The U.S. State Department said on Wednesday that the Biden administration is prepared to lift sanctions on Iran that are “inconsistent” with the 2015 nuclear agreement. The move is being made after a weekend meeting in Vienna with the major powers and Iran, where “constructive progress” was made toward the United States rejoining the nuclear agreement.
“We are prepared to take the steps necessary to return to compliance with the JCPOA, including by lifting sanctions that are inconsistent with the JCPOA. I am not in a position here to give you chapter and verse on what those might be,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters.
Apparently, Iran, which is wildly out of compliance with the accord, won’t have to do a thing.
The U.S. announced the unilateral easing of sanctions at virtually the same time that Iran sent its regrets to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that they would be unable to meet to discuss “undeclared nuclear material” that was found at three different sites in the past year.
The IAEA has said it is “deeply concerned” at the prospect of undeclared nuclear material in Iran. It says Iran has not credibly explained the first particles it found, at a site in Tehran that Iran said was a carpet-cleaning facility, and is seeking answers on those found last year at two other sites.
The United States and its allies have been pressuring Iran to come clean, and the issue could complicate efforts by Washington and Tehran to revive the nuclear deal.
Iran has bristled at “attempts to open an endless process of verifying and cleaning-up of ever-continuing fabricated allegations”. It also denied the IAEA access to the two sites for seven months last year. It denies ever pursuing nuclear weapons and says its nuclear aims are entirely peaceful.
Meanwhile, Iranian nuclear authorities proudly shared the news that they have created about 120 pounds of highly enriched uranium — a feat made possible after the Iranian parliament passed a law that made the 2015 nuclear deal a dead issue.
“In less than four months we have produced 55 kg of 20% enriched uranium … in around eight months we can reach 120 kg,” Kamalvandi told state TV.
Uranium is considered highly enriched as of 20%. Enriching to 20% is a big step towards enriching to weapons-grade.
Biden’s abject surrender to Iran isn’t a surprise. It’s perfectly in keeping with the progressive playbook on negotiations in that the first step is to admit the United States was morally wrong and to seek forgiveness. Eventually, the sanctions will be lifted and Iran will be free to go about the task of dominating the region and confronting Israel.
Indeed, there is a school of thought on the left that actually believes it would be for the best if Iran were able to dominate the region. The fate of Israel would be of little consequence, but allowing Iran to create a theocratic empire would bring stability to a highly unstable region.
The Biden administration is operating under the delusion that Iran actually wants to cooperate with the West on taming its nuclear program and become a normal, grown-up country that would play by international rules and norms. This won’t happen. Iran is infused with religious fanaticism — something liberals in the West have never understood. They will act as Allah tells them, not according to any rules set up by infidel Westerners.