US says ‘max pressure’ on Iran failed, continues policy nonetheless

The administration of US President Joe Biden has acknowledged that Trump’s “maximum pressure” policy against Iran failed, while itself has so far shown unwillingness to undo the former president’s wrongs.

Speaking at a press briefing on Thursday, US State Department spokesman Ned Price said the Trump administration’s maximum pressure policy has failed to achieve each and every single one of its aims.

“I think when you look at the results of maximum pressure, you can only be left with one conclusion,” Price said.

He added, “Maximum pressure was supposed to result in a better deal. It was supposed to cow Tehran and its proxies, it was supposed to isolate Iran from the rest of the world, and it was supposed to leave America’s interests in a better position.”

Price continued to say that in every single one of the issues he raised, the opposite has been true, adding that over the last four years, “we came nowhere close to anything resembling a better deal.”

While criticizing Trump’s failed policy against Iran, he still suggested that the Biden administration will continue to pressure Tehran with closer cooperation with the US’s allies.

“Now, our approach recognizes that maximum pressure accompanied by the lack of diplomatic engagement got us to where we are,” he said. “That is why we are embarking on a different path, one that prioritizes real, principled, clear-eyed diplomacy – clear-eyed diplomacy with our partners and allies.”

Back in May 2018, Trump unilaterally withdrew the US from the nuclear agreement reached under his predecessor Barack Obama, calling it the “worst deal ever”, and vowing to press Tehran into negotiating a new deal through a “maximum pressure” campaign that included tough economic sanctions and military provocations.