5 September 2017   Leave a comment

US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, gave a speech to the American Enterprise Institute in which she argued that the nuclear agreement with Iran was flawed, laying the groundwork for scrapping the agreement.   The agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, was forged between the 5 Permanent Members of the UN Security Council (China, France, Great Britain, Russia, and the United States), Germany, and Iran.  It is a ten-year agreement limiting Iran’s ability to process uranium into fuel for a nuclear bomb and was signed on 14 July 2015.  Every six months the International Atomic Energy Agency and the signatories must verify that Iran has adhered to the agreement, and the agreement has been verified twice.  US President Trump, however, argued as a candidate and as President, that the agreement is not in the US national interest because it does not limit Iran’s support for organizations such as Hezbollah and Iran’s development of missile technology.

Those issues, however, are not part of the agreement and it is doubtful that the other signatories to the agreement will pull out of it because of US concerns.  If the US does drop out of the agreement and imposes sanctions on Iran, then Iran will undoubtedly pull out of the agreement.  Given the policies taken by the US vis-a-vis North Korea, Iran would most likely pull out of the Non-Proliferation Agreement and perhaps restart its weapons program.  That course of action would be a disaster for the world.

Iran’s Nuclear Capabilities


Hurricane Irma appears to be the strongest Atlantic storm ever recorded and the Caribbean will likely suffer terribly from the storm.  The Washington Post has some extraordinary videos of the storm, showing detail in the structure of the storm that I have never seen before.  I really wish I could separate events like Irma from my apprehensions about climate change–there really is no scientific basis for a connection–but I fall into the trap too easily.


Russian President Putin has indicated that Russia will not support additional sanctions against North Korea, signaling the end of unanimity on the UN Security Council which had, up to this point, supported sanctions against the country for its nuclear program.   The shift in Russian policy will most likely be paralleled by China.  The US therefore can no longer rely on the support of the Security Council for any additional actions against North Korea.  If, as anticipated, North Korea conducts a missile test this coming Saturday, the US will need to figure out an alternative response to the perceived threat.

Posted September 5, 2017 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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