۳۰ آبان ۱۴۰۰ - ۱۵:۵۱
کد خبر: . ۱۱۸٬۶۵۴

TEHRAN(Bazaar) – William O. Beeman, Professor Emeritus of University of Minnesota, says Both the United States and Iran are playing for time. President Biden has suffered a dramatic drop in popularity in the United States.

Following is the text of the Bazaar interview with Professor William O. Beeman.

Bazaar: Axios has stated that the United States is seeking an interim agreement with Iran in order to gain the necessary time to negotiate a better agreement. What is your assessment of the solution?

Beeman: Both the United States and Iran are playing for time. President Biden has suffered a dramatic drop in popularity in the United States. With mid-term elections coming up next year, his administration is very cautious about negotiating an agreement with Iran that will be attacked by Republicans as showing "weakness" on the part of the United States. The first person to launch that attack will be former president Trump, who still has a large number of followers. On Iran's part, Iran is seeking to avoid a negative censure on the part of the IAEA, and so is playing for time until the next IAEA report.  Iranian leaders are feeling more confident about their bargaining position with increased diplomatic and trade ties with China and Russia. They are increasingly sending signals that they may not need the United States or Western economies to survive the current economic crisis in Iran.

 Bazaar: Three American and Israeli sources told Axios that US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, in a meeting with his Israeli counterpart, came up with the idea of reaching an interim agreement with Iran to allow time for nuclear talks. Why is this idea put forward by a European country currently being considered by the United States?

Beeman: It is a stalling tactic made to look like progress is being made.  The United States wants to continue to appear to be moving forward with these agreements while not making any concessions to Iran. The idea of an "interim agreement" will not be accepted by Iran unless there are significant reductions in sanctions.

Bazaar: According to US sources, such an idea means that in the face of a halt to 60 percent enrichment in Iran, the United States and its allies would release some of Iran's blocked funds to provide sanctions exemptions for humanitarian goods. Given that nuclear progress is Iran's bargaining chip to lift all sanctions, will Iran accept the offer?

Beeman: Sanctions exemptions for humanitarian goods are already in place. They simply are not being implemented. The amount of Iranian blocked funds is insignificant. On the other hand, Iran is not actually engaging in a nuclear weapons program, so increase or decrease in enrichment activity is being used as a mechanism to increase or decrease pressure on the United States with no actual meaningful consequence. So we see that both sides are playing a kind of Kabuki theater game with the other side promising some kind of action, but actually delivering nothing of any consequence. 

Bazaar: This is still an immature idea, and the Biden administration continues to insist that the 2015 nuclear deal be fully revived, but given the plan to resume nuclear talks on November 29, the proposal would at least provide an opportunity for U.S. government work on it. What is the benefit of this interim agreement for the United States and will it satisfy its allies as well?

Beeman: Yes, the Biden administration wants to show that it is strong diplomatically--Biden has made diplomacy a hallmark of his foreign relations policy--and so it has come up with this interim agreement device to demonstrate progress. It is unlikely, however, that Iranian officials will be willing to do anything at all without reduction in sanctions. As I stated above, humanitarian exemptions to the sanctions already exist, so the United States is really promising nothing except a willingness to actually implement the exemptions. Iranian officials will accept nothing short of meaningful action, and the "interim agreement" as leaked to the press is much to limited and weak to be effective.

Bazaar: What is your assessment of the International Atomic Energy Agency's new report about Iran before the start of the nuclear talks?

Beeman: The IAEA Report is similar to previous ones, expressing mild concern about restrictions on monitoring activity. But the current report could have been much, much harsher. The fact that Iran agreed to resume talks on renewing the JCPOA in November has blunted the IAEA criticism, which seems to have been the main purpose of the Iranian agreement to continue negotiations. It should be noted that the IAEA report emphasizes that communication between Iranian officials and the IAEA have continued and have been characterized by words such as "cooperative" and "constructive." This shows that the IAEA is interested in creating a positive atmosphere for continued engagement with Iran.

۳۰ آبان ۱۴۰۰ - ۱۵:۵۱
کد خبر: ۱۱۸٬۶۵۴

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