Noted commentator Ehud Yaari has asserted that the Obama Administration has in recent weeks conceded on all the major bones of contention in an effort to successfully complete the P5+1 talks with Iran.
According to Yaari, Israel’s most respected Middle East analyst, the deal was reached because the Americans “have made a series of capitulations over the past two to three weeks in almost every key aspect that was being debated.”
Yaari said that even those in the US who had supported the agreement with Iran “admit that it is worse than they thought.” Now, he said, the ball is in the court of Democratic lawmakers who have to decide whether to support their president as he seeks to secure Congressional approval, or to join the vocal Republican opposition to an agreement.
Crucially, Yaari asserts that this will include controls on the powers of the IAEA mount surprise inspections, which may make the deal effectively uninforcable according to experts.
One major concession, Yaari said, is the issue of inspections of Iranian nuclear sites, which has long been a sticking point in the negotiations. According to Yaari, the US negotiators have given in to an Iranian demand that inspections are “managed” — in other words, there will be no surprise visits, only those that are pre-arranged and approved by the Iranian regime.
Despite repeated news reports claiming that a deal is virtually complete, Iran appears to still be reluctant to sign a deal with the P5+1, despite yet another deadline looming, because are also demanding that their nuclear programme be declared legal in a Security Council resolution. Reuters:
Iran's Fars news agency reported that Iran was pushing for the draft U.N. Security Council resolution under discussion as part of the deal to state explicitly that Tehran's nuclear program is legal.
Comments from both senior Republican and Democratic senators on Sunday suggested that any final deal would also face tough scrutiny in the U.S. Congress.
Concerns extend beyond that of nuclear proliferation. Last Month General Martin Dempsey (American Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman), expressed alarm at the consequences of dropping sanctions against Iran. Dempsey argued that it would fund a more substantive terrorist endeavour, which is causing issues in various parts of the Middle East, most recently with Iran’s alleged involvement in the funding of major attacks on Egyptian troops in the Sinai region.
The P5+1 deal can scarely be deemed anything other than the hollowest of victories, with Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif suggesting that a nuclear deal would pave the way for future co-operation with Iran to rid the Middle East of violent extremism – a remarkable suggestion in view of the Islamist regime’s seminal role in so violently stirring the Sunni-Shia divide!