President Barack Obama tried peaceful negotiations and assistance, but neglected the plight of the Iranian citizens, as it resulted in hard times for the Iranian people. The regime received an influx of money, while many of the measures included in the nuclear agreement, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), were not carried out to the full extent. An end to the Obama tenure will be considered a severe blow to Iran.
Tehran was able to take full advantage of Washington’s strategic mistakes over the past 16 years, and the entire region is now in chaos: Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Lebanon. U.S. policy on Iran during the Bush and Obama administrations worsened the situation for the Iranian people.
After Obama’s election, the 2009 uprising in Iran followed the reelection of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Had Obama supported the uprising, positioned the US against Ahmadinejad, or even questioned the election’s credibility, his words would have great effect spirit on the popular movement.
Will Trump keep all his election campaign pledges? Maybe, but from Tehran’s point of view, this new administration will be completely different from a Hillary Clinton White House. Trump has taken very firm positions against Iran, including his threat to rip apart the nuclear deal. He represents a major contrast to the US policy under Obama.
Iran needs the JCPOA to remain intact, as seen in the recent lobbying campaign, and while Trump may not eliminate it, he is not committed to any pledges.
Any breech of the JCPOA may cause major changes for Iran regarding the nuclear deal, transforming the pact into an unwanted ordeal.
Moreover, the appointees of Trump’s probable administration lineup have already spoken out against Iran, including former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani, former House speaker Newt Gingrich and Ambassador John Bolton. Many candidates for Trump’s cabinet oppose the Iran nuclear deal and/or have supported the main Iranian opposition MEK in its call for regime change in Iran.
Iran’s lobbies on both sides of the Atlantic have launched a smear campaign against these figures, and yet they have maintained their positions.