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Ryan Costello
Ryan Costello joined the National Iranian American Council in April 2013 as a Policy Fellow. In this role, Ryan monitors legislation, conducts research and writing, and helps to coordinate advocacy efforts.

Ryan previously served as a Program Associate at the Connect U.S. Fund, where he focused on nuclear non-proliferation policy. In that role, he coordinated the Fissile Materials Working Group, a coalition of 70 domestic and international organizations dedicated to preventing nuclear terrorism. He has published in American Foreign Policy Interests, Hurriyet Daily News, The Courier, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and INENS Insights. Prior to the Connect U.S. Fund, he served as an intern at the Fund for Peace where he focused on nuclear security. While there, he published a report entitled “Threat Convergence in Pakistan: Countering Terrorist Aspirations and Improving Nuclear Security.”

Ryan graduated from American University’s School of International Service in May 2011 with a Master of Arts in U.S. Foreign Policy, where he also concentrated in International Peace and Conflict Resolution. In 2008, Ryan graduated from Ursinus College where he majored in history and international relations, finishing with honors in international relations for his thesis on U.S.-Iran policy from the Cold War through the George W. Bush administration.

Entries by Ryan Costello

How Clinton Can Woo Back Iranian Americans

(0) Comments | Posted May 2, 2016 | 2:46 PM

Let the wooing begin. After her latest primary win, Secretary Hillary Clinton has shifted her focus to the general election. And with that comes the task of uniting the party and wooing the Bernie Sanders supporters to her side. It won't be easy - her pro-interventionist track record or Goldman...

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Can the Iran Accord Survive New Challenges?

(28) Comments | Posted December 31, 2015 | 12:44 PM

While Iran has swiftly moved to comply with the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the multilateral nuclear accord struck in July, hardliners in both Iran and the U.S. have already succeeded in provoking actions that threaten to poison the atmosphere for the deal's implementation.

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Much More Is Needed From Iran Hawks to Oppose a Nuclear Deal

(1) Comments | Posted May 19, 2015 | 2:09 PM

Senate hawks like Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) do not like diplomacy with Iran. Graham has repeatedly threatened war with Iran, whereas Kirk prefers to starve the Iranian people. Yet, given that most Americans do not want another military adventure in the...

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Stakes Are High for Iran Nuclear Negotiations

(1) Comments | Posted March 30, 2015 | 7:02 PM

This week, the U.S. has a chance to lead an international coalition into an agreement that would guard against any attempt by Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon. However, the decades since the Iranian Revolution in 1979 are littered with missed opportunities to resolve differences between the U.S. and Iran,...

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Congress Lays Tripwires for Iran Nuclear Accord

(8) Comments | Posted March 20, 2015 | 12:37 PM

As negotiators work to clear the final hurdles for a framework nuclear deal with Iran, Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker (R-Tennessee) and Ranking Member Robert Menendez (D-New Jersey) have decided to delay a markup of a bill that would lay tripwires that threaten any final deal. Diplomacy has been...

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Netanyahu's Dangerous Iran Push

(141) Comments | Posted February 20, 2015 | 3:49 PM

With the U.S. and Iran continuing to narrow gaps toward a nuclear deal that would prevent a disastrous war, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is gearing up to play spoiler. As part of his campaign, Netanyahu has ignored all protocol in order to attack the negotiations before a...

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If It's True on Cuba, It's True on Iran

(53) Comments | Posted December 17, 2014 | 3:28 PM

America's Cuba policy has long been an open joke in international circles. Seldom has a country pursued such a futile policy for so long while clearly recognizing its senselessness. It's probably the foremost example of how American domestic politics can take its foreign policy hostage, leaving everyone a loser.

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Can Obama and the Republican Congress Seal an Iran Nuclear Deal?

(0) Comments | Posted November 5, 2014 | 1:37 PM

With the Republicans gaining control of both houses of the U.S. Congress, polarization and partisan gridlock are likely to continue to grip Washington. The grim political outlook has already cast a shadow over nuclear negotiations with Iran, where a diplomatic breakthrough remains within reach as the parties near a November...

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Senate Bill Would Cut Off Iran Nuclear Inspections

(1) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 3:46 PM

For congressional hawks claiming to take a tough line against Iran's nuclear program, cutting off funding for enhanced International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspections over that program seems like an odd approach. Yet a new bill introduced by the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee would threaten to...

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If Iran Negotiations Need to Continue, Let Them

(1) Comments | Posted July 18, 2014 | 2:11 PM

Regardless of whether or not negotiators conclude a final Iran nuclear deal by Sunday, the United States and Iran have made steady progress toward resolving a crisis that is decades in the making. It appears that the key hurdle to a diplomatic breakthrough is a surmountable one: defining the size...

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Iran Nuclear Gridlock Is Political, Not Technical

(4) Comments | Posted June 20, 2014 | 10:20 PM

The Iran nuclear talks present a rare opportunity for a major American diplomatic victory. If negotiators from the P5+1 and Iran bridge the remaining political gaps, they will resolve a major national security threat -- a potential Iranian nuclear weapon -- without a shot being fired.


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Why Is Bank of America Closing Iranian Students' Accounts?

(13) Comments | Posted May 15, 2014 | 10:50 AM

Students across the world grow up dreaming of the opportunity to study at the best universities the United States has to offer, either to bring their skills back to their home country or to start a new life in the land of opportunity. Many go to great lengths to achieve...

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Obama Warns Congress Off Iran Sanctions

(0) Comments | Posted January 29, 2014 | 7:22 AM

In last night's State of the Union address, the president had the opportunity to address the group of lawmakers that could very well determine whether his legacy includes a deal that resolves the nuclear crisis with Iran or whether the U.S. continues on a path toward an unnecessary and costly...

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The Other Bully From New Jersey

(4) Comments | Posted January 10, 2014 | 10:50 AM

Gov. Chris Christie isn't the only New Jersey politician stirring up controversy these days. The senior senator from New Jersey, Robert Menendez, has partnered with Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) to push an Iran sanctions bill over the strong objections of the White House, our nation's diplomats, many of his own...

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Rep. Sherman Favors More Civilian Airline Crashes in Iran

(355) Comments | Posted November 27, 2013 | 4:15 PM

The nuclear deal that was struck between Iran, the United States and other world powers last week has elicited a lot of reactions in the policymaking world. Many have been strongly positive. Others have been downright crazy. And then, in the case of Rep. Brad Sherman...

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Adelson and FDD Want to Nuke Iran, Diplomacy

(263) Comments | Posted October 24, 2013 | 7:28 PM

Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire best-known in political circles for losing a great deal of money trying to unseat President Obama in the 2012 election, is also a major donor to organizations that are pushing for new sanctions and war with Iran. Just yesterday, Adelson made some shocking comments...

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A Historic Week for Iran Diplomacy

(0) Comments | Posted October 1, 2013 | 12:06 PM

Last week's historic events surrounding the United Nations General Assembly could foreshadow a fundamental shift in U.S.-Iran relations away from mutual antagonism toward peaceful coexistence. With promising speeches at the UN, a direct bilateral meeting between Secretary of State John Kerry and Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, and a...

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Rouhani's Electoral Honeymoon Won't Last Long

(47) Comments | Posted September 24, 2013 | 10:13 AM

This week's events at and surrounding the UN General Assembly will help determine whether the U.S. and Iran can resolve their differences, or if hardliners on either side will once again succeed in sabotaging reconciliation.

Iran's new President, Hassan Rouhani, has arrived in New York seven weeks into his...

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In Syria, Costs of Escalation Remain High

(14) Comments | Posted August 27, 2013 | 11:13 AM

This column was written in my personal capacity and does not necessarily reflect the views of the National Iranian American Council.

It appears highly likely that Bashar al-Assad's regime used chemical weapons against the Syrian people. The president is now considering a range of possible retaliatory steps. The...

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Meet the 20 Lawmakers Who Stood Up to the War Lobby

(15) Comments | Posted August 1, 2013 | 8:43 PM

Yesterday, House leadership ignored the warning of a growing group of experts, former officials, and even their own colleagues by pushing through an Iran sanctions bill (H.R.850) that, if passed by the Senate, risks sabotaging diplomatic talks that offer the best chance to prevent a nuclear-armed...

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