What Would Be Most Likely to Unravel the Iran Nuclear Agreement

February 4, 2016 Topic: Iran Region: Middle East Blog Brand: Paul Pillar Tags: IranNuclearSecurityDefenseTehran

What Would Be Most Likely to Unravel the Iran Nuclear Agreement

Preserving the accord will require much attention and effort.

Those in Congress and elsewhere who do not want to kill the agreement can better resist the political pressures to support dangerous legislation by repeating a couple of basic points, in addition to the value and importance of the agreement itself. One is to be blunt in calling agreement-killing legislation what it is and to call out the promoters of such measures regarding their real intentions. The other is to remind everyone, as the history of the nuclear issue itself so clearly demonstrates, that unless economic punishment is linked to some specific requirement that it is plausible Iran could ever accept and could be reached through negotiation, the punishment is only a gesture that achieves nothing and hurts everyone, including ourselves.

Paul R. Pillar is a contributing editor to the National Interest. He is also a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a nonresident senior fellow at Georgetown University’s Center for Security Studies.

Image: Wikimedia Commons/seyyed shabodin vajedi.