US President Donald Trump has announced the US will pull out of the landmark nuclear accord with Iran, dealing a profound blow to US allies and potentially deepening the president’s isolation on the world stage.
“The United States does not make empty threats,” he said in a televised address.
Trump’s decision means Iran’s government must now decide whether to follow the US and withdraw or try to salvage what’s left of the deal. Iran has offered conflicting statements about what it may do – and the answer may depend on exactly how Trump exits the agreement.
This is bad for the US and bad for security.
If the US pulls out of agreements with other countries on a whim, then no one will trust the US or see merit in a deal with them.
Trump said he would move to re-impose all sanctions on Iran that had been lifted under the 2015 deal, not just the ones facing an immediate deadline. This had become known informally as the “nuclear option” because of the near-certainty that such a move would scuttle the deal.
So Iran will probably now resume its nuclear program unfettered.