The European powers have consistently shared former President Barack Obama’s unfounded optimism when it comes to the flawed Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, signed by Iran, the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, and the EU in June 2015.
Obama himself, upon signing the agreement, announced with astounding confidence: “ We have stopped the spread of nuclear weapons in this region.” Frederica Mogherini, the EU’s foreign policy representative, echoed his statement, saying, “ We delivered on what the world was hoping for: a shared commitment to peace and to join hands in order to make our world safer.”
Despite all the talk of joining hands in pursuit of world peace, it has been over three years since the deal’s signing, and Iran’s expansionist aggression and sponsorship of terrorism across the Middle East has only been emboldened.
In Syria, Iranian militias have carried out some of the worst of President Bashar Assad’s murderous acts. In Lebanon, Iran continues to fund Hezbollah, a terrorist organization with a dangerous hold over the region, whose chief goal is the destruction of the state of Israel.
And in Iraq, following a long history of Iranian influence undermining post-war stability, this month, the U.S. faced mortars fired by Iranian proxies near its embassy in Baghdad. The continued rise in Iranian provocations proves that Obama’s attempts to pacify and appease the Islamic Republic have backfired.
The United States’ historic decision to pull out of the 1955 Treaty of Amity with Iran, which existed to affirm a supposed “friendship” between the two, sends an important message. Iran cannot continue to attack American interests and national sovereignty without repercussion. But the European powers are simply unwilling to reprimand Iran for its aggression.
A consistent feature of Trump’s Iran policy has been his opposition to the JCPOA. He was right to withdraw America from the deal earlier in the summer.
Yet the European powers continue to prop up the inherently flawed nuclear deal, as well as the erroneous notion that it will empower moderate sensibilities in the Iranian regime. In fact, their support for the JCPOA grants the worst of the hard-liners in Iran financial support.
After the deal was finalized in 2015, President Hassan Rouhani increased the budget of the belligerent Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps by 145 percent. With the European powers sustaining the deal and the break in sanctions, millions in unfrozen assets continue to flood into the hands of those who orchestrate the destabilization of the Middle East.
Despite strong evidence that Iran is violating the terms of the deal, the Islamic Republic continues to reap rewards from the EU In defiance of America’s withdrawal from the JCPOA, European powers have been especially keen to bolster it with excessive financial and diplomatic support. Mogherini led the announcement in August of a multimillion-dollar aid package to Iran, as a response to the U.S.’s reimposition of sanctions.
For European nations, it seems that economic interests may be a significant factor in their behavior. Since the nuclear deal, Iran has become an active trading partner for Germany and France. Just one example is the sale of 100 airplanes by the French company Airbus to IranAir, estimated at a total worth of $18 billion to 20 billion in commercial value.
Europe is weakening democratic principles by capitulating to Iran’s wishes. The unwavering commitment of European countries to the JCPOA means that they are forced to effectively turn a blind eye to the turmoil Iran has been sowing across the Middle East.
EU citizens are not exempt from existential threats from the Islamic Republic, either. Forty-year-old mother and dual British-Iranian national Nazanin Ratcliffe has been unlawfully imprisoned in Iran on spurious charges for more than two years. The British government has yet to secure her release, nor any guarantees for her safety. Ratcliffe’s torturous treatment in prison is a tragic reminder of the Iranian regime’s complete disregard for human rights.
John Bolton recently reminded the American public that Iran has “ been a threat throughout the entire Middle East.” The European powers would do well to take a page out of the administration’s book and open their eyes to Iran’s nefarious influence worldwide.
Source » washingtonexaminer