Opinion

Iran nuclear deal: The return of the bad is worse

August 29, 2022
Iran nuclear deal: The return of the bad is worse
Abdullah Bin Bjad Al-Otaibi



THERE is nothing new in the European Union-drafted text to restore their 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran, the signing of which seems to be imminent. It is the same previous agreement that Barack Obama adopted and signed in 2015 while he was the US president.

It was indeed “the worst agreement in history,” as Donald Trump described it, and the return to the old bad deal would prove to be the worst approach in course of time.

Europe exerted great efforts to revive the nuclear deal with Iran at a time when the continent is passing through one of its worst historical moments, and is searching for a place in the world, after the decline of its role and influence following the major challenges imposed on it by Washington vis-à-vis the Russian-Ukrainian war. The conflict left the whole of Europe under the mercy of Russia, especially in the field of energy with the impending winter.

For its part, the United States of America, since the assumption of the presidency by Joe Biden, has been insisting on reactivating the nuclear agreement with Iran. The Biden administration has turned down the decision of Trump, his predecessor, to abandon the deal. The new administration has been desperate to restore the deal ever since Biden’s entry into the White House, in a hasty and strange political strategy. The administration considers returning to this flawed agreement as a victory, despite opposition from the Republicans on the domestic front.

Creating crises appears to be a new policy for the West. It was the Western countries, which pushed Ukraine into an all-out war with Russia, and those who harassed China over Taiwan were also the same countries.

It seems that the West is determined to renew creating crises around the world and in the Middle East in particular. The ongoing move to restore the nuclear agreement with Iran — without taking into account of the legitimate concerns of the Arab countries — is one of the best examples for this.

Perhaps, politics is based on serving vested interests, and the contemporary evidence for this is the desire of some Western countries not to allow any successful experiment of real renaissance happening in leading Arab countries and this was manifested in their eagerness to keep the Arabs in permanent political and military conflicts. They also completely disregard their regional opponents, especially the Iranian regime and the Arab countries that are meekly obedient to its will. This is through decades-long policies that accelerated with the 2015 nuclear deal and slowed down with Trump’s rejection of it during his presidency. The return of this nuclear agreement seems imminent.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE are examples of the most successful and the most aspirational models of strong modern states. Both these countries are now being targeted on multiple levels and in various fields along with their allies at the Arab and regional levels. Anyone can discern this when he examines a number of decisions and policies that are based on this approach and are taken in a conscious and determined way.

It is inevitable to understand this approach before working out any plans to confront it. Allowing Iran to acquire nuclear weapons, even if it is on a deferred basis, is an opening for international nuclear armament. It is obviously a mistake if anyone in Washington and Western capitals thinks that countries in the region shall remain silent about this dangerous trend. Similarly, those who think that the spread of nuclear weapons can be controlled later in any way are also erroneous.

The apprehensions of the leading Arab countries regarding the revival of the Iranian nuclear agreement are totally substantiated. They are not limited to Iran’s nuclear weapons alone, but also linked to interference in the internal affairs of other countries and the spread of fundamentalist and terrorist militias and organizations. Moreover, these are obvious in Iran’s policies of expansion and the extension of influence, apart from instances of firing ballistic missiles that tamper regional security without any international justification for this.

All these are Iranian tendencies that will enjoy generous Western support in terms of billions of dollars once the bad nuclear agreement is signed again. Consequently, the region will witness renewed chaos with all elements of terrorism and strategies for stabilizing chaos in the near future.

The challenges of the Iranian regime will not only confine to the countries of the region, but will move to all countries of the world, including the Western ones. With the spread of the approach of creating crises internationally, some policies in the coming years will be characterized by more hostility and rudeness due to the escalation of international and regional conflicts. Many people will suffer its consequences, including those in the West. There is no doubt in it.

— Abdullah Al-Otaibi is a Saudi writer. This article was originally published in Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.


August 29, 2022
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