Space Monkey Fail

One small misstep for Iran, one giant bummer for the monkey. Next time, send Ahmadinejad.

Report: Iran Attempt to Launch Monkey Into Space Fails

An attempt by Iran to launch a rocket carrying a live monkey into space in September has met with failure, stalling the country’s program to pursue a human spaceflight capability, according to press reports.

The Iranian Space Agency reportedly attempted to launch a Rhesus monkey into space atop a Kavoshgar-5 rocket (Kavoshgar means “Explorer” in Farsi) during the Iranian month of Shahrivar, a period that ran between Aug. 23 and Sept. 22, according to an Agence-France Press report.

“The Kavoshgar-5 rocket carrying a capsule with a live animal (a monkey) was launched during Shahrivar,” Iran’s Deputy Science Minister Mohammad Mehdinejad-Nouri told the ISNA news agency, according to AFP. “However, the launch was not publicized as all of its anticipated objectives were not accomplished.”

See also:
Iran fails with space monkey launch
Iran Space monkey launch failed
Iran’s attempt to launch a monkey into space ends in failure
We Have Some Bad News About Iran’s Space Monkey
Iran Space Monkey Launch Attempt Fails
Iran tries, fails, to launch monkey into space
Iran’s space monkey failed
Iran “failed” to launch monkey into space
Iran space program confirms attempt to send live monkey into orbit failed
Iran’s attempt to launch monkey into space fails
Iran Fails to Send Monkey Into Space
Scott Hollifield: Space monkey breaking news — Iranian launch fails

The good news is that a nuclear warhead weighs more than a Rhesus monkey so, if Iran can’t put a monkey in space, they probably can’t lift a warhead that far either.

/they should have consulted Patti Smith, the Space Monkey expert

Do You Believe In Iranian Magic?

It looks like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is on his way out as Iran’s president. You know you’re in real trouble when they start arresting your staff for witchcraft.

Ahmadinejad allies charged with sorcery

Close allies of Iran’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, have been accused of using supernatural powers to further his policies amid an increasingly bitter power struggle between him and the country’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Several people said to be close to the president and his chief of staff, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, have been arrested in recent days and charged with being “magicians” and invoking djinns (spirits).

Ayandeh, an Iranian news website, described one of the arrested men, Abbas Ghaffari, as “a man with special skills in metaphysics and connections with the unknown worlds”.

See also:
Ahmadinejad Staffers Accused of Sorcery
Ahmadinejad’s Advisers Jailed for Practicing Witchcraft
Close aide to Ahmadinejad arrested
Ahmadinejad supporters arrested
In Iran, do they burn witches too?
Internal strife emerges as Tehran looks westward
Trouble at the top
Ahmadinejad in the Crosshairs
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to resign as Iranian president?
Breaking: Ahmadinejad to resign

The bizarre arrests seem to have something to do with the production and distribution of the Iranian end times documentary The Coming. Is Ahmadinejad being sacked for his fervent belief that the return of the 12th Imam is near? Will his ouster be a positive development for the West’s relations with Iran? Who knows?

/although, as long as Iran’s theocracy is still in power, I doubt it

End Times, Iranian Style

It doesn’t matter whether it’s true or not, what matters is that the leadership of the Iranian regime believes it and believes they are presently involved in playing an integral part in bringing about the end of the world.

Iran’s End Times Documentary

The Iranian government has produced a bone-chilling documentary that claims that Ayatollah Khamenei, President Ahmadinejad, and Hassan Nasrallah are talked about in Islamic prophecy as leaders who will wage war to bring about the arrival of the Hidden Imam, which the film says is “very close” to happening.

Reza Kahlili, a former member of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards who spied for the CIA and authored A Time to Betray last year, procured the entire film and says it was created by close associates of Ahmadinejad and was shown to top clerics two weeks ago. His chief of staff, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, is said to have played a role in its creation. Kahlili allowed FrontPage to view a shortened version of the film over the weekend, which he says the Iranian regime intends to distribute to mosques and Islamic centers throughout the region with an Arabic translation and is currently being shown to members of the Revolutionary Guards and Basiji.

The purpose of the film is to make the case that Iran is prophetically destined to lead the war against Islam’s enemies, which is as a prelude to the appearance of the Hidden Imam, also called the Mahdi, who brings the final victory for Islam and reigns over the whole world. It uses current events to argue that “the final chapter has begun” and the Mahdi’s arrival is imminent. Most disturbingly, it teaches that Khamenei, Ahmadinejad and Nasrallah are the individuals prophesied to make this happen.

See also:
Iran film says Muslim messiah is near
Iranian Video Says Mahdi is ‘Near’
The Coming, and Why the Left Doesn’t Understand Iran
Iran Film: Iran Plans to Conquer Israel, World
Iran Video Says Mahdi Is Near – Judgement Day and Destruction of Israel Predicted
Appearing Soon: the Twelfth Imam
Iranian Propaganda Film Claims Jerusalem Is About to Be Conquered
“The Last Messiah”
Muhammad al-Mahdi

This is just what the Muslim world needs, even more radical Islamic incitement, this time with an end of days flair. Kill more infidels faster to achieve eternal salvation!

/this falls under the category of know your enemy and if Ahmadinejad, Khamenei, and Nasrallah truly believe that they’re destined to to bring about the end of the world in their lifetimes, the West in in for some serious trouble, heed the warning

Ahmadinejad Checks In, But Will He Check Out?

It’s bad enough when Mr. Evil Incarnate spouts his Jew hatred in his own country, but when he takes his anti-Israel spew show on the road to Lebanon and pals around with Hezbollah, he’s pushing his luck. If Ahmadinejad actually heads for the border and tries to throw rocks into Israel, all bets are off.

Ahmadinejad: Lebanon a school of Jihad

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is on a two-day visit to Lebanon, spoke before a mass rally organized in is honor by Hezbollah at the Dahiya quarter of Beirut, which is considered one of the Shiite group’s strongholds.

Wednesday’s rally, which saw masses gather at a local soccer field, waving Iranian flags and chanted “Welcome” in Persian, was missing Hezbollah Chief Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, who welcomed Ahmadinejad to Lebanon via a video feed from his bunker: “I welcome you here on behalf of the injured, the dead, the released prisoners and this people, who have fought to create the miracle of victory. You are a steadfast staff for the resistance.”

“I come from the land of the Imam Khomeini, bearing the best wishes of the Iranian people and its leaders,” Ahmadinejad told the masses. “Lebanon is the an example and school for unwavering resistance to the world’s tyrants and a university for Jihad. Visiting Lebanon and meeting the leaders is a dream come true for me.”

Ahmadinejad spoke in Persian and used an interpreter.

The Iranian leader wasted no time in attacking Israel for violating the Palestinians’ rights: “Do you see anything but crimes in the past actions of the Zionist regime? The massacre of innocent people, the use of weapons, razing homes, confiscating medicine, food and water, attacking civilians in international waters and threatening the world is an everyday occurrence for them.”

The West, he added, considers Israel “means of dominating the world,” and to that end it has given it nuclear weapons.

‘Israel’s weakness exposed’

Turning his attention to the Second Lebanon War and Operation Cast Lead, the Iranian president said the two military campaigns “exposed Israel’s weakness… it is also possible that those barbaric Zionists will seek a new regional adventure to try and compensate. I say – any attack will only bring this phony regime closer to its end.”

Eldad: IDF should kill Ahmadinejad if he throws stones

MK Arye Eldad (National Union) said on Wednesday that the IDF should kill Ahmadinejad if he visits Lebanon’s border with Israel.

“The history of man-kind would be different if in 1939 somehow, a Jewish soldier had succeeded to kill Hitler,” Eldad said.

He continued, “If even for one moment, Ahmadinejad is in the IDF’s sights on the day that he comes to throw stones at us, he cannot be allowed to return home alive.”

“The State of Israel was established so that the Jewish people can be responsible for their own destiny,” Eldad said.

See also:
Iran’s Ahmadinejad receives rapturous welcome in Lebanon
Iranian Leader’s Visit Raises Tensions In Lebanon
Ahmadinejad visit stirs up Lebanon’s perennially volatile politics
Ahmadinejad’s visit to Lebanon stirs tensions
Lebanese Opinions Differ on Ahmadinejad’s VisitIranian leader visits Lebanon
Ahmadinejad receives warm welcome in Beirut
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad receives hero’s welcome in Lebanon
Ahmadinejad ‘proud’ to be among brothers as he arrives in Beirut
Ahmadinejad arrives to fanfare of rose petals in Beirut’s southern suburbs
U.S.: We suspect Iran doesn’t have Lebanon’s interest at heart
US: Ahmadinejad visit to Lebanon is “provocative”
Ahmadinejad hails Lebanon resistance in face of Israel
ISRAEL: Iranians at the gates — what to do?
Ahmadinejad vows to Hezbollah that U.S., Israeli power will be eclipsed
Ahmadinejad plays Lebanon card, plans to throw a stone at Israel
Far-right MK: Assassinating Ahmadinejad today is like assassinating Hitler in 1939
MK Eldad: Ahmadinejad should not return home alive
Israeli MP Calls for Liquidating Ahmadinejad … Netanyahu’s Deputy: We Don’t Kill Presidents

Israel doesn’t actually have to assassinate Ahmadinejad, he’s going to be hanging out with Hezbollah all day and touring their explosives laden camps, tempting fate. Hey, Hezbollah weapons caches have been known to “accidental” blow up before, so it’s far from out of the realm of possibility. You’ll notice that Nasrallah isn’t stupid, he never leaves his bunker, because he knows what will happen if he does.

/in any case, tomorrow should be interesting, do not taunt happy IDF fun ball

So, How Are Those Sanctions Working Out?

I think Obama and Hillary finally have a hold of Iran by the balls this time, for sure. It won’t be long now before Iran gives up on their nuclear program and Ahmadinejad gets down on his knees and begs the West not to punish Iran anymore.

Iran increases uranium enrichment – IAEA

The International Atomic Energy Agency has said Iran has activated more equipment to enrich uranium more efficiently, violating UN resolutions.

The UN watchdog said a second set, or “cascade”, of centrifuges was operating at the Natanz pilot fuel enrichment plant when inspectors visited in July.

The move to enrich uranium to 20% purity means Iran could quickly advance to making weapons-grade material.

The West believes Iran is seeking to build a nuclear bomb. Iran denies this.

The UN Security Council, the US and EU have each imposed sanctions on the Iranian authorities to force them to halt enrichment activities.

Power station

Iran has been producing low-enriched uranium (LEU) of about 3.5% purity for some time, and announced in February that it had begun enriching uranium to 20% to make fuel for its Tehran research reactor, which produces medical isotopes. A bomb would require at least 90%.

“The IAEA can confirm that on 17 July, when agency inspectors were at [Natanz], Iran was feeding nuclear material to the two interconnected 164-machine centrifuge cascades,” spokeswoman Gill Tudor said.

Ms Tudor said the move was “contrary to UN Security Council resolutions affirming that Iran should suspend all enrichment-related activities”.

The centrifuges spin uranium hexafluoride (UF6) gas at high speeds to separate the fissile U-235 atoms from the denser U-238 atoms.

Experts say that using two interconnected cascades increases efficiency by allowing leftover LEU to be re-fed into the machines.

See also:
Iran Expands Production of Higher-Enriched Uranium
IAEA: Iran activates enrichment equipment
Iran starts more efficient uranium enrichment – ISIS
Iran slams media hype over enrichment
IAEA: Iran boosts nuclear enrichment efficiency
Ten questions for the negotiators with Iran
Leaky Sanctions
Natanz [Kashan]
Natanz

Once again, Iran beats us like a drum. Hey Obama, how many times does Ahmadinejad have to laugh at you and kick sand in your face before you grow a spine and take this threat seriously? It’s painfully obvious to anyone with a third grade education that your “sanctions” are worthless and unenforceable. In fact, your “sanctions” do absolutely nothing to deter Iran and serve only to make them more defiant, the exact opposite of the desired effect. You’re desperately in need of a new, adult foreign policy team that doesn’t arrive for work every day in a clown car.

/all I can say is that when Israel finally does what has to be done, you’d better [expletive deleted] stay out of their way

Mahmoud Versus The Sea Creature

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad took time out from his busy schedule of promising to destroy Israel to bad mouth Paul, the 100% accurate, World Cup match winner predicting octopus. Mahmoud must think that Paul the octopus is one of those dastardly Zionist sea creatures.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad attacks Octopus Paul

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian leader, says Paul the Octopus, the sea creature that correctly predicted the outcome of World Cup games, is a symbol of all that is wrong with the western world.

He claims that the octopus is a symbol of decadence and decay among “his enemies”.

Paul, who lives at the Oberhausen Sea Life Centre, in Germany, won the hearts of the Spanish by predicting their World Cup victory.

He became an international star after predicting the outcome of all seven German World Cup matches accurately.

However, the Iranian president accused the octopus of spreading “western propaganda and superstition.” Paul was mentioned by Mr Ahmadinejad on various occasions during a speech in Tehran at the weekend.

“Those who believe in this type of thing cannot be the leaders of the global nations that aspire, like Iran, to human perfection, basing themselves in the love of all sacred values,” he said.

See also:
Iran’s newest state enemy: an octopus
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Newest Enemy: Octopus Paul
Iranian president Ahmadinejad denounces superstitious West over Paul the Octopus
Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says Paul the Octopus reflects all that’s wrong with the western world
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Lashes Out Against the Psychic Octopus
Paul the octopus

Mahmoud is just jealous because the octopus is actually sane and smarter than he is.

/then again, Paul the octopus is smarter than Joe Biden too

The Incredible Ineptitude Of “Smart Diplomacy”

The Who Won’t Get Fooled Again, but the United States keeps getting fooled time after time after time. Once again, the Iranians have run diplomatic circles around the Obama Administration’s comical and ineffective “smart diplomacy”. If this was a little league softball game, they’d have to invoke the ten run rule.

Iran’s nuclear move may derail U.S. efforts on sanctions

An agreement by Iran to send much of its nuclear fuel abroad clouded prospects for U.S.-led plans to impose further economic sanctions on Tehran over its controversial nuclear development program.

The proposal, brokered by leaders of Brazil and Turkey during an 18-hour session in Tehran and announced late Sunday, drew a reaction of cautious skepticism from the United States and its Western allies, who questioned whether it goes far enough to address longstanding concerns over the goal of the Iranian nuclear program. Iran says its effort is for civilian energy purposes only, but Western powers believe Tehran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons.

U.S., French, German and Russian officials all raised questions about the announcement, noting that Iran would still keep more than a ton of its nuclear stockpile and would continue enriching uranium in its centrifuges. But Western leaders also called for further study of the plan, saying it should not be dismissed out of hand.

The agreement appeared to sap some of the momentum for a new round of United Nations Security Council sanctions, which looked to include restrictions on Iranian government financial transactions. Officials from Turkey and Brazil said the deal removed any need for further U.N. sanctions. The two countries currently sit on the 15-member Security Council, though neither has the power to veto a sanctions resolution.

It remains to be seen whether Tehran was merely trying to avert imminent sanctions or whether the pact could form the basis of a wider accord. In making the uranium transfer abroad, Iran would drop its previous insistence that any swaps should take place on Iranian soil.

U.S. officials face a choice of rejecting the deal and appearing intransigent, or accepting it, potentially allowing Iran to defuse mounting international pressures through an indefinite delay.

The plan calls for Iran to ship 2,640 pounds of its low-enriched uranium to Turkey under the supervision of both Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency, or IAEA, in Vienna. In return, Iran would receive 265 pounds of uranium from France and Russia within a year for use in a small nuclear reactor that produces medical isotopes to treat the ill.

Talked Into A Trap

Nuclear Iran: President Obama’s “direct diplomacy with Iran without preconditions” has, not surprisingly, led us down a blind alley. Now China and Russia are about to mug us with Turkey’s phony uranium deal.

The White House is learning that its “tough diplomacy” is a boomerang that may soon leave America nursing a very sore lump on its head.

The deal Iran triumphantly announced with Turkey and Brazil on Monday is exactly the kind of development that can give Moscow and Beijing the excuse not to agree to more sanctions. Which would mean that President Obama is left painted into a corner about what to do next to prevent a terrorist regime in the Middle East from getting nukes.

It was all smiles in Tehran as Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan patted themselves on the back as peacemakers, and clasped hands with the world’s most powerful hater of Jews, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. His shady re-election nearly a year ago sparked mass demonstrations and the killing of protesters by the Islamofascist regime.

In a regurgitation of last fall’s Geneva agreement that Iran ultimately backed out of, the new “fuel swap” deal would require Tehran to send some enriched uranium to Turkey. After a year, Iran would get some non-weapons-grade uranium back from Russia and France.

But Tehran says it will continue its own uranium enrichment activities, which means that when all is said and done nothing has changed.

As the Sarkozy government in France warns, the Turkey deal does “nothing to settle the problem posed by the Iranian nuclear program.” The new British government says it will continue to push for sanctions; an unimpressed Germany says what matters is Iran’s domestic enrichment.

Even the White House admits the deal resolves nothing. Press Secretary Robert Gibbs’ reaction was to point out that “the words and the deeds of the Iranian leadership rarely coincide.”

But China and Russia, which both have economic and geopolitical reasons to stay cozy with their trading partner, can use this deal to say in answer to President Obama’s charisma offensive designed to get them on board new sanctions: “Problem solved! Give Iran some slack.”

In the coming months, as Tehran continues to block inspection of nuclear facilities, and Moscow and Beijing refuse to approve new sanctions, what does the president do?

Reject what he was willing to accept last fall (because since then Iran has been busy enriching lots more uranium, and that makes it a different ballgame today)?

See also:
Iran’s Nuclear Coup
Iran nuclear fuel swap: how Turkey is complicating US aims
Nuclear swap deal helps prevent sanctions on Iran: Brazilian VP
Israel fears Iran nuclear deal will delay UN sanctions
Iran and Turkey reach unexpected accord on enriched uranium
Iran’s unanswered questions
West not convinced of Iran uranium deal
U.S., allies critical of new deal on Iran’s nuclear program
White House Keeps Sanctions on Table After Iran Announces Nuclear Fuel Deal
Lucy Says: C’mon, Kick The Football Charlie Brown

So, let’s recap, Iran gets to keep working on their nuclear weapons program, full speed ahead, without the threat of any meaningful sanctions and, at the same time, Iran makes the Obama administration out to be an international laughingstock.

/it’s a twofer

Death Of The Green Movement

So much for any hope of regime change in Iran any time soon. What a damn shame that the United States government offered exactly zero encouragement and support for the Green Movement when the Iranian opposition had the most momentum, directly after the last Iranian elections.

Iran moves to finally crush opposition movement

Iran’s last two legally registered political parties were disbanded this week after their leaders were thrown in jail. The government also banned a reformist newspaper and has carried out arrests of a number of high profile liberals.

Activists said that almost all prominent opposition supporters had suffered in the 10 months since June’s presidential election which returned Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to power.

Opponents have suffered increasing harassment in recent weeks with new restrictions imposed on their movements, monitoring and disruption of phone calls and warnings of future punishment.

One activist said: “This is not a normal country. I cannot express my views or carry out my activities in any way more.

“There is no more mobile contact between us in the opposition. We can only meet by shaking off the people who tail us. The risks are high and getting worse.”

Mirhossein Mousavi, Iran’s opposition leader, is being held under restrictive conditions, according to close associates who claim they can no longer communicate directly with their leader.

Activists close to the former Iranian prime minister who finished second behind President Ahmadinejad told the The Daily Telegraph that they can no longer regularly communicate with their leader.

The leader of Iran’s Green Movement has not been seen in public for two months and only rarely leaves home. Neither he or his politically active wife Zahra Rahnavard have access to a telephone and their attempts at email communication has been limited.

The two political parties were outlawed after their leaders were imprisoned for helping to plan demonstrations. Mohsen Mirdamadi, leader of the Islamic Iran Participation Front and Mostafa Tajzadeh Mujaheddin of the Islamic Revolution Organisation were sentenced to six years in prison on Monday.

See also:
Iran bans the country’s two remaining official opposition parties
Iran widens clampdown on opposition
Bans, jail for Iran opposition
Suspensions Of Two Factions Aim To Cripple Iran Reform Drive
Official gives reasons to ban two reformist groups
Iran Bans Top Reformist Organizations
Iran Mutes a Chorus of Voices for Reform
Iran suspends two leading reformist parties: report
Iran sentences 3 opposition activists to prison
Three reformists get six-year jail terms in Iran: agency
Iran bans the country’s two remaining official opposition parties
Iran ‘bans newly-reopened reformist daily’
Iran shuts down prominent reformist newspaper
Iran: Another reformist newspaper banned
Press watchdog bans reformist newspaper

Where is the U.S. government on this, why aren’t Obama and Clinton making public statements strongly condemning this Iranian theocracy’s brutal silencing of political dissent?

/probably because Obama and the Democrats are too busy trying to silence political dissent here at home

A Recipe For Disaster

Can you smell what Iran is cooking?

Key Iraqi Sunni Political Bloc Pulls Out of March 7 Parliamentary Election

A key Sunni political bloc declared Saturday that it would not take part in Iraq’s March 7 parliamentary election. Saleh al-Mutlak, who was banned from running by a parliamentary committee, is pulling his National Dialogue Front out of the election with just over a week to go before voting is set to begin.

The decision by veteran Sunni politician Saleh al-Mutlak to pull his political bloc out of the approaching election poses a severe blow to the Iraqi electoral process, and gives ammunition to adversaries of any compromise.

An appeals court recently upheld a decision by a parliamentary committee barring al-Mutlak from running, because of alleged ties to the Baath Party of deposed leader Saddam Hussein.

Mutlak’s spokesman, Haidar al-Mullah, told reporters that his National Dialogue Front was “boycotting the upcoming election” and urged other parties to do the same. He supported the decision by citing complaints by U.S. commander in Iraq General Ray Odierno and Ambassador Christopher Hill over Iranian interference in the electoral process.

The parliament committee which banned dozens of prominent Sunni candidates from running in the election is led by pro-Iranian politicians Ahmad Chalabi and Ali Faisal al-Lami. Chalabi denied, Friday, on Al Hurra TV, that Iran had any responsibility in the decision.

. . .

Top U.S. officials, as well as many Iraqi Sunni leaders, have accused Iran of pushing for the decision to ban key Sunni politicians from running in the election. Marina Ottaway thinks that it may be a “bit much to see the long arm of [Iranian] President [Mahmoud] Ahmedinejad” behind the current crisis, because Iraq, she says, “has never had much of a democratic tradition.”

Abou Diab, however, believes that the current political imbroglio has clear Iranian origins, and that Iran wants “to turn Iraq into a friendly client-state after the planned U.S. withdrawal,” next August.

See also:
Iraq party pulls out of vote
Popular Sunni political party to boycott Iraqi elections
Sunni party vows to boycott Iraqi elections
Fears of Iraq poll boycott after Sunni party pulls out
Sunni party to boycott Iraqi elections
Sunni bloc boycotts Iraq vote citing Iran interference
In Turmoil, Sunni Party in Iraq Calls for Vote Boycott
Secular party withdraws from Iraq’s elections
Sunni Bloc Boycotts Iraq Polls
Sunni party pulls out of Iraq elections
US envoy accuses Iran over poll ban
US general links Chalabi to Iran
Chalabi Tells General Odierno: ‘Mind Your Own Business’ – Iraq News Agency, Iraq
Iraqi former PM Allawi meets Saudi king ahead of polls

Remember Ahmed Chalabi? He was instrumental in providing us with the information (reports of weapons of mass destruction and Saddam’s alleged ties to al-Qaeda) that got us to invade Iraq and overthrow Saddam Hussein. Now, it appears that he’s trying to deliver control over Iraq to the Iranians after we leave. Have we been played as the world’s biggest suckers by Iran and her agents?

/wouldn’t it be a shame if Ahmed Chalabi were to suddenly go missing?

So Much For Any Meaningful Sanctions, Now What?

Gee, maybe Obama shouldn’t keep pissing off Chana with his “smart diplomacy”.

At U.N., China insists it’s not ‘right’ time for sanctions on Iran

China’s envoy to the United Nations said Tuesday that his government is not ready to impose tough new sanctions on Iran for defying the world body’s demands that it suspend its uranium enrichment program.

“This is not the right time or right moment for sanctions, because the diplomatic efforts are still going on,” Zhang Yesui said at a news briefing at the start of China’s rotating monthly presidency of the U.N. Security Council.

The Chinese remarks underscore the challenges the United States faces in rallying international backing for its effort to punish Iran for nuclear violations. The Obama administration has been preparing a package of targeted sanctions against the Revolutionary Guard Corps and other Iranian institutions it deems responsible for acquiring nuclear and ballistic-missile technology.

“It’s no secret that China and the United States look at the utility of sanctions differently,” said P.J. Crowley, a spokesman for the State Department.

He said that U.S. officials would keep pressing other countries to impose “additional sanctions” on Iran’s ruling elite, but he added, “We want to do this in a way that can target specific entities within the Iranian government but not punish the Iranian people, who are clearly looking for a different relationship with their government.”

U.S. and European diplomats have acknowledged that China and Russia are likely to approve only the mildest of new sanctions. One Security Council envoy said the United States and its Western allies are planning to unveil a second round of their own sanctions against Iranian officials, including some responsible for the violent post-election crackdown on opposition movements.

Council diplomats say that China, which is expanding its commercial ties with Iran, has hardened its resistance to sanctions in recent months. Last month, it declined to attend a meeting on the nuclear crisis with the council’s four other veto-wielding powers — the United States, Russia, Britain and France — as well as Germany, citing a scheduling conflict, one of the diplomats said.

See also:
China: Now is not the time for new Iran sanctions
China Not Ready to Support Iran Sanctions
No Iran sanctions now, China says
As zero hour nears, differences emerge on sanctions
Time not right for new Iran sanctions: Chinese envoy
China dismisses Iran sanctions talk for now at UN
China dismisses more UN sanctions talk during its Security Council presidency in January
China Calls for More Iran Negotiations
Clinton: U.S. Not Closing the Door on Talks With Iran

So, Obama looks like a complete ass again because he foolishly set a December 31st deadline, which has now come and gone, for Iran to comply with demands to end its nuclear program or else. Well, as expected, Iran has not only ignored Obama’s deadline, but Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has repeatedly and publicly mocked Obama’s “smart diplomacy”.

And then today, China summarily pulls the rug out from under Obama by telling him he can forget about his or else of sanctions.

/now what?