Obama Admin Blocked Arrests of Iranian Individuals Linked to Nuclear, Missile Programs to Save Nuke Deal

Iranian Army via AP

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) released a statement on Wednesday describing the Obama administration's blocking of FBI arrest operations aimed at individuals involved with Iran's nuclear weapons and missile programs. Then-Secretary of State John Kerry reportedly intervened in the investigations and arrests due to "ongoing politics."


Former Secretary of State John Kerry blocked multiple FBI arrest operations against individuals linked to Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs to further negotiations on the failed Iran nuclear deal, according to unclassified internal FBI emails obtained by Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) via legally protected whistleblower disclosures. Grassley and Johnson are making internal FBI records public and seeking accountability for this obstruction.

 “The records provided to our offices show that the Obama/Biden administration’s State Department, under the leadership of John Kerry, actively and persistently interfered with FBI operations pertaining to lawful arrests of known terrorists, members of Iranian proliferation networks, and other criminals providing material support for Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs,” the senators wrote in letters to the State and Justice Departments, as well as the FBI. “The records also show that DOJ and FBI leadership apparently allowed it to happen until the Trump administration altered course.” 

In short, the Obama administration, in which current President Joe Biden was serving as vice president, prevented the lawful arrest of known terrorists, who were associated with the world's #1 state sponsor of terrorism. This was done, reportedly, to facilitate the talks that led to the infamous Iran nuclear deal.


On assuming office in 2017, the Trump administration reversed this policy.

Records reveal the Obama-Biden State Department (State) forced the FBI, between 2015 and 2016, to stand down on arrests in eight cases – one of which involved an Iranian subject on the Terrorism Watch List – due to “on-going politics.” State’s brazen political calculus led the FBI to determine they would “have to sit back and wait until all the US and Iran negotiations resolve themselves” before arresting the Iranians. The Trump administration lifted State’s block on FBI arrests upon taking office, resulting in the successful capture of two of the Iranian targets.  

Senators Grassley and Johnson have sent letters with attached records to the State Department, the Department of Justice, and the FBI, directing them to produce any communications involving this issue.

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The FBI and the Justice Department were, apparently, pliable to the Obama administration's demands.

Records further show State’s actions, at the direction of former Secretary Kerry, endangered national security, hamstrung the FBI’s law enforcement efforts and counteracted our government’s stance against Iran. Even so, the FBI and Justice Department, under the leadership of then-Director Comey and then-Attorney General Lynch, failed to put a stop to Kerry’s political interference.


Senator Grassley has expressed skepticism about the Iran nuclear deal since at least 2015. On assuming office in 2021, the Biden administration has resumed talks with Iran.

Iran is beset with problems. The country's population growth rate has been below replacement since the late '90s. Iran's younger generations, many of whom have been educated outside Iran, are growing restless. Even with these issues, there are indications that the terror-sponsoring nation is still trying to develop a nuclear weapon.

This is a developing story. We will bring you updates, including any replies to Senator Grassley's and Senator Johnson's requests for information, as events warrant.


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