Lying Pays Off for Iran

by Elliott Abrams

This agreement rewards Iran for a decade of lying to the IAEA and hiding its nuclear program, because it essentially accepts Iran’s enrichment program. The years of Iranian deceit of the IAEA and defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions have paid off.

Line two of the agreement, “Iran reaffirms that under no circumstances will Iran ever seek or develop any nuclear weapon,” is after all false. We know they have sought to build a warhead, and this agreement does not force them to come clean or answer all the questions the IAEA has put. Even David Sanger in the New York Times says this: “Iran did not agree to all of the intrusive inspection regime that the IAEA had said was needed to ensure that the Iranian program is peaceful.”

Unfortunately there is no reason to believe the comprehensive agreement that is being sought will solve these problems, and will force Iran to abandon enrichment, dismantle Arak or convert it to a light-water reactor, or remove centrifuges.

One has to wonder if a better deal would have been possible had the administration not taken “all options” off the table — that is, had Iran believed there was a real military threat–and had the United States not seemed so very desperate for a deal. I hope Congress will adopt additional sanctions to be imposed if the coming talks break down or if Iran cheats on this deal, because additional pressure is needed. 


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