration headed by President Muhammedu Buhari to return such monies. Well, a similar event played out between the former President Barack Obama and the Iranian government which made it possible for Tehran to access all their foreign investments aboard as a consolidation of the success of the Iran Nuclear Deal. Please click here to read more.
Lastly, the two Trump supporters in our WhatsApp group could not provide any reliable proof to back up the false accusation that ‘Obama gave monies to Iran’, they could only refer to the televised address by President Trump. Well, newsflash guys, Trump is one of the most dishonest presidents in United States history. It is believed that Trump gave about 12,000 false and misleading comments less than 1,000 days into his presidency. In a similar vein, we can identify about 6 misleading/false statements in his 10 minutes’ speech on Thursday. President Trump lied about defeating the Islamic States 100%, misled the public about; having the best economy ever in United States history, the monies to Iran, the missiles that hit the United States military bases in Iraq, not needing the oil from the middle east, and America’s military strength and might under his administration. Please click on the link to read the full article about Trump’s lies.
Conclusively, I personally called those two Trump supporters on Saturday to apologize to them for my outburst. No lie, I am a die-hard fan of former President Barack Obama, he his left-handed just like I am and his grass to grace story inspires me a lot. I remember watching his welcoming speech on January 20th 2008 when I was only 17 and falling in love with him immediately. However, we should always ensure that facts and figures backed up with adequate and reliable research form the basis of our discussion. We can do better.
God Bless Us All.
Oluwole Olusanya
Oluwole Olusanya is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of one of the fastest-growing lifestyle and entertainment website in the country. He is a banker, writer, blogger, public affairs analyst and a tax consultant. He anchors Trending Topics on SHEFFA where he shares his thoughts and opinions on trending issues. He is currently studying for a Master’s Degree in Business Administration at the University of South Wales, Wales, United Kingdom. He has diplomas in Banking and Finance, Investigative Journalism, Creative Writing, and Linguistics from Lagos State Polytechnic, Isolo, Lagos, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland and The Open University, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom.