Global Tracker

Trump Withdraws U.S. From Iran Nuclear Deal

President Donald Trump, at a press conference on May 8, 2018, withdrew the United States from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Tanner Kenney recaps the latest development and the uncertainty of what will follow.


At 2:21pm EST, President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, also known as the Iran Nuclear Deal, delivering on a promise he made throughout his campaign. There had been a great deal of speculation as to the President’s intentions prior to the decision, and now that it has been made, these questions turn to – what comes next for Iran, the U.K., France, China, Germany, and Russia as well as the United States? Speculation regarding the re-imposition of economic sanctions amongst the remaining members of the pact has varied greatly due to demographic changes similar to those in the United States.

Iran has indicated that it is willing to maintain its course and abide by the terms currently set by the deal even as the United States pulls out of the agreement. However, it is now certain that the nation will face additional sanctions targeted at the nation’s oil and gas industry agricultural and tourism sectors as Trump insists on utilizing every political weapon at his disposal, including one of his more frequently-used tactics, the omission of facts. In his address to the world, President Trump did not once address the fact that Iran has, for the most part, complied with all aspects of the JCPOA.

Additionally, Trump could not waste today’s opportunity in front of a bevy of cameras without touting his efforts to denuclearize North Korea by scheduling a groundbreaking meeting with its leader, Kim Jon Un. President Trump also felt it necessary to decry the actions of Iran’s leaders – political and cultural, alike – whilst lamenting what he sees as a “long suffering” citizenry. This is simply not the case, on-the-ground, as Iranians are, for the most part, privy to a relatively equal and modern life with a stable government providing essential services.

Furthermore, the Trump Administration has, itself, ambitiously and intentionally confused observers and reporters by obfuscating facts and “leaking” misleading plans, amongst other tactics in order to achieve its political goals – a backbone of the argument against the Iranian government and in support of today’s withdrawal. This type of fly-by-night diplomacy is untenable, at best, and could lead to the complete deterioration of the relationship between the two nations, at worst leading to a military conflict spurned-on by the Syrian Civil War.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, as President Trump left today’s news conference, a reporter could be heard asking him several times, “How does this make us safer?” As of this writing, it appears as though the decision to withdraw the U.S. from the pact makes the world a less safe environment. Without actively monitoring Iran’s nuclear capabilities with both private and public inspections, including highly regarded international agencies, there is no telling what could come of Trump’s decision, including a further devolution of political alliances throughout the world.

Tanner Kenney is an energy and media professional with a background in journalism and received his M.S. in Global Affairs, Environment & Energy Policy from NYU’s Center for Global Affairs. Recently, Tanner has focused on the advocacy of sustainable development through renewable energy technologies, transportation efficiency, and inclusive public policy.

Photo Credit: AP Via Time

Please note that opinions expressed in this article are solely those of our contributors, not of Political Insights, which takes no institutional positions.

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