The Iran deal is dead. Long live the Iran deal

Source: Hot Air

This is the point in the story when we should probably summon Dr. McCoy to say, ‘he’s dead, Jim.’ The “he” in question would be the Iran nuclear deal, known around the White House as the JCPOA. The secretive, four-party talks that have been going on for well over a year never really came close to producing a functional deal, though most of us never heard any of the details. But now, at least according to one Trump administration official who was privy to the process, the entire thing is shut down with “no path forward.” The culprit is supposedly the ongoing protests in Iran over the death of a woman who failed to properly wear her head covering at the hands of the Morality Police. (Free Beacon)

The Biden administration’s negotiations over a revamped version of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal are dead as the result of massive anti-regime protests that have swept across the Islamic Republic, according to the former Trump administration’s State Department spokeswoman.

“I don’t see any room or any space for [the administration] to build back into” the long-stalled negotiations, Morgan Ortagus, who served under former secretary of state Mike Pompeo, said during a panel discussion Friday afternoon at the Richard Nixon Foundation’s Grand Strategy Summit in Washington, D.C. “It would be a political disaster in the U.S. and a disaster for the people of Iran who are rejecting this regime.”

How could the Biden administration “financially empower the very oppressors of the women and teenagers we’re supposed to be standing up for and standing with?” Ortagus asked.

The diplomatic collapse has brought another tender subject back to the forefront. The protesters in Iran have been openly calling for regime change, as have sympathetic Iranian groups here in the United States. But thus far, the Biden administration has been critical of the Iranian regime’s abuses against women, but they have failed to go the full distance and similarly call for regime change. If the deal is fully dead, perhaps they will now, but it’s not a stretch to suspect that Joe Biden held his tongue for fear of further antagonizing the Iranian mullahs when he was desperate to ink a deal.

Focusing the discussion on regime change at this point is probably a dead end also. We’ve been through episodes like this in the past and the Iranians always manage to crush any dissent among their own people sooner or later. And the women of Iran will likely be paying the heaviest price as a result.

Assuming this analysis is true, I don’t see any reason to look at this as particularly bad news. Iran has never fully honored any of the agreements it’s made in the past. The only reason Joe Bide was so fired up to get this done was that Donald Trump had pulled us out of the deal and Biden had vowed to reverse all Trump policies, including the ones that had proven to be good ideas.

The few secrets that slipped out to the media during these negotiations revealed that Biden’s Iran envoy, Robert Malley, was a terrible negotiator who was in far over his head. He offered Iran so much on day one of the secret talks that they couldn’t believe their good fortune. But they assumed that was just an opening offer and they would be able to get more. Malley had nothing else to offer, so the Iranians kept walking away.

It may be time for the Iranian nuclear facilities to have another “accident” in the near future. Whether that is another cyberattack or just some of their centrifuges blowing up doesn’t really matter. But that would require Biden giving a thumbs up to the plan and I’m not sure how confident we can be of that happening.