In his May 13 column on the Iran nuclear deal, I am afraid that Jim Fossel’s “Make America Great Again” hat was cutting off the circulation to his brain.

The reason President Obama used executive orders instead of legislation is that the Republican majority opposed all Obama initiatives.

I see Fossel is fond of Trumpian terms like “bad deal” without supplying evidence. He said, “The deal gave Iran plenty of time to slowly wind down its nuclear activities, over the course of 10 years or more.” Wrong. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action immediately required Iran to stop enriching uranium for weapons and has allowed international inspectors to monitor compliance, which has been excellent. The 10-year term is when parts of the agreement expire, not the time allowed to comply, as Fossel says!

The respected Council on Foreign Relations has supported the JCPOA but now says the accord “has been on the rocks since (Donald) Trump’s election, and the resulting climate of uncertainty spooked many large firms from doing business in Iran.” Gas prices have gone up around 11 percent since March, while Trump was shooting his mouth off over nixing the JCPOA.

Fossel’s statement that “Trump has regained our leverage over the regime in Tehran” is a fantasy. When, in the last 35 years or so, has the U.S. enjoyed any leverage over Iran?

Fossel accuses North Korea of saber-rattling, but who said, “They will be met with fire and fury”? Now that is saber-rattling! The only message this withdrawal sends to North Korea (and the rest of the world) is that the U.S. cannot be trusted.

Rather than assume that Trump’s pullout from the JCPOA will bring Iran to its knees, it is more likely that it will result in a resumption of Iran’s nuclear weapons program and a further weakening of the United States’ standing with its allies, who support the JCPOA.

John Manoush


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