Boots & Sabers

The blogging will continue until morale improves...


Everything but tech support.

0648, 29 Aug 16

Obama’s Ransom Payment to Iran Unprecedented

Well, yeah… that’s because past presidents didn’t pay massive ransoms to terrorist-supporting regimes.

WASHINGTON (AP) — A $400 million cash delivery to Iran to repay a decades-old arbitration claim may be unprecedented in recent U.S. history, according to legal experts and diplomatic historians, raising further questions about a payment timed to help free four American prisoners in Iran.

The money was sent to Iran on Jan. 17, the same day Tehran agreed to release the prisoners. The Obama administration claimed for months the events were separate, but recently acknowledged the cash was used as leverage until the Americans were allowed to leave Iran. Only then, did the U.S. allow a plane with euros, Swiss francs and other foreign currency loaded on pallets to take off in the other direction for Tehran.

“There’s actually not anything particularly unusual about the mechanism for this transaction,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said this week of the initial cash payment.

But diplomatic historians and lawyers with expertise in international arbitration struggled to find any similar examples.

Asked to recall a similar payment of the U.S. using cash or hard money to settle an international dispute, the office of the State Department historian couldn’t provide an example.


0648, 29 August 2016


  1. Kevin Scheunemann

    It’s still shocking liberals deny this is a ransom to terrorists.

    It’s as obvious as Bill Clinton’s marital infidelity.

  2. Le Roi du Nord

    Iran-Contra anyone ??

  3. Kevin Scheunemann


    What does taking money from Iran and funding freedom fighters against human rights butchering leftists have to do with this?

  4. Le Roi du Nord

    Nothing, as that wasn’t what Iran-Contra was about.  Your feeble grasp of history and aversion to knowledge trips you up again.

  5. Owen

    By all means, let’s debate a controversy from 30 years ago instead of what’s happening RIGHT NOW.

  6. Pat

    “Well, yeah… that’s because past presidents didn’t pay massive ransoms to terrorist-supporting regimes.”

    Reagan sold Iran weapons for hostages. There was a law against that and people went to jail over it.
    If there was a law that The Obama administration broke then bring on the trials. Until then, it’s just more faux political outrage.

  7. Owen

    OK, let’s say I accept your premise that the Iran-Contra deal was equivalent to what Obama did. I don’t, but you seem to think they are the same. Are you saying that it’s OK then? Are you saying that Iran-Contra was OK because Obama sent $400 million in cash to Iran in 2016?

  8. Pat

    Iran-Contra wasn’t the same because what Reagan did was against the law. If what the Obama administration did is against the law then I would assume that Congress will be holding hearings, much like what happened with Iran-Contra. If there were any illegalities that occurred with the transaction then there should be charges brought forth. So far I know of no illegalities, do you?

  9. Kevin Scheunemann


    I’ll bite.

    What in my statement has an incorrect historical perspective?


  10. Le Roi du Nord

    I’m with Pat on this issue.  If there was a crime committed then prosecute.


    For starters, “What does taking money from Iran and funding freedom fighters against human rights butchering leftists have to do with this”?  And I am sure the nuns in the area didn’t think much of the freedom fighters.



  11. Le Roi du Nord

    A little historical perspective.  I like the quote from RR.
    The Iran-Contra scandal was a political scandal in the United States that occurred during the second term of the Reagan Administration. Senior administration officials secretly facilitated the sale of arms to Iran, which was the subject of an arms embargo. They hoped thereby to secure the release of several U.S. hostages and to fund the Contras in Nicaragua. Under the Boland Amendment, further funding of the Contras by the government had been prohibited by Congress. (LA Times)

    On March 4, 1987, Reagan , taking full responsibility for any actions that he was unaware of, and admitting that “what began as a strategic opening to Iran deteriorated, in its implementation, into trading arms for hostages”. (Nation Security Archives)
    Charges were brought against five individuals for their support of the Contras. Those charges, however, were later dropped because the administration refused to declassify certain documents. The indicted conspirators faced various lesser charges instead. In the end, fourteen administration officials were indicted, including then-Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger. Eleven convictions resulted, some of which were vacated on appeal.[12] The rest of those indicted or convicted were all pardoned in the final days of the presidency of George H. W. Bush, who had been vice-president at the time of the affair. (BBC, reporting on the Tower report).

  12. Kevin Scheunemann


    You claim some nuns had a low opinion of freedom fighters against vicious Marxists, still does not make my statement incorrect.

    I’m certain the freedom fighters ran into leftist Marxist sympathizers from time to time.

    Still has nothing to do with Obama funding terrorism.

  13. Le Roi du Nord

    While this occurred just before RR took office, his administration covered it up for years, and even tried to blame the nuns.  They weren’t “freedom fighters”, they were murderers.  Kevin, you truly have no conscience or moral compass.  Spin this however you want, it will be interesting to see how you make excuses.

    “The victims were 49-year-old Maura Clarke, and 40-year-old Ita Ford, Maryknoll sisters from New York; Dorothy Kazel, a 40-year-old Ursuline nun from Cleveland; and Jean Donovan, a 27-year old lay missionary who was engaged to be married, also from Cleveland.

    The churchwomen were working in rural areas with peasants who lived in fear of being kidnapped and killed by soldiers and right-wing death squads.  In the eyes of the Salvadoran military, working with the poor was synonymous with being a subversive, and “marked them for assassination,” Robert White, the American ambassador at the time, said in a recent interview with Retro Report”.

  14. Kevin Scheunemann


    Freedom fighters were fighting a typical Leftist Marxist government that stole, imprisoned people without cause, tortured and executed people without cause, and destroyed any hope for a better life. Did innocent people get hurt in war against evil leftist thugs? Yes, but the Marxist atrocities were far worse…as they always are.

    You are way off topic in your apology for standard Marxist evil.

  15. Le Roi du Nord

    So in your world  murdering nuns is OK, correct ?  Great place to be, and very christian.

  16. Pat

    That incident involved the kidnapping, rape, and murder of the nuns. I don’t know how much worse it could have been for them. It’s truly sad that there are individuals in this world that find that morally acceptable. It shows how far we have sunk as a human race.

  17. Le Roi du Nord


    So true.

  18. Kevin Scheunemann

    Nord, Pat,

    I said innocent people got hurt in the war.   I did not say I supported that.

    Marxists, when in power have committed the some of the worst human evil in the 20th century, they needed to be overthrown.

    But yet you guys support the Obama ransom…how many innocent people will that money hurt?

    There was an upside to funding the contras.

    There is no upside to funding Iran!

  19. Le Roi du Nord

    RR also sold weapons to Iran, some of which were used against our troops in the later wars.  The sale of those weapons was illegal, as was funding the “freedom-fighters”.  I thought you were all about the rule of law?

    No doubt Marxists have committed evil, but so have right-wing death squads.

    I don’t know how many innocent people that recent payment to Iran will hurt, nor do you.

    Ask those nuns about “upside”.  You really have no conscience.

    We aren’t “funding” Iran, but rather returning  $$ seized years ago.

  20. Pat

    The nuns didn’t get hurt in a war, they were kidnapped, raped, and murdered, by cowardly evil thugs. Anyone who finds this acceptable under the guise of war is morally corrupt.

  21. Kevin Scheunemann

    Pat and Nord,

    This is all a pleasant journey to massive history revisionism, but the question remains,

    What is the upside to funding Iranian terrorism?

  22. Le Roi du Nord

    “history revisionism”, really ?  Far better scholars and historians than you would disagree.  But then, you are always correct, even if you aren’t.

  23. Kevin Scheunemann


    I gave you the upside to funding contras…. Overthrowing evil Marxists.

    What is upside to funding terrorist Iran?

    Especially if you claim to care about the innocent?

  24. Le Roi du Nord

    No, you tried to make excuses for right-wing “freedom fighters” murdering nuns. There is no up-side to that in the real world unless you are morally bankrupt.

    You have no idea where that $ sent to Iran will be spent, nor do I.  It could be spent on hospitals and health care, or on terrorism.

  25. Kevin Scheunemann

    Nord said,

    “You have no idea where that $ sent to Iran will be spent, nor do I. It could be spent on hospitals and health care, or on terrorism.”

    So we COULD be funding the hurting of the innocent through terrorists.

    That is outrageous!

    Why is it so important for Obama apologists to defend funding Islamic terrorism?

Pin It on Pinterest