Art of the deal?
So, Mr. Trump has unilaterally pulled the United States out of the “nuclear deal” finalized in 2015 in conjunction with several other nations and Iran which, despite his administration’s persistent disinformation about it (as well as his own clear lack of understanding of it), has successfully stopped Iran’s program to develop nuclear weapons in its tracks, precisely as it was intended to do, and would continue to do so for many years to come. For the actual facts regarding this deal and the quite strict and thorough verification procedures entailed (officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA), simply research it for yourself online.
The impact of this decision, however, is frightening.
First, when it comes to negotiating and honoring future deals, the credibility of the United States is now severely damaged, as it has become painfully evident to all that our word is no longer our bond, and any deals made can be trashed on the whim of our President at any time. No doubt Kim Jong-un, the brutal dictator who rules North Korea, will be keeping this in mind as the upcoming meeting with Mr. Trump regarding their nuclear weapons program approaches.
Second, in doing so, Mr. Trump has alienated some of our closest and most important allies, and served to further isolate us and diminish our leadership role in the world.
Third, Iran (who reportedly has been holding up their end of this deal) is now free to also pull out in response to our having done so, and to resume its nuclear weapons program at any time. And, if they choose to do this, one can safely anticipate that those “hawks” now in power (surely led by John Bolton, our new National Security Advisor, who has long advocated initiating a pre-emptive war with Iran to stop them from acquiring such nuclear capabilities) will start beating those drums of war once more.
Weren’t we just down this path not that long ago? How many times must we make the same mistakes, risking innumerable lives and unfathomable suffering, before learning the lessons history offers us? Didn’t Mr. Trump promise to keep us out of wars like this? Is this just another example of his apparent obsession with un-doing everything achieved by his predecessor, regardless of consequences, for his own ego-driven reasons? Is the world in any way safer now that we have broken our word and pulled out of this deal?
One defining characteristic of a wise leader is the ability and willingness to thoroughly study all of the complex and intertwined issues involved in the weighty decisions facing them, to consider all possible consequences and carefully weigh all of the pros and cons entailed, and to look beyond one’s own personal agendas in order to see the bigger picture and thus be best able to serve the greater good before acting. Based on this ominously consequential decision, it appears that Mr.Trump sorely lacks this quality and has thus brought our nation and the world one big step closer to yet another war.
Certainly the “cloud” of ongoing questions concerning possible Russian collusion, the obvious and continuing obstruction of justice efforts by Mr. Trump and his allies, and the extraordinary level of rampant corruption swirling around this administration (which has expanded “the swamp” to unprecedented depths) raise many other dark and serious concerns about the Trump administration. But this particular decision raises the stakes to yet another level – one which brings with it incredibly serious risks not only to our own national security, but to that of the world as a whole.
One can only hope that such fears concerning this administration’s handling of this frighteningly precarious and potentially explosive situation prove to be wrong. Time will certainly tell.
Dale E. Buonocore,