John Kerry, former Secretary of State in the Obama administration, is again being accused of betraying the United States and/or its allies. The first situation – but the one most recently revealed – happened during the Obama administration. The second situation took place during the Trump administration.
The first time that Kerry came under scrutiny was during the Trump administration when he was accused of holding private meetings with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. Some Republicans said that Kerry was “undermining the Trump administration and U.S. interests by maintaining ties to Zarif.”
In May 2018, the Boston Globe reported that Kerry had met with Zarif several months earlier to discuss ways to keep the Iran nuclear deal made during the Obama administration. In September 2018, Kerry admitted to radio host Hugh Hewitt that he had met “three or four times” with Zarif AFTER he (Kerry) was no longer Secretary of State.
President Donald Trump accused Kerry in April 2019 of violating the Logan Act. This law “prohibits private citizens from negotiating with foreign governments on behalf of the U.S. government.” Apparently, nothing came of the accusation.
Now, Kerry is in the spotlight once again with allegations that he passed secret information to Iran about strikes made by Israel in Syria. Of course, Kerry is denying the allegations by saying that he did not share the information with Iran as Secretary of State or after leaving office.
The new allegations are being made by Iran International (London-based outlet) and The New York Times. Allegedly, there was a secret audio recording with Zarif making a statement about Kerry. He said that Kerry had told him that “Israeli forces had struck more than 200 Iranian targets in Syria.” He suggested that he (Zarif) was surprised by the disclosure.
Of course, Republican lawmakers are calling for Kerry’s resignation from the National Security Council. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said the following in a written statement yesterday: “If this tape is verified, it would signal catastrophic and disqualifying recklessness by Envoy Kerry to Foreign Minister Zarif that endangered the safety of Americans and our allies. And it would be consistent with his long pattern of empowering Iran’s regime.”
Kerry is denying any disclosure of secret materials, but his denial left some unanswered questions about what he did not say. Chuck Ross at The Daily Caller noted the following.
Although Kerry denied the report about Zarif’s remarks, he did not directly accuse the Iranian official of lying during the interview reported by Iran International. The Iranian government has not disputed the authenticity of the audio recording, though it decried that it was leaked.
The Iranian government does not like the fact that the information was leaked, but it does not claim the recording is false. Kerry denied the report but did not accuse Zarif of lying. According to the recording, Zarif made the comments to an Iranian journalist, but the report does not mention a timeframe for the alleged remarks of Kerry.
The fact is that “Israel’s activities in Syria have been widely reported for years in the media.” However, “the Israeli government did not officially acknowledge the extent of its military action until September 2018.” At the time, Israeli Intelligence Minister Israel Katz said, “Only just now it was published – in the name of military sources, so I can quote it too – that in the last two years Israel has taken military action more than 200 times within Syria itself.”
On September 12, 2018, Kerry admitted meeting with Zarif “three or four times” since leaving government. However, the Boston Globe’s report in May 2018 said that Kerry had met with Zarif several months earlier. The May 2018 report was more than a year after Kerry left office in January 2017 – and more than four months prior to the release of the information by Israel.
John Kerry may be in a difficult position – between a rock (the audio tape) and a hard place (his own words about meeting with Zarif). If he is a traitor, I hope that he receives the punishment of a serial traitor. If not, I hope that his name is cleared.