When the negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 got started, they were mostly considered a way to build support for a war against Iran. No progress was made, and officials used the lack of progress to present Iran as unreasonable.
Years of negotiations, however, have meant a lot of progress, and a deal now seems not only theoretically possible, but potentially fairly close to being finalized.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was among the first to recognize that a deal might happened, and saw this as a potentially huge threat to his would-be war. He’s now promising to do everything and anything in his power to sabotage the deal.
In the past, US negotiators trying to reassure Israel by saying they’d never allow a deal that give Iran a possibility of making nuclear weapons were to be perceived as a pledge of no deal at all. Israeli officials then were simply warning against a “bad deal,” while giving a nominal imprimatur for negotiations.
Now, those pledges are being taken at face value, and Netanyahu is presenting anything short of the collapse of the talks as a “threat” to Israel. It’s always been fairly obvious that Netanyahu considered any deal a “bad deal” in and of itself.
But Netanyahu is now making that position entirely public, and putting himself directly at odds with negotiation as such, while trying to campaign for next month’s elections on a platform centered around sabotaging US negotiations with Iran.
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