Trump Foreign Policy Emerges
1. Renew old acquaintances ignored, insulted, attacked, or compromised by Obama. So far, this is going great.
2. Strike at our enemies with military force, and notice, commensurate with the threat and — our troop safety — not the politics or optics. This is also going well.
3. Build the Wall, settle immigration, and start off our foreign policy with the rule of law obeyed by all on this topic. Success is TDB.
4. Renegotiate trade deals stacked against the U.S., success is TBD.
5. Israel is the tricky spot in foreign affairs because Iran, the JCPoA, Islamic Terrorism, Iran’s missile program, Turkey, Erdogan, the Palestinians, the GCC, SA, Assad, it all comes together here.
Because all these line intersect at Iran — I think Iran is the key to unlocking Peace in the Middle East.
I think the Israeli’s do as well.
The problem is, with the Ayatollah’s making final decisions there, we can never count on any agreement they make. Sharia Law, which they obey, dictates this be so. Which is why the JCPoA is such a problematic document. Obeyed, in spirit and letter, down to what happens after the agreement expires — and the world will breathe easy. I just doubt that will happen.
Anyway, here’s part of a paper by Dr. Singer, from the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, on why the Iran nuclear question isn’t settled and may not be for another decade at least.
By Dr. Max Singer
It is a misapprehension that the Iran nuclear agreement, or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA), will allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons after 10 years have elapsed. In fact, an item in the JCPoA’s general provisions states that the plan “will ensure the exclusively peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear program.” Another item reads: “Iran reaffirms that under no circumstances will Iran ever seek, develop, or acquire nuclear weapons.”
The world powers that negotiated the deal agreed to lift the sanctions against Iran only on the stated assumption that Iran never had, and never would have, a nuclear weapons program. Although it is unlikely that any parties to the deal believed Iran’s nuclear program was only for peaceful purposes, they all found it diplomatically convenient to assert that it was.
This diplomatic prevarication means that any time evidence is found suggesting Iran is trying to produce or acquire nuclear weapons, the US may feign shock at having been deceived. And without violating what it agreed to in the nuclear deal, the US can announce that it will do whatever is necessary to ensure that Iran will not succeed in acquiring nuclear weapons.
Nothing in the agreement precludes the countries that signed the deal from acting to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Since Tehran had insisted that it did not have a nuclear weapons program, the regime cannot claim that its pursuit of nuclear weapons was authorized by the JCPoA.
The problem of stopping Iran is therefore not a legal one. The question is whether the US and other powers have the tools to compel Iran to abort its nuclear weapons program, and whether they have the will to use them. Are the great democracies sufficiently determined to impose decisive economic sanctions, or to encourage internal opposition to the Iranian revolutionary regime? What about military force?
The US, Germany, France, and Britain no doubt have the power to end Iran’s nuclear weapons program. If they cut off all communication with the country – flights, telephone, internet, banking – along with the countries that would follow their leadership, Iran would be compelled to yield, regardless of what China and Russia might do. And Beijing and Moscow would not be enthusiastic about standing against the West’s actions to defend Iran.
The democracies don’t need to commit to changing the Iranian regime, or to collaborate actively with Iranian dissidents. Even moderate political and social support by the US and Europe for Iran’s internal opposition could scare the regime into postponing its efforts to get nuclear weapons.
No military attack, even by the US, could reliably destroy all Iranian weapons production facilities, but complete destruction is not necessary. Partial elimination might be enough to convince the regime that rebuilding would not be worthwhile because they could be attacked again. And a successful attack could undermine the Iranian security services’ control over the population.
The decisive question is how determined the US and the other democracies are to prevent Iran from having nuclear weapons. If they have the will to do so, they have the necessary power, and the nuclear deal is not an impediment.