WASHINGTON — He’s done it. After years of condemning the Iran nuclear deal, President Donald Trump dealt a perhaps-fatal blow Tuesday to the tattered accord, declaring it “defective at its core” and announcing his intent to withdraw from the 2015 agreement. “This was a horrible one-sided deal that should have never, ever been made,” Trump said. “It didn’t bring calm, it didn’t bring peace, and it never will.” Specifically, the president pledged to re-impose some of the previous U.S. sanctions on Iran, the indispensable step in terminating one of the most contentious arms control agreements in recent history. The controversy is sure to go on, with the deal’s defenders warning that Trump’s decision could lead to the collapse of U.S. relationships in Europe, spiking oil prices, or even war in the Middle East. From the outset, the JCPOA contained the seeds of its own destruction. More likely, after all the noise dies … [Read more...] about Trump pulled out of the Iran deal. What now?
The iran deal
Freddy Gray 8 May 2018 7:15 PM 8 May 2018 7:15 PM Share Twitter Facebook LinkedIn Email Whatsapp Did anybody really think President Donald J Trump wasn’t going to pull out of the Iran deal? He’s said all along he would and this Commander-in-Chief’s number one public image rule is that, unlike most politicians, he honours his word. Trump’s other big rule is that anything Obama has done he’ll undo. And Obama’s biggest achievement, according to his admirers and former staffers, was the Iran deal, which – in theory anyway — stopped Tehran from acquiring nukes while strengthening democratic forces within the troubled Muslim state. The pride with which Team Obama held up the deal was precisely why Team Trump wanted to destroy. And with his new hawkish cabinet — a war cabinet, as Jacob Heilbrunn called it recently —any obstacles to his tearing up the deal were removed. As one … [Read more...] about Donald Trump pulls out of the Iran deal. Is anyone surprised?
Keeping the deal alive would prove a diplomatic coup for the Kremlin. U.S. President Donald Trump walks from the Diplomatic Reception Room after speaking about the Iran nuclear deal at the White House in Washington. Kevin Lamarque / Reuters As U.S. President Donald Trump prepares to withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan Of Action (JCPOA) — known in Trump world as “Obama’s bad deal with Iran” — Moscow, surprisingly, has found itself on what might be called the right side of history.It’s is a rare diplomatic moment that Moscow cannot help but relish.Together with Europe, China and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Russia fully supports the continued implementation of the JCPOA.Indeed, the Trump administration has so far failed to offer a convincing argument for why the nuclear deal with Iran should be scrapped. For all intents and purposes, the deal has blocked Iran’s immediate pathways to the nuclear bomb with a rigorous … [Read more...] about Why Russia Wants the Iran Deal (Op-ed)
But will their apparent bond prove productive as European capitals struggle to save the Iran nuclear deal from Trump's impulsive wrath? The idea will be tested Monday when the French leader begins a state visit in Washington, and European diplomats have a lot invested in what seems a tricky task. There is not much time. Trump is due to decide by May 12th whether talks with Paris, Berlin and London on tougher anti-Iran measures have advanced far enough. If he feels the "flaws" in the 2015 deal have not been adequately repaired, he may decide to withdraw his support, opening the way for renewed US sanctions that could torpedo the whole accord. Europe would see this as a disaster, both in terms of the deal itself -- a central plank in their non-proliferation strategy -- and in terms of relations with Washington. If anyone can talk down Trump, it might be Macron, who has better relations with the White House than his British and German counterparts Theresa May and Angela Merkel. READ … [Read more...] about Can Macron’s White House visit save the Iran deal?
It looks like the Iran nuclear deal will not survive past May 12. That is the next occasion President Donald Trump will have to end waivers on crippling sanctions against Iran, withdrawing America from the agreement. Unless European allies commit to fixing its main flaws -- the sunset provisions, lack of restrictions on Iran's missile tests and the hampered inspection process -- Trump will withdraw.QuickTake Iran's Nuke ProgramThe president is already setting the stage. He replaced Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, the most vocal proponent of the deal, with one of its toughest critics, former CIA director Mike Pompeo. Then there is the new national security adviser, John Bolton, who six months ago drafted strategy for getting the U.S. out of the agreement altogether. There are strong arguments for following through on this course. As Israel's prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, likes to say, Iran gets to become a breakout nuclear power down the road by adhering to the agreement's … [Read more...] about Don’t Blow Up The Iran Deal. Trump’s Strategy Is Working.