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What to Know About the Iran Nuclear Deal

by Alana Johnson

iran 2

Photo via GovBundle: Iranian Law Makers Burning the US Flag, after Trump withdraws from deal.

On May 8th, the President of the United States withdrew from the Iran Nuclear Deal, with the goal of once again imposing sanctions on Iran to destroy their economy. I think every person should be educated on the issues raised from his decision so I’m going to answer four questions: Why the deal started, what it does, why Trump hates it, and what’s gonna happen now that it’s gone.

Why did the Iran deal start in the first place?

Explaining the long relationship between Iran and western nations pre-Iran Deal could fill a book on it’s own, so we will focus on the direct factors leading to the deal. The Iranian government was supporting violent rebels in Yemen, Bashar Al-Assad in Syria, and actually providing funds to terrorist groups. On top of this, Iran was secretly building a nuclear program. After this fact became known to the international community, it was the final straw. US, UK, France, Germany, and Russia all placed economic sanctions on Iran, crippling its economy. Iran’s economy was on a downward spiral, so they met with these nations hoping to get rid of the sanctions and rebuild their economy.

What does the deal do? What are the terms within it?

Nations agreed to lift sanctions off Iran if they agreed to stop their nuclear program. The deal states Iran is not able to enrich uranium to weapons grade for 15 years, and they were forced to reduce their 19,000 nuclear centrifuges to just a little above 5,000. To put this in perspective, the deal made it impossible to enrich uranium above 3.67%  when 90% enrichment is needed to create an effective weapon. Each one of these terms makes it virtually impossible to create a nuclear weapon. Additionally, the deal stated if Iran violated any of the terms, sanctions would snap back into place instantly. There were hardliners, both in America and Iran, furious at the deal, but overall it keeps the Middle East safe and Iran’s economy in tact.

This sounds like a good deal…why does Trump hate it so much?

Trump is under the impression we do a poor job of actually checking in and making sure the requirements are being met. In fact, he has claimed in many speeches Iranians have the ability to “self-inspect” their facilities. This is flat out false. In reality the deal allows for regular monitoring of all declared nuclear sites, some with 24 hour surveillance cameras. All of this upkeep is conducted by the IAEA, the international group responsible for safe and peaceful development within the nuclear field. And despite Trump repeatedly telling the American people the Iranians are “lying” about the status of the weapons, the IAEA has published TEN reports of successful checkups of the nuclear facilities, confirming Iran is complying with the deal.

Another issue Trump sees within the deal is we have a 24 day wait period before we can inspect the facility, and they will have enough time to remove the uranium. Again, Trump is highly misinformed. Inspectors have 100% full access to declared nuclear sites, but not to undeclared sites where they suspect activity. This is what Trump is referring to, for the deal allows the undeclared site 24 days before the inspection will commence. It is an impossible feat to remove all traces of this extremely powerful, radioactive isotope in less than a month.

The final issue Trump brings up again and again is that the deal ends in 10 years, so Iran, in Trump’s words, is able to just “run out the clock.”  Even if this was the case, Trump pulling out of the deal means they no longer have to wait. If Trump were to have stayed in the deal, there would be ten years to consider what to do when the deal expires. Now there is likely zero. There are many critics of the deal, Trump being one, but all the issues that he has with it are now almost impossible to deal with or adjust now that the US is no longer a signatory of the Iran Deal.

What’s gonna happen now that Trump has pulled out?

Although the deal is still in tact between Iran and the other signatories, the Iranian government claimed they can’t trust these other nations and went so far as to state the US made a “big mistake” dropping out. Trump will soon reimpose sanctions, once again hurting Iran’s economy. The negative possibilities are endless. For example, other countries, such as North Korea, may refuse to make nonproliferation treaties with the US after watching them pull out of the Iran deal after only 3 years. If the deal is dissolved fully, a nuclear arms in the Middle East is likely to commence. It is really upsetting that Trump pulled out of the deal because leaders all around the world agree it is extremely beneficial to all members involved. Although it is possible there are flaws within the document, it has shown to be successful in keeping nuclear weapons out of Iran’s hands.

Trump pulled out of the deal based on facts that are not really facts at all. He thinks the Nuclear Deal is a horrible agreement, but hasn’t offered any real, viable alternatives, putting international security, and all of us, at risk. Trump’s decision has isolated the US from it’s closest allies, and upset Iran. The US has been at war with the Middle East for far too long, and Trump’s careless decisions are just extending the never ending cycle of war.

Bernie Sanders tweeted this on May 8th, and I think it best sums up what Trump has done to the American Nation:

 

“Real American power is not shown by our ability to blow
things up, but by our ability to forge international
consensus around shared problems. That is what the
Iran agreement did. Today President Trump put us on
a very different, more dangerous path.”

– Bernie Sanders

 

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A 15 year old musician and film-enthusiast stationed in Orange County, California. Described as fiery and extremely comfortable in her own skin. If she isn't watching liberal talk shows, she's covering, creating, or recording music. Believes expression of any kind is art.

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