“Sure I’d like a better deal – I’d like a pony, too, but it’s not realistic,” says Jeffrey Lewis, director of nonproliferation studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, Calif. “The most important thing now is to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon in the next 10 to 15 years, and this deal does that.”
Director of Snark, I'd say. What say you, Mr. Dubowitz?
Iran could go ahead and implement its commitments under the deal, he says. It could also “abandon its commitments” and escalate it nuclear program. Or it could try to do both, complying with certain commitments while abandoning others – and thus attempt to divide world powers while advancing its nuclear program.
But under any of those scenarios, Dubowitz says, the US could work to “persuade the Europeans to join the US” in demanding a renegotiation of key parts of the deal.
On a cold day in Hell.
Yet many regional experts say that prospects for wooing the Europeans to join the US in pressing for a tougher deal, if Congress rejects the one now before it, are dim.
“European and Asian partners would feel frustrated and misled” in the wake of a US rejection of the deal, Jon Alterman, a Middle East expert at Washington’s Center for Strategic and International Studies, told the House Armed Services Committee this week. European allies would likely join countries like China and India in investing in Iran’s energy sector, he added.
“Broadly, the action would create distance between the US and the world and diminish distance between Iran and the world,” Dr. Alterman added, “after more than a decade when the reverse was the case.”
Or you could just put it that way.
“We had a ‘better deal’ in Iraq after 1991 [following the Gulf War], there were no restrictions, inspectors could go where they wanted when they wanted, and that deal wasn’t good enough,” says Dr. Lewis, adding that “we still went to war. So really I don’t believe them when they say they just want a ‘better deal’ this time.”
Other doubters of the sincerity of the seekers of a “better deal” say it’s telling to note that the sponsor of the TV ad campaign demanding a better deal is a group called Citizens for a Nuclear Free Iran, which is backed by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, a pro-Israel organization lobbying Congress hard for the deal’s defeat.
You doubt the sincerity of AIPAC? Yeah, me too.