This agreement fails to address the wider political issuesby David Patrikarakos / July 14, 2015 / Leave a comment
“This deal offers an opportunity to move in a new direction; we should seize it.” Bold words. And spoken by a US President who has, since his first attempts to reach out to Iran in 2008, faced enormous criticism, both domestically and internationally, for what has been since its beginnings the central foreign policy goal of his administration: détente with Iran.
That has not come yet. A nuclear deal is just that: the wider problems between Iran and the West have not yet been resolved. Iran has not become Switzerland. To his credit, President Obama seems aware of this fact. “Our differences are real and the history between our nations cannot be ignored…but it is possible to change,” he continued.
But if the last round of nuclear talks are anything to go by change is going to come slowly. The original deadline for a deal was 30th June—a wishful date, as it turned out. It took, in fact, 18 days to reach an agreement, which is hardly surprising given what was at stake.
The P5+1 (the five Security Council powers plus Germany) set out to do one simple thing: to stop, as far as possible, an Iranian bomb. Iran has two paths to a nuclear bomb. The first is uranium enrichment at its Natanz and Fordow sites; and the second: plutonium production, which would take place at its Heavy Water facility at Arak, once it is completed.