In this week’s Action Update we focus on Iran, but as the following indicates, nothing exists in a vacuum. In our interconnected world, how countries handle one foreign policy challenge (or success) directly impacts others. We are rapidly approaching a geo-political inflection point and unfortunately, the Biden administration has not shown itself to be up to the task. It’s not too late for a course correction, but with each passing day the turn we must take becomes sharper.

The Iran-Russia Mistake

As a result of the Biden administration’s desperate attempt to look like they’re doing something on Iran, they’re ultimately making things worse – and not just on that issue. We are presently negotiating with the world’s leading state sponsor of terror and allowing Russia to serve as the intermediary. That’s the same Russia that has increasingly close ties with Iran (and China for that matter). And it’s the same Russia that is on the verge of a large-scale invasion of a democratic US ally in Ukraine.

American impotence on Iran has emboldened the strongmen of Moscow and Tehran. At this point, the Iranians can see their dream scenario on the horizon: sanctions relief and the ability to become a turn-key nuclear power. All of this is being done with Russia in the driver’s seat of negotiations with the Islamic Republic and the Biden administration essentially letting everyone know that the US is just along for the ride. Given that Tehran is still likely to get everything it wants from the US, it’s no wonder Vladimir Putin thinks he too can get away with what he wants at minimal cost.

If we are to avoid witnessing a series of international calamities and the resulting human suffering – stretching from Europe to the Middle East to east Asia – the Biden administration must internalize the simple fact that American weakness enables the spread of tyranny, but the opposite is also true.

The Simple Solution

We are not alone in viewing the Biden administration’s path as ending in disaster. Recently, nearly 200 members of the House of Representatives sent a letter to President Biden making clear that the details in the reports coming out of the negotiations with Iran are unacceptable. In the letter, the Members of Congress make abundantly clear that they will work to thwart any effort that does not produce an agreement with Iran that benefits the US and yank back the Islamic Republic’s dash towards a nuclear weapons capability.

And as the elected officials note in their missive, the law is on their side: “We will demand that any such agreement be submitted to Congress pursuant to the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015, and we will use the law’s 30-day review period to warn our colleagues, the American public and the private sector about any dangers and flaws of such an agreement.”

We’ve been down the road of an executive only agreement with Iran. It was fatally flawed and tossed in the garbage as soon as there was an occupant of the Oval Office more interested in achieving tangible results than signing/adhering to meaningless pieces of paper. The simple solution is for the Biden administration to change its objective. The end goal shouldn’t be an agreement with Iran. The goal should be putting an end to Iran’s nuclear blackmail. An agreement with Iran could be a means to achieve that, but such isn’t in the offing if the Biden administration continues to acquiesce to every Iranian demand while ignoring every Arab and Israeli concern.

The Likely Solution

Speaking of the Arabs and the Israelis, on Monday evening local time, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett traveled to Bahrain on a historic visit to the Gulf Arab nation. This visit is another step forward cementing the importance of the Abraham Accords and comes just a few months after Bennett visited the United Arab Emirates.

An interesting tidbit of news, that we’ve no doubt the Iranians are focused on (as well they should be), is that Israel will likely station a naval officer to an official post inside Bahrain. This is significant because, like Israel, Bahrain, the UAE, Saudi Arabia and several other Arab nations view Iran as the preeminent threat in the region.

Much has been made of the historic nature of the Abraham Accords and the economic and cultural possibilities that these agreements enable, and that is understandably what we all want to focus on. But we should not forget the importance of the ever-deepening ties between Israel and the Gulf Arab nations in the context of confronting Iran.

One day, the Abraham Accords may be the linchpin in saving the region from a nuclear armed radical Islamist state bent on regional domination. Take note President Biden: that’s the kind of agreement worth making.

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