Philadelphia Tribune Editorial– When the United States and five other world powers reached a landmark accord that halted Iran’s nuclear program it gave hope to the world.
The deal is aimed at preventing Iran from assembling a nuclear weapons arsenal.
One would think that a deal that stops Iran from building a nuclear weapon and averts a regional war in the Middle East would be welcomed news to all.
But President Donald Trump is opposed to the deal.
Trump is expected to overrule his top national security advisers and decline to certify the Iran nuclear agreement, according to reports.
By declining to certify Iran’s compliance, Trump would return the issue to Congress to decide whether to re-impose punitive economic sanctions. Even among Republicans, there is not much eagerness to reopen this debate.
The move would allow Trump to tell supporters that he has disavowed the accord. But the move would also isolate the United States from its allies if it sabotaged a deal with which Iran is viewed as complying. Trump repeatedly ridiculed the accord during the 2016 presidential campaign and vowed to end it.
Trump has not yet formally announced that he would seek to “decertify” the agreement. He faces an Oct. 15 deadline, and he has made little secret of his intentions, most recently when he declared at the United Nations that the agreement was “embarrassing to the United States.”
Congress should not re-impose sanctions, which could undo the Iran nuclear deal. While not perfect the deal is better than no deal at all. Attempting to get all parties to agree to a new deal jeopardizes having any agreement.
Backing out of the deal would free Iran to begin producing uranium and reprocessing plutonium immediately, not after 13 years, as is stipulated in the agreement.
Trump should certify the agreement and uphold the deal because it is in national security interests of the United States and would prevent a race for nuclear arms in the Middle East.