OTHER OPINION: Argentina’s shameful pact with Iran

By Miami Herald

In a shocking vote over the weekend, lawmakers in Argentina approved President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner’s delusional decision to strike a deal with Iran to investigate the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people, an action for which Argentina’s own investigators blame Iran.
Argentina will pay a heavy price for this incredibly self-destructive action.
The action also destroys whatever claim Argentina may have had to be considered a credible force on the international stage.
Six years ago, Argentina’s judiciary and prosecutors found sufficient evidence, after more than a decade of investigation, to pin the lethal attack on the terrorists of Hezbollah for carrying it out, and Iran for financing it.
The prosecutors also obtained Interpol arrest warrants for six suspects, including Amad Vahidi, who at the time was the head of the elite Quds force and today is Iran’s minister of defense.
So why the about-face?
Some believe the agreement with Iran was motivated by a geopolitical desire to raise the country’s profile and end the long-festering confrontation with Iran, which has become more active diplomatically and economically in South America in recent years.
There are economic reasons, as well. Iran buys Argentina’s agricultural commodities. The increasing level of trade with Argentina surpasses $1 billion, and will likely go higher as Iran seeks to curry favor in Buenos Aires.
But cozying up to Iran is likely to backfire because the evidence against Iran has already been disclosed.
International human rights groups and Argentina’s own citizens and civic institutions have denounced the action.
The shameful pact should be denounced by friends of democracy everywhere. For any nation to make common cause with terrorists is deplorable. But when a government that claims to represent the victims of the crime becomes a partner of the perpetrators, it has lost its claim to legitimacy.

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