April 8, 2015

IT'S NOT A NUKE DEAL, IT'S A TRADE DEAL:

C.I.A. Director Says Iran's Economic Peril Helped Drive Nuclear Deal (DAVID E. SANGER, APRIL 8, 2015, NY Times)

The director of the Central Intelligence Agency has provided the first public glimpse of American intelligence assessments about why Iran's leadership agreed to the tentative nuclear accord last week, saying that Iran's president persuaded its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, that their country's economy was "destined to go down" unless he reached an understanding with the West.

The director, John O. Brennan, speaking Tuesday night at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, also dismissed as "wholly disingenuous" the claim of Israel's prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, that the framework accord reached last Thursday in Lausanne, Switzerland, would provide Iran with a "pathway to a bomb." [...]

Mr. Brennan suggested that the key to the deal was the election of President Hassan Rouhani, who had hardly been the supreme leader's first choice. It took more than two years, he suggested, for the new president, a former nuclear negotiator himself, to convince the far more isolated Ayatollah Khamenei that "six years of sanctions had really hit," and that the economic future imperiled the regime. [...]

"I think over time Rouhani was able to explain to Khamenei just how challenging the economic environment was in Iran right now, and it was destined to go down," he said. "The only way they were going to address" the problem was to get sanctions lifted.

Posted by at April 8, 2015 10:43 AM
  

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