Iran’s Upper Hand

Rachel Ehrenfeld & Ken Jensen

The United States participation in the Kazakhstan negotiations with Iran, as part of the P5+1 (five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council: China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and Germany) creates the impression that the Obama administration is determined to end the U.S. role as the super power it once was.

Nothing seems to deter the administration’s determination to negotiate with the Ayatollahs. Not the IAEA report that Tehran has already begun to install advanced centrifuges at its nuclear plant at Natanz to increase the pace of uranium enrichment, or Iran’s “skyjacking” of American drones, cyber attacks on American financial institutions, or support of the Assad regime, Hezbollah and other jihadist groups.

Such aggressions have been met with half-hearted sanctions and empty warnings. Most recently, “The installation of new advanced centrifuges would be a further escalation, and a continuing violation of Iran’s obligations under the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and IAEA board resolutions.” Ever hopeful, the State Department insisted that Iran will have “the opportunity to allay the international community’s concerns during talks in Kazakhstan next week.”
Clearly, Iran’s blatant rejection of Joe Biden’s recent offer to engage in bi-lateral talks has done little to reduce the State Department’s enthusiasm. “We have said from the beginning of this [negotiations with Iran] in 2009 that we would be open, if the Iranians wanted to, in the context of being together for the P-5 plus one, to meet bilaterally with the Iranian side.”

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