October 15 deadline – Trump’s dilemma

One of the most argued issues in the media, in the Iranian context, is the debate regarding October 15th. On that date, the US administration is required to report to the congress on Iranian compliance with the nuclear deal for the third time. Many see a potential turning point. The pro-deal lobbyists have upped their pressure.

Following the compliancy certification in July, Trump added new sanctions on Iran targeting ballistic missiles and support of terrorism, introducing the terminology of “violations of the spirit of the deal” (see for instance usatoday & bbc). Reports then floated regarding a “more aggressive policy on Iran” (see for instance aol, reuters and thehill). Trump himself, in an interview to the wall street journal, stated “if it was up to me, I would have had them non-compliant 180 days ago”. In an address to the American Enterprise Institute on Iran and the JCPOA, Ambassador Haley referred to the topic as an issue of “serious impact on American national security and the security of the world”. She described the deal as “having so many flaws that it is tempting to leave it”, concluding that the three pillars of the deal (the agreement itself, other Iranian behaviors and the Corker-Cardin law) are all shaky. The washingtonpost described her address as UN envoy Haley makes the case for US to potentially pull-away from Iran nuclear deal. Uncertainty still remained. She herself stated that she “does not know what the President will decide”.

Recently (September 14), as reported in the nytimes, Trump did waive the sanctions, but at the same time denounced Iran once again, stating: “They have violated so many different elements, but they’ve also violated the spirit of that deal. And you will see what we’ll be doing in October – it will be evident”.

The indications that Trump might change policy, alarmed the pro-deal camp, which upped the pressure on Trump. Among them arms control experts (see powersource and politico) and “European officials” (see al-monitor).

Those in favor of revising the deal, just get more suspicious when so called experts and Europeans lead the pro-deal camp. See for instance nationalreview in their article “Trump should decertify Iran nuclear deal and ignore experts” stating that “the letter of the experts should make him doubly suspicious” and James Jeffrey’s foreignpolicy article titled the Iran deal is on thin ice and rightly so, stressing “Iran’s behavior is now too dangerous to ignore”.

While the pro-deal camp admits that Iran is a strategic threat, they over-rationalize nuclear violations, overlook missile violations, ignore continued sponsorship of terrorism and global subversive activity. Human rights cast aside completely. The worst of all – they raise the fear that abandoning the deal will lead to a nuclear Iran, while dishonestly discounting the reality that the deal does not end the Iranian nuclear threat, just postpones it.

If Trump will live up to his commitments to do something – then his options are between calling for an annulment or increasing pressure (optional additional supplements).

Blogging & updating on #Iran related news- focusing on Politics, Human Rights & the Iranian nuclear Program. Followed by top Middle East Analysts, Reportes & think tanks.

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Posted in Human Rights, Iranian Financial Sanctions, Iranian Nuclear Crisis, Iranian Politics, Media Coverage

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