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What will happen to the Iran nuclear deal under Raisi?

Incoming Iranian regime president Ebrahim Raisi will pose serious challenges to nuclear talks between Tehran and world powers
Incoming Iranian regime president Ebrahim Raisi will pose serious challenges to nuclear talks between Tehran and world powers

Analysis by PMOI/MEK

July 14, 2021—The Iranian regime’s nuclear program has a decades-long history of deception, duplicity, and unfulfilled promises. On numerous occasions, the regime has proved that it does not deserve the trust of the international community and has reneged on its commitments.

Now, as the regime is in the process of another round of talks with world powers over its nuclear program, the question is, how far can the international community trust Tehran to reach an agreement and stay true to its word. This question has become even more pertinent as the regime has appointed Ebrahim Raisi, a notorious mass murderer, as its president.

“The nuclear deal will only be possible and can only survive if the new Iranian leadership will allow the International Atomic Energy Agency to do its job and I highly doubt that Raisi will be supportive of nuclear inspections,” Guy Verhofstadt, a Member of the European Parliament and a former Prime Minister of Belgium, said at the Free Iran World Summit on July 12. “We should not expect Iran to open up to the West. Raisi in fact hates our democratic values and let us not forget that he is under U.S. sanctions over a past that includes the extrajudicial killings of thousands of political prisoners.”

 

 

Verhofstadt observation is further confirmed by a new report by Reuters, which states Raisi “plans to adopt ‘a harder line’ in the talks” and “show "less flexibility and demand more concessions" from Washington such as keeping a chain of advanced uranium enrichment centrifuges in place and insisting on the removal of human rights and terrorism related U.S. sanctions.”

A narrative often repeated by proponents of the policy of appeasement toward the regime is that the priority should be to re-enter the nuclear deal signed in 2015. But other politicians who spoke at the Free Iran World Summit also warned about the implications of Raisi’s presidency and the often-overlooked threats that stem from the regime’s nature.

“The regime is cheated on every agreement it has made, the NPT, the safeguards agreement, the additional protocol, and the JCPOA, even before the U.S. withdrawal,” said Robert Joseph, Former U.S. Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security. “Who can believe that the regime does not now have a covert program, something it has maintained for 40 years? Who would sign yet another agreement with a party that has cheating in its DNA?”

 

 

Marc Ginsberg, U.S. Ambassador to Morocco (1994-1998), called the dream of solving all problems through the reinstatement of the JCPOA as a “myth.”

“All of the signatories to support must ask themselves and objectively ask themselves can they pretend to permit Iran to claim that it is abiding by an agreement that it violated from day one?” Ginsberg said. “The deception that continues to be propagated by Iran that Iran will do anything and everything to avoid a nuclear weapons development program is a sham while it inexorably continues its march to develop a nuclear weapon.”

 

 

John Bolton, U.S. National Security Advisor from 2018 to 2019, warned about the often-repeated mistakes of trying to curb the regime’s malign behavior by giving it concessions.

“The selection of Raisi… proves that making concessions to the regime will not change their behavior,” Bolton said. “They view concessions by the West as a sign of weakness, and you know historically it is not strength that is provocative when viewed by authoritarian regimes; weakness is provocative. So, the more weakness we show, the more likely the ayatollah will cause trouble.”

 

 

But what should be the right policy toward Iran’s nuclear program? The speakers at the Free Iran conference touched on two key themes: keeping the pressure on the regime and aiming at its Achilles’ heel, which is its human rights dossier.

“I think it would be a fatal mistake to only focus on the nuclear threat and regard human rights violations as a secondary issue,” Verhofstadt warned. “We must pursue a dual strategy in which we put human rights higher on the agenda while trying to establish a safer environment in the Middle East.”

The speakers also stressed that the final solution to the nuclear program and the other threats of the Iranian regime is the invest in the people of Iran, the first and foremost detractors of the expensive and anti-Iranian nuclear program and the main enemy of the regime.

“The United States should not lift its economic sanctions,” Bolton said. “They should continue in place and we should aid the people of Iran who are legitimate opponents of the regime who seek nothing more than freedom and the opportunity to pick their own government.”

Ultimately, the world must recognize that this is a regime that has built its power on death and destruction. And the nuclear threat, along with all other malign activities of the regime will only go away when the regime is overthrown.

“There is only one solution that is left that will work and that is regime change in Iran. Everything else has been tried,” Senator Joseph Lieberman said. “It is obvious that the regime itself will not change. So, the people of Iran, with the support of all of us outside of Iran, must change the regime.”

 

 

“Senator Lieberman is right. There is only one solution and that is regime change,” Robert Joseph said. “Of course, we must prevent them from having to nuclear weapons, and we can best do that by applying real pressure and letting the people prevail over the dictatorship.”