Less than a month ago, President Trump admitted that Iran was in compliance with the P5+1 nuclear deal. It was clear he wasn’t happy with it, and reports were that the admission came after a bitter fight with his cabinet, who warned him against falsely claiming Iran wasn’t complying.
Even though literally nothing has happened between then and now with respect to the deal itself, President Trump today declared Iran “not in compliance” in the course of his vacation at a golf course in New Jersey.
Trump didn’t offer any details on what Iran wasn’t complying with, likely because the IAEA, responsible for actually keeping track of the deal, continues to certify that Iran is in compliance. Trump was therefore uncomfortable with providing details, but as usual was quite comfortable with the threats.
Trump insisted Iran needed to take action to get themselves into compliance, though naturally we have no idea what that action would be, mostly since Iran is already in compliance as far as everyone else is concerned, and threatened “very strong things” would happen if Iran didn’t comply with his demand. Again, he offered no details on what he’s threatening or what he’s demanding, though he did condemn President Obama for making the deal in the first place, reiterating how opposed he is to the nuclear deal in general.
Which is really the key here. President Trump has wanted to withdraw from the deal from the start, but his cabinet has warned him that the US could face diplomatic fallout if they unilaterally withdraw from the hard negotiated deal. Trump, then, is trying to manufacture an excuse for withdrawing where none exists, and seems to hope rote repetition of the allegation of noncompliance will be sufficient.