Netanyahu: Can’t Reverse Sanctions Cuts

by Patrick Brennan

This morning, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu explained why a partial deal with Iran, one that reduces sanctions but makes little progress toward ending the country’s nuclear program, makes little sense: If sanctions are reduced but Iran doesn’t follow through, the concessions can’t be easily reversed.

“You’ll get investors and companies scrambling one after another to get a deal with Iran,” Netanyahu said, arguing that an economy like Iran’s operates on future expectations, so even if the sanctions aren’t substantially reduced, weakening them will help Iran recover and totally eliminate the leverage the West has built up for the last few years.

CNN host Candy Crowley, in response to Netanyahu’s line of argument, played a clip of President Obama saying the exact opposite, claiming that if Iran doesn’t adhere to the agreement, the U.S. can just “dial sanctions right back up.” The prime minister responded by saying that he doesn’t doubt President Obama’s “intent” would be to restore sanctions, but that he’d find it impossible to do so.

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