Iran Deal Opponents to Trump: Enforce, Don’t Tear Up Nuclear Deal

Long-Time Critics Says Scrapping Deal Would Do More Harm Than Good

Large numbers of influential hawks in both parties were outspoken opponents of the P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran, and went on to try to destroy the deal in Congress, though President Obama ultimately vetoed the bills, keeping the deal intact.

Those opponents of the deal have been railing against it ever since, but with the election of President-elect Donald Trump, a number of them are now conceding that Trump should not attempt to “tear up” the deal, and should instead focus on enforcement.

One Trump adviser has already indicated that enforcement is the plan, though during the campaign Trump made conflicting statements on the matter. Either way, those who were desperate to stop the P5+1 deal seem to agree that it’s not really practical.

There are a few reasons for that, the largest being that the US is only one of seven signatories to the deal, and as such they can’t “cancel” it in any practical way. Even if they did manage to undermine it bad enough to collapse the deal, the backlash would be overwhelmingly centered on the US for doing so.

Moreover, despite many of those hawks railing against the idea of unfreezing Iranian assets internationally, those assets have been unfrozen for awhile now, and the US can’t exactly ask Iran to return the funds to them because they want to renege on the deal.

A year after the implementation of an already finalized pact, it’s a bit late for the US to decide they don’t want to negotiate, and practically speaking, any attempts by the Trump Administration to undermine the deal are likely to do more to hurt US diplomatic standing than they are to threaten the deal or Iran’s international rapprochement.

Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of

  • curmudgeonvt

    “…likely to do more to hurt US diplomatic standing…”

    The assumption in the article is that the US does still have diplomatic standing. I suggest that the US doesn’t still have the diplomatic standing it used to have.

    Instead, the US has a cudgel that it uses wantonly and indiscriminately to keep friends, allies, and slackers in line with whatever agenda it is pursuing at the time.

    But, FWIW, that’s just this old curmudgeon’s opinion.

  • August 11, 2015 Retired generals and admirals back Iran nuclear deal in letter

    Three dozen retired generals and admirals released an open letter Tuesday supporting the Iran nuclear deal and urging Congress to do the same.

  • Jan 31, 2016 Trip to Iran January 2016

  • unam_sanctum

    This is Trump’s chance to behave like a sensible adult.
    John McCain and Mitt Romney would have had us in a war with Iran instead.

  • joe

    How about leaving Iran alone and minding “America first ” business?

  • wars r u.s.

    By “enforcing” they mean that no matter what Iran does it won’t be good enough. That way they don’t have to explain themselves for skewering the deal right now and can claim Iran’s nonconformance in the future. This won’t have a good ending.