Whatever you think of the framework to prevent Iran’s nuclear arms ambitions, it could be worse. Anyway you look at it, western nations have three possible options: 1 – Negotiate the best deal possible with Iran. 2 – Continue to allow Iran to develop its nuclear capabilities despite our sanctions. 3 – Declare war.
There are no others.
That said, let’s look at the options individually. A new war in the Middle East would result in a complete and utter disaster. It would not only spread the conflict between the Sunnis and Shiites. It would make the US the enemy of both for the foreseeable future. International terrorism would expand. And the cost to the US in blood and treasure would dwarf that of the Iraq and Afghan wars combined.
If we abandon the framework and impose new, stricter sanctions on Iran, it is a virtual certainty that Iran will have nuclear weapons within a few years and the sanctions will have hardened Iran’s attitudes against the West. The result will be a nuclear-armed nation that is stridently anti-American.
By contrast, the negotiated framework allows international inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities and, at worst, will delay the creation of a nuclear bomb for at least ten years. In the meantime, the easing of sanctions will likely soften anti-American sentiment by the Iranian populace – many of whom want closer relations with the US. Moreover, we’ll have opened dialogue with the Iranian government and people showing that we can work in cooperation despite our differences.
Given the possible options, the US and Iran have only one real choice: Give peace a chance. Don’t let the same war-mongering politicians who led us into Iraq on false pretenses convince you otherwise.