These ambassadors join the overwhelming majority of former diplomats and national security officials who have come out in favor of the deal to block all of Iran's pathways to a bomb. There is fierce opposition to the agreement, but most is from political figures and neoconservative groups, with few former senior officials backing them.
JERUSALEM -- Even at this early stage, it is apparent that the agreement has empowered Iran regionally. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's minority Alawite regime lavished praise on the agreement, rightly recognizing that enhanced international legitimacy and financial resources will enable Shia Iran to provide greater backing. Assad's other major regional ally, Lebanon's Hezbollah (which the U.S. classifies as a terrorist organization), also supports the deal. Vladimir Putin's Russia is also happy to have received U.S. assistance, however indirectly, in strengthening Assad's hold on power.
Many commentators greeted the agreement with deep skepticism. They dismissed the two years of negotiations with a single assertion: the deal should be rejected because the other side cannot be trusted. Some of these naysayers are right. There is reason to doubt whether the United States can be trusted.
The Iran deal has become legally enshrined -- but that does not guarantee that Iran will fully abide by its provisions, let alone cease its subversive activity. To that end, to enforce the deal, the U.S. must focus not only on preventing Iran from getting nuclear weapons, but how to force it to change its behavior.
Even before the negotiations started, President Obama's detractors were saying that his efforts to negotiate with Iran over its nuclear program would fail. Now that we have an actual plan to review, we can weigh the merits of that plan. I have read the plan and it is my opinion that the plan is a good plan that will work.
Considering that the agreement is practically a done deal, how should Israel act to assure that it's security interests do not suffer? While Prime Minister Netanyahu continues to attack the agreement, I and many in Israel believe that it's time to deal with this worrying and uncertain situation in a sensible manner.
Just three weeks before the historic agreement between Iran and the group of six world powers, Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, issued comprehensive red lines for a possible nuclear deal. The nuclear deal reached on July 14 in Vienna clearly violates the lines almost in their entirety.
Most Americans struggle to recognize or understand their country's permanent security state, in which elected politicians seem to run the show, but the CIA and the Pentagon often take the lead -- a state that inherently gravitates toward military, rather than diplomatic, solutions to foreign-policy challenges. Viewed through the lens of history, the main job of U.S. presidents is to be mature and wise enough to stand up to the permanent war machine.
This week, the historic nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers was finalized. Provisions include reducing Iran's stockpile of uranium by 98 percent, IAEA inspections for 25 years, and a "snap-back" clause that would quickly reimpose sanctions if Iran breaks the deal. President Obama said it's "our best means of assuring that Iran does not get a nuclear weapon," and pointed out that critics haven't presented an alternative. But that didn't stop them from sounding off. Speaker Boehner called it "a bad deal" that "blows my mind." And Dick Cheney asked, "What the hell is the president thinking?" As the debate over the deal continues, it's worth noting that many of its most bellicose critics were among the biggest cheerleaders for the invasion of Iraq -- the worst foreign policy disaster in U.S. history. Their opposition might well be the ultimate sign the agreement is in America's best interest.
With the conclusion of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between the P5+1 and Iran, some are panicking in despair, while others have visions of a dramatically realigned Middle East. Both views are overreactions, since the deal itself is quite limited in scope, and the impact of 35 years of history and politics cannot easily be erased.