By Poorang Novak
Last year, U.S. President Donald Trump pulled out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). He explained that the nuclear deal does nothing to curb the nuclear threat – it simply just delays it. The U.S. president also explained that there are a whole series of issues that the nuclear does not address, including Iran’s spread of terror and chaos across the region, its support of terrorist proxy groups and militias, its involvement in regional conflicts and the mistreatment of its own people.
However, despite no longer being part of the deal, the United States continues to monitor Iran’s compliance and it is keeping a close eye on Iran’s activities in general. The same issues still exist and the United States will not ignore the problems just because it is no longer a signatory of the JCPOA.
Iran is being put under a “maximum pressure” campaign by the United States and is steadily taking actions to curb Iran’s belligerence.
Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton said earlier this week that the Trump administration is going to continue applying pressure, only stopping when its behaviour becomes acceptable. He said: “We will continue to increase the pressure on the Iranian regime until it abandons its nuclear weapons programme and ends its violent activities across the Middle East, including conducting and supporting terrorism around the world.”
It was confirmed by the United Nation’s nuclear watchdog that the Iranian regime has surpassed the enriched uranium limits that it is bound to according to the nuclear agreement. Iran threatened to do so, and it followed through despite please from a number of countries including the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Japan.
Iranian officials maintain that the country’s nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only, but it is very clear that Iran is looking for leverage so that it can push the Europeans into coming up with a way around the sanctions.
One way in which the United States can really hit the regime hard is via the people of Iran. The people are calling out for regime change and they are going to be the biggest force behind its collapse. Military conflict can be avoided and the most peaceful option will be the way in which the whole region can put the current turmoil in the past.
The regime presents a major security threat to the Middle East and much further beyond. It has been involved in terrorist plots on European soil and it has intelligence agents the whole way across the continent spying on members of the opposition.
But some of the regime’s most serious and brutal crimes have taken place at home. The regime has killed more than one hundred thousand members of the opposition and it continues to suppress dissidents.
The international community, especially those countries that have values based on freedom, equality, democracy and human rights, need to speak out in support of the people of Iran who have been ignored for so long.