After sanctions on Iran were lifted in February, three US Congressmen demanded entry visas into Iran. Representatives Mike Pompeo, Lee Zeldin, and Frank LoBiando, all of the GOP, stated their purpose was to inspect Iranian nuclear facilities, interview some Americans incarcerated in Iranian jails, and get a formal accounting from the Iranian Military about the USMC's humiliating surrender to the Iranian Coast Guard. They also wanted to monitor Iranian elections.
On April 12th, the Congressmen sent a follow-up letter, having received no response from Iran. After the Congressmen made a fuss in the media, the Iranians sent their reply and released a copy of it to the press, explaining their reasons for denying the visa request.
For all of their faults, the Iranian leaders are never reticent about expressing their positions, regardless of Political Correctness. Cowardly EU/NATO politicians and American business leaders should take note, because Iran has given us a lesson on the proper way to respond to Beltway bully-boys. Here is the text of the letter in its entirety:
"The Foreign Minister has been informed of your letter of April 12th, 2016, concerning your purported visa request. In this regard, we draw your attention to the following:
"Despite what you seem to presume, members of the US Congress do not get to dictate the policies of other countries. This clearly applies to Iranian visa policies. Bear in mind that, as members of the US Congress, you are not a global authority.
"The nuclear agreement known as JCPOA has clearly specified that the sole body competent for monitoring the implementation of its nuclear provisions is the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). No JCPOA participant, including the United States, and certainly no citizen or official of these countries, can arrogate any such right to monitor the implementation of JCPOA to itself; nor are they authorized by the JCPOA or other provisions of international law to encroach upon Iranian sovereignty by claiming such monitoring authority.
"In the modern era, visits to sites or parliamentary or other delegations to monitor elections are made upon invitations or through bilateral agreements between sovereign states based on reciprocal arrangements, and not upon unilateral demands by self-arrogating individuals or legislators. It bears remembering that Iran and the United States do not have diplomatic relations, and as such, there are no reciprocal monitoring arrangements between the two countries.
"The US Congress has recently enacted rules barring people---ordinarily subject to visa waiver rules---who travel to Iran entry into the United States with obtaining a visa. And when Secretary Kerry, in fulfilling US obligations under JCPOA, promised to waive such restrictions on people who have travelled to Iran, some of you are on record as saying that 'waiving restrictions on persons who have travelled to Iran or who hold Iranian citizenship would put our people at risk.' Surely it is ironic that you believe that going to Iran would radicalize and turn persons of all other countries into potential security risks for the United States; yet you seek to visit Iran and believe that such a visit will have no radicalizing effect on you.
"In spite of your claim, since 1980---when the US broke off diplomatic relations with Iran---Iranian government officials are generally barred from entering the US. We are only permitted ---on a case-by-case basis and after a very lengthy, unusually difficult, and highly selective process---to enter the US to attend meetings of international organizations on US soil. This, while the US is legally required to grant free and unrestricted access as per its international obligations under relevant multilateral agreements. The obligation has never been faithfully or consistently observed. And despite what you seem to believe, Iranian diplomats and nationals who work at the United Nations or come to New York to attend UN meetings are all restricted to a 25-mile radius of Columbus Circle in Manhattan. This is the extent of the hospitality which you boast about in your letter.
"From the time when the manufactured 'nuclear crisis' has been settled through the JCPOA, tens of thousands of tourists, academics, investors, students, and businessmen from throughout the world---including many Americans---have obtained visas and travelled to Iran without any delay or complication. But they have been able to do so by making requests consistent with the relevant regulations of the host country in an appropriate and respectful manner, and not in the completely inappropriate way that you have demanded to visit Iran and interfere in what is of no relevance to your official functions. We doubt that any self-respecting country would grant a visa under such conditions.
"In sum, we consider your visa request to be a publicity stunt and not an appropriate request to visit a sovereign country, and therefore has, and will continue to be, treated in that spirit.
"Signed, Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Islamic Republic of Iran."
It's too bad that it took Iran to put these guys in their places, but it's about time somebody did.