Friday, August 28, 2015

grudging support for the Iran nuclear deal

I'm encouraged by the report that former Defense Secretary Bob Gates has publicly supported approval of the Iran nuclear deal. He says that the agreement is flawed but that the consequences of rejection are worse.
“We must now face the reality that there are serious consequences to voting down the agreement or pulling out of it,” he said. “I think we swallow hard, acknowledge our negotiators got out-negotiated, and that we have a flawed deal, and make the best of it.”
And for those who think America could obtain tougher conditions if the agreement is killed by Congress, UN Ambassador Samantha Power has a strong response.
First, if the United States rejects this deal, we would instantly isolate ourselves from the countries that spent nearly two years working with American negotiators to hammer out its toughest provisions.
Second, well beyond the consequences vis-a-vis Iran itself, rejecting this deal would likely undermine our ability to use sanctions in other circumstances.
Finally, walking away from this deal may well make it harder for us to rally multilateral coalitions necessary to confront other grave threats—whether those threats come from a regime armed with a nuclear weapon, a deadly virus, or a group of foreign terrorist fighters.
Fred Kaplan has another fine piece defending the comprehensiveness of the Iran deal, especially compared with what the world accepted as sufficient in the bad old days of the Cold War.

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