The Iran Nuclear Deal
Debate Rounds (4)
first round will be for confirmation, I'll be debating on why the Iran Nuclear deal being passed is bad
I will be making the case that Iran Nuclear Deal is beneficial.
NEXT: Under this deal, Iran will begin to receive over $150 billion in sanctions relief. Assumptions that this money will go to support domestic programs are naive. While struggling under stiff international sanctions, Iran still diverted over $32 billion per year to support the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps and its terrorist proxies. One of these terrorist proxies are Hezbollah, who is a large threat towards the US.
NEXT: The deal removes the arms embargo on conventional weapons within five years, and annuls the embargo on ballistic missiles within eight. This move challenges what the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, said just days before the deal was finalized: "under no circumstances should we relieve pressure on Iran relative to ballistic missile capabilities." With these arms embargoes lifted, Iran"s conventional military will strengthen, making any future military action higher risk for U.S. and allied forces. We can be sure that the Revolutionary Guard will exploit sanctions relief to fund a new generation of terrorism through its proxies, including Hamas and Hezbollah. This means that within a few years, Iran will have access to very powerful weapons, which will increase tensions in the Middle East.
LASTLY: The president"s promise that sanctions will "snap back into place" if there is a violation is patently false. Reinstating international sanctions would require a coordinated effort from multiple nations, including China and Russia, an unlikely scenario. This is a disastrous foreign policy mistake. If ratified, U.S. security will be jeopardized, Israeli existence will be seriously threatened and the already volatile Middle East will devolve into an arms race.
These are all the reasons why the Iran Nuclear Deal is a terrible idea.
I'll try to address this point-by-point.
1. Yes, Iran does have the ability to possibly delay an inspection of undeclared sites. However, a key part of the deal with Iran is a set of rather robust inspections of its known facilities. With this deal in place, there is now some idea of the consequences of cheating on these inspections. An article I read the other day (I can't seem to find it now) made a rather good point that should Iran start constructing a nuclear weapon now, it's highly unlikely that they'd use the material that we know they have (the same material we will be very actively monitoring). The terms of the deal would require Iran to try and siphon resources away from the facilities outlined in the deal (resources that have already been scaled back in terms of potency), which if the inspections are performed correctly should be quite noticeable. Iran only has a few sources for the major resources (centrifuges, uranium), all of which will be under heavy inspection per the requirements of the deal.
2. Yes, Iran will receive sizable sanctions relief payments. Yes, I also agree it is naive to believe that the vast majority of this will go to domestic programs. However, while Tehran continues funding Hezbollah and while America remains their "Great Satan," you might also recognize a threat within the region that does not show any signs of going away soon. I personally find it hard to imagine that Iran and Hezbollah would prioritize a fight against the US. The predominantly Shiite state and its favorite terrorist organization are likely placing greater focus on the (Sunni) Islamic State forces working their way through that part of the world. In fact, earlier today the Independent (UK) released a piece entitled "Iran offered Iraq an 'open cheque' to help them battle Isis, says ambassador." Besides, as you said, Iran funnels money to these organizations regardless of sanctions, so we may as well offer them sanctions relief as a concession in this deal which otherwise heavily favors the US.
3. While the restrictions placed on Iran will expire or be removed in the coming years (and the deal itself expires 10-15 years from now), in the long term this move is beneficial. With this deal, we lengthen the "breakout time" -- the time needed for Iran to produce a nuclear weapon if they started today, dedicating all possible resources to that program. Currently, the estimated breakout time is two to three months. Once the terms of the deal are in full effect, this time is estimated to be one year -- at the very minimum. Not only does this arrangement "buy time" should Iran decide to pursue nuclear weaponry, but when the deal expires we will have a far more accurate estimate of what Iran is capable of. Iran may seem like a relatively crazy foreign state: however, they are not suicidal. Iran's population of 80-odd million people is lower than the US's estimated 140 million people who are supposedly fit for service. A war between conventional militaries is still an ugly possibility, however I think myself and many politicians would agree that it's better than the smallest of nuclear exchanges. On top of this, I don't think it's quite fair to claim that increased difficulty in taking military action for the US would be a particularly bad thing. With the deal we have been given here and the current military balance of power, we have very little to worry about even if Iran decided to take full advantage of lifted arms embargoes.
4. This last point you have is particularly shaky, although it seems it's based on an incorrect assumption about the nature of the sanctions on Iran. An article on Vox about the matter I thought did a good job explaining how the "snapback" (the actual word used) will work, so I'll just paste a small portion from that:
'The snapback thing is really clever, I had to read it a couple of times to make sure it said what I think it said,' Jeffrey Lewis, the Middlebury nuclear expert, told me.
If the US thinks Iran is cheating, the first step is taking it to a special commission of the seven countries that signed the deal plus the European Union. 'But wait,' you're saying, 'can't Russia or China just use this process to stall or outright block the US?' Nope, they can't, because if the US is still unhappy, after a few weeks it can kick the issue up to the UN Security Council.
'But wait,' you say again, 'won't Russia and China just veto anything the US brings up there?' Nope, they can't meddle there either. If the US complains to the Security Council, and after 30 days the Security Council does nothing " and the US can ensure it does nothing by vetoing any resolutions " then under the deal the sanctions will automatically come back into force.
'It sounds like the US can blow up the deal any time it wants and revert to sanctions,' Lewis said. And there's a good reason for that: 'That's just how things are anyway.'
In summary, the way the sanctions are arranged is done so that the US can nuke (excuse the pun) the deal at any time they like, regardless of what China and Russia (the two UNSC members most likely to veto) think about the matter. If the US doesn't like the way it's going (because of cheating or because "I just wanted to change my mind"), they can throw out the deal and revert things to their previous state.
In closing, the Iran Nuclear Deal is a complex deal in which the US has a significant advantage. Any concessions made to Iran may seem frightening but are ultimately either insignificant or cancelled out by a long-term benefit to the US.
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