The latest round in their campaign was U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley’s disingenuous and falsehood-filled speech at the American Enterprise Institute last week. The speech is useful in one sense: it provides a handy summary of just about every creative and mendacious argument that die-hard opponents of the JCPOA have been cooking up since the agreement was signed. Unfortunately, it is neither an accurate guide to the agreement, to its current status, nor more importantly, to U.S. interests.
Among other things, Haley claimed — falsely — that the deal “gave Iran what it wanted up-front, in exchange for temporary promises to deliver what we want.” The truth is about 180 degrees from this claim: Iran gave up enriched uranium, destroyed 13,000 centrifuges, dismantled the Arak reactor, let the U.N. install monitoring devices, implemented the NPT Additional Protocol, and a host of other measures — all before the United States or anyone else began lifting sanctions.
When facts and logic fail them, opponents of the JCPOA resurrect the myth of a “better deal.” Having failed to stop Obama’s original negotiation, they now claim decertifying the deal is the first step to persuading Iran and the other members of JCPOA to agree to major revisions or new restrictions. As I’ve written before, this is a vain, even laughable, hope.
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