Trump’s New Strategy on Iran Embraces “Israel-First”, “Saudi-Second” and “America-Last” Perspective

by Philip Giraldi, Aletho News

President Donald Trump’s move to decertify the Iranian nuclear Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), entered into a little over two years ago, was applauded by Israel, Saudi Arabia and a couple of Persian Gulf States, but by no one else. Quite the contrary, as the European and Asian co-signatories on the agreement, having failed to dissuade Trump, have clearly indicated that they will continue to abide by it. Also, the decision to kick the can down the road by giving Congress 60 days to increase pressure on Tehran in an attempt to include other issues beyond nuclear development like its ballistic missile program and labeling the country’s Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist group are likely to create confusion as Washington is unable to communicate directly with Iran. That uncertainty could possibly lead to a fraught-with-danger Iranian decision to withdraw completely from the agreement.

The Trump speech could reasonably be described as embracing an “Israel-First” and “Saudi-Second” perspective that might plausibly suggest that it was actually drafted by their respective foreign ministries. Contrary to Trump’s campaign pledges, it might also be characterized as an “America-Last” speech, since it actually encourages nuclear proliferation while rendering it even more difficult for anyone to respect the agreements entered into by the United States government.

Fred Kaplan sums up the speech’s fundamental dishonesty with considerable clarity by observing that   “It flagrantly misrepresents what the deal was meant to do, the extent of Iran’s compliance, and the need for corrective measures. If he gets his way, he will blow up one of the most striking diplomatic triumphs of recent years, aggravate tensions in the Middle East, make it even harder to settle the North Korean crisis peacefully, and make it all but impossible for allies and adversaries to trust anything the United States says for as long as Trump is in office.”

Former senior CIA analyst Paul Pillar has also dissected the untruths and false analogies that made up the bulk of the Trump speech. In short, Pillar argues that the president is using faulty analysis to end a program that is working and that employs unprecedented intrusive inspections to guarantee that Iran can make no progress towards having a nuclear weapon for at least eight more years and quite likely for even longer. Against that, Iran could well end its cooperation and, out of fear of U.S. attack, might well turn towards possession of a nuclear arsenal to guarantee its own survival. Pillar calls ending JCPOA now because Iran just might develop a weapon after it expires in 2025 as “committing suicide because of fear of death.”

In a second highly partisan international action last week, the United States led a march out the door of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization due to its alleged “bias against Israel.” UNESCO had enraged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by declaring that the Old City of Hebron and the associated Cave of the Patriarchs on the West Bank is an endangered Palestinian world cultural heritage site. A few hundred Israeli settlers live in Hebron, guarded by the Israeli Army, amidst 200,000 Palestinians who, according to The Guardian, “have long lived under harsh restrictions in the city, which is one of the starkest symbols of the Israeli occupation.” The U.S. is also threatening to pull out of the U.N.’s Human Rights Council “to protect Israel,”…

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Trump refuses to certify Iran nuclear deal despite EU criticism