‘Iran deal not cast in stone, there’s still a backup plan’

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini addresses during a joint statement with Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif (R) in Lausanne April 2, 2015. (Reuters/Ruben Sprich)


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There are issues – including ballistic missiles and Iran’s alleged involvement in supporting terrorism – that could be used by Israel and backed by the US congress as an excuse to scupper the nuclear deal before June, says defense consultant Moeen Raoof.

Israel has always been
strongly opposed to any nuclear deal with Iran. At the same time,
Israel – which has so far refused to sign the non-proliferation
treaty – is suspected of having a stockpile of 80 nuclear
warheads. There is also Saudi Arabia that is seeking a way to
sabotage the nuclear deal, as well.

RT: Israel allegedly possesses a large
stockpile of nuclear weapons. Why is it so interested in what
Iran is doing?

Moeen Raoof: Israel wants to be the only power
in the Middle East because it is moving more Palestinians out of
Gaza and the West Bank, and it wants to dominate the whole area.
If there are any other nuclear powers in the area then Israel has
competition. And it doesn’t want any competition at all.

Political analyst Seyed Mohammad Marandi on Iran nuclear deal:
“[Iranian] Foreign Minister [Dr. Mohammad Javad] Zarif upon
returning to Tehran at the airport said that … the sanctions
will be removed immediately and completely, whereas the US is
claiming through the factsheet that it published on the State
Department website, and as American officials have also said,
that the sanctions will be removed partially, and also after a
period of time, and in phases, that some sanctions that are
supposedly for Iran’s support for terrorism, or what the US
calls human rights violations, these will remain in place.”

Officials wait for a meeting with officials from P5+1, the European Union and Iran at the Beau Rivage Palace Hotel in Lausanne March 31, 2015. (Reuters/Brendan Smialowski)

RT: How is Israel, in particular its Prime
Minister Netanyahu, going to respond to the breakthrough in the
talks with Iran?

MR: It hasn’t responded kindly at all. I think
there is a case of ‘good cop/bad cop’ where the
Americans in the past 10 to 15 years have always had this policy
of having a ‘bad cop’ who is against whatever agreements
they come up with. And this is the role that Israel is playing;
and also the [US] Congress is playing that role. As we know
they’ve said that the agreement could be reversed when the next
president comes in. It is a simple case of having a backup plan,
if you like.

RT: The relationship between Washington and
Teheran looks rosier than it looked a few years ago? How is
Israel going to react to this deal, which it has already
expressed much opposition to?

MORE: Obama: Historic deal reached on Iran nuclear program.

MR: The agreement reached today isn’t cast in
stone. It remains to be seen that by June unless somebody –
especially Israel – doesn’t come with another reason… for
example, they’ve been blaming Iran for the terrorism in the
region, especially in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen now. There is always
something that could go wrong between now and then. It is not a
sure thing that this agreement will stand in three months’ time,
which means that Israel again could come up with an accusation.
We know it has always over the last ten years consistently
accused Iran of being 90 days away from building a nuclear
weapon. So they could accuse Iran of hiding nuclear material and
scupper the plan completely.

Political analyst Seyed Mohammad Marandi on Iran nuclear deal:
“The US is already breaking the agreement that it has just
signed. We had the same problem last year when the joint plan
of action was signed between Iran and P5+1. Subsequently the US
repeatedly added new people to the sanctions regime, and also
new companies to the sanctions regime every couple of months
which Iranians said was a violation of the agreement.”

RT: In a speech at the UN General Assembly
three years ago, Israel’s Prime Minister used a memorable cartoon
bomb to hammer home his country’s fears of a nuclear armed
Tehran. A lot has changed since then – a new leader Rouhani made
Iran change its tone and Washington started dialogue. Do you
think Israel really will try to scupper this deal at this

MR: Definitely, I guarantee it. What is
happening is [what] President Obama today said himself that there
is also the ballistic missiles issue and also the alleged
terrorism involvement of Iran in the region. These are backup
issues that they could invoke between now and June. And I’m sure
that Israel will come up with some excuse why this plan can’t go
through. And Congress would back [it].

RT: Will they be successful and will people
see through these games, these attempts to scupper this

MR: People have been seeing these false
accusations for the past 10 years. They haven’t stopped the
Americans or Israelis from ensuring the sanctions continue to be
imposed against a nation that has said clearly that they would
never build a nuclear weapon or threatened any other nation on
this Earth. It is a simple case of what is best for “Israel
and friends”.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

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