Monday, August 28, 2017

How to Get Out of the Iran Nuclear Deal

By John R. Bolton

A May 17, 2016 meeting between then U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif in Vienna, Austria, to discuss the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. (Image source: U.S. State Department)
Although candidate Donald Trump repeatedly criticized Barack Obama's Iran nuclear agreement, his administration has twice decided to remain in the deal. It so certified to Congress, most recently in July, as required by law. Before the second certification, Trump asked repeatedly for alternatives to acquiescing yet again in a policy he clearly abhorred. But no such options were forthcoming, despite "a sharp series of exchanges" between the president and his advisers, as the New York Times and similar press reports characterized it.
Many outside the administration wondered how this was possible: Was Trump in control, or were his advisers? Defining a compelling rationale to exit Obama's failed nuclear deal and elaborating a game plan to do so are quite easy. In fact, Steve Bannon asked me in late July to draw up just such a game plan for the president — the option he didn't have — which I did.

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