There Are No Secret New Iranian Citizens

Carolyn Kaster/AP

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It is a staple of conspiracy theorists that international treaties all have secret protocols known only to a select few. The Iranian nuclear deal is no exception. American conservatives, for example, have long insisted that the agreement’s confidential IAEA annexes provide all sorts of secret exemptions for Iran’s nuclear development. But this kind of thing isn’t limited to Americans. Iran has its own conservatives who oppose the agreement too, and today one of them advanced his own conspiracy theory:

The Obama administration granted citizenship to 2,500 Iranians, including family members of government officials, while negotiating the Iran nuclear deal, a senior cleric and member of parliament has claimed.

Hojjat al-Islam Mojtaba Zolnour, who is chairman of Iran’s parliamentary nuclear committee and a member of its national security and foreign affairs committee, made the allegations during an interview with the country’s Etemad newspaper, cited by the country’s Fars News agency. He claimed it was done as a favor to senior Iranian officials linked to President Hassan Rouhani, and he alleged the move sparked a competition among Iranian officials over whose children would benefit from the scheme.

That’s from Fox News, of course, which suddenly decided this morning that hardline clerics formerly in the Revolutionary Guards are credible sources for their news programs. Minutes later President Trump hopped on board:

There’s no evidence this is true. Trump could have checked with his own State Department, but he didn’t bother. He just said it because he felt like it. In other words, it’s like everything else he says: a lie until proven otherwise.

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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