Looking ahead, it is the responsibility of Democrats to finish what Obama has started. In order to do so, they must recognize that reverting to a militaristic mindset and abandoning diplomacy threatens both the JCPOA and potential solutions to each of the additional aforementioned policy challenges.
If the White House won't challenge Iran, Congress should do what it can to uphold America's commitments. Sanctions need to continue to target the regime's support for terrorism, ballistic-missile development, aid to Bashar al-Assad's regime in Syria and designated Shiite militias in Iraq, and human-rights abuses.
When Iran and the six major global powers reached an agreement last summer to put an end to the controversy surrounding Tehran's nuclear program by announcing the conclusion of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, Iranians flocked to the streets en masse, rejoicing at what they believed would be the emergence of a new horizon in their lives.