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WSJ Editorial: Trump’s Iran Policy Can Succeed

So everyone, from Democrats, to journalists, to all of Europe, is pissing in their pants because Iran is threatening to increase its production of uranium in response to President Trump’s sanctions and supposed belligerance.

The United States has to make a decision about whether it can live with a brutal, terrorism-sponsoring Iranian theocracy with nuclear weapons. Barack Obama decided that this would be someone else’s problem, crafting a deal that would allow the Iranians to develop nuclear weapons a decade or so from now. Trump and his advisors have decided to take responsibility for solving the problem, and of course are getting lots of grief for it.

A new op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal by Reuel Marc Gerecht and Ray Takeyh counsels patience with Trump’s policy and not to overreact to Iranian actions meant to scare everyone. Trump’s policy is not designed to start a war — though that could happen, there are always risks — but to force Iran back to the negotiating table for a deal that will actually prevent them from have nukes. Or, potentially to cause the collapse of the Iranian regime, though I wouldn’t count on it.

The risk of war should not outweigh the certainty under the Obama deal that Iran will develop nuclear weapons, which would not only pose an existential threat to the United States but would prompt a nuclear arms race in the Middle East.

From the WSJ piece:

Despite the criticisms from Democrats and Europeans, Mr. Trump’s Iran policy has had considerable success. He abrogated a deficient agreement that was smoothing Iran’s path to a nuclear weapon. He restored sanctions, which many Iran-deal partisans insisted couldn’t be done effectively. The economic pain Tehran feels today is as great as when the Europeans implemented their oil embargo in 2012. Iran’s oil exports have contracted rapidly, denying the regime billions of dollars in hard currency. The key challenge for the Trump administration now is to sustain its strategy as the Iranians start dangling the possibility of a diplomatic opening. 

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s most important contribution has been to dispense with the once-popular notion that the nuclear issue can be separated from the clerical regime’s regional ambitions. His May 2018 “12 points” speech sensibly posited that the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism shouldn’t possess a nuclear arsenal. The administration has developed a containment strategy that is unconventional and restrained—Iran’s expeditionary forces and allied militias in the northern Middle East haven’t been targeted—but still punishing. As long as Mr. Trump is willing to respond to a direct challenge, conventional or nuclear, and Tehran is convinced of the president’s mettle, time is on Washington’s side. 

America’s Iran problem will remain until the theocracy cracks. Given the regime’s inability to escape the contradictions of its own making, that day is drawing closer. The U.S. needs stamina—and a clear understanding of how the enemy sees itself.

7 Responses to WSJ Editorial: Trump’s Iran Policy Can Succeed

  1. Why don’t countries understand that Iran is very dangerous. Iran has said many times they will wipe Israel off the face of the map.

    I am glad Trump has told Europe they can either deal with the USA or Iran but not both. The UK is with us.

  2. Yikes!
    Big Scary Iran…yawn…like we don’t have Ohio Class Boomers in the Arabian Sea, with 24 on board nukes poised at every city and nuclear processing site in the country.

    What’s that’s Iran?…. Oh, you’re still working on making a single nuke?

    Cool.

    Let us know how that works out for ya’.

    • …I pray there is a special place in Hell for him and all who supported his arrogant, anti-American, racist regime. :-(

      • Can’t figure out why all those white liberals voted for him. He hates white people. I guess it was typical limousine liberal guilt.