I can’t believe we have to cover this Iran sh*t again.
Point 1: The 45th president doesn’t like the Iran Deal. While he twice certified Iran’s compliance with the July 14, 2015 agreement between Iran, the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council—China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, United States—plus Germany), and the European Union, each time his State Department under Rex Tillerson undercut any positives.
“Today I’d like to address Iran’s alarming and ongoing provocations that export terror and violence, destabilizing more than one country at a time,” Tillerson said in April after the first certification. According to Time Magazine, he proceeded to lay out a long list of bad things Iran is doing, from sponsoring terrorism to oppressing its own people to violating U.N. constraints on its missile program. When it came to the nuclear deal, he said it failed to ensure Iran won’t become a nuclear state in the future and said the administration was conducting a “comprehensive review of our Iran policy.”
The comprehensive review was ongoing when Tillerson made the second certification last week. The 45 administration proceeded to impose more sanctions on Iran.
We get it. 45 called the agreement “bad,” “horrible,” “stupidest deal,” etc.
Point 2: There was no question Iran was pushing the limit of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT). I posted about this March 5, 2010:
The reason Iran is in the news is reasonably straightforward. As signatory of the NPT, Iran has the right to the peaceful use of nuclear technology. The trouble is that in 2003, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) determined that Iran had not been forthcoming about its uranium enrichment program, as required by the NPT. The IAEA conducted an investigation and their Board of Governors reported Iran’s noncompliance with the NPT to the United Nations Security Council. The Security Council demanded that Iran suspend its enrichment programs. The Council imposed sanctions after Iran refused to do so. When the uranium enrichment facility in Qom was made public in 2009, this heightened awareness of Iran’s apparent belligerence precipitated the current discussions between the parties about further sanctions and/or diplomacy. The corporate media latched on to an easy news story.
Point 3: President Barack Obama chose diplomacy. He initiated discussions about nuclear non-proliferation with Iran. Crazy, no? To actually talk to Iran and engage the European Union and the P5+1 states in the deal. The deal was consummated and is in effect. It stopped Iran’s nuclear program. As 45’s administration indicated with its certification of Iran’s compliance, the Iran Deal is working.
Point 4: While 45 hasn’t fulfilled a campaign promise to dismantle the Iran nuclear deal, he remains deeply suspicious of it according to a Sunday article in the Los Angeles Times. The war hawks in Washington, led by former U.N. ambassador John Bolton wanted 45 not to certify compliance. On its own terms the agreement has accomplished its purpose of preventing Iran from enriching uranium to develop technology to make a nuclear weapon, things of which they were well capable in 2009.
On any given day one might say, “who knows what the hell Trump will come up with?” In a dangerous world we should be thanking President Obama for avoiding war with Iran and stopping its nuclear program, something that can’t yet be said about his successor in the Oval Office.