benami173_JOE KLAMARAFP via Getty Images_iran flag Joe Klamar/AFP via Getty Images

Resolving the Iran Conundrum

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken believes that Iran is only months away from being able to produce enough fissile material to build a nuclear weapon. Mitigating this threat and addressing Iran's broader destabilizing activities in the Middle East calls for a two-phase plan.

TEL AVIV – Former US President Donald Trump’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran utterly failed to enhance regional or global security. His successor, Joe Biden, must not make the same mistake.

The centerpiece of Trump’s Iran policy was his unilateral withdrawal of the United States from the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action – widely known as the Iran nuclear deal – in 2018. This move, directly and aggressively promoted by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, enabled the US to re-impose severe sanctions on Iran.

At the time, Iran was in full compliance with the JCPOA’s conditions, and it remained in compliance for a full year after Trump’s decision took effect, to give Europe a chance to uphold its pledge to bypass US sanctions. But Europe didn’t follow through, so Iran began to break the rules.

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