We All Support the Framework Agreement with Iran

No Iran War

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Americans for Peace Now- “During the coming period in which the parties will be hammering out the details of a final agreement and its implementation, Congress should adopt a policy of ‘do no harm’. This week’s agreement demonstrates that there is a real chance that diplomacy can roll back Iran’s nuclear program and verifiably curb the threat of Iran obtaining nuclear weapons; Congress owes it to the American people to give further diplomacy every possible chance.”[4/2]
Arms Control Association- “Congress must help to strengthen, not undermine, this vital diplomatic effort. Lawmakers who want to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran and avoid the United States’ involvement in another war in the region should refrain from moving legislation that could derail the ongoing talks and/or enable partisan in Congress who want to blow up an effective diplomatic solution.” [4/2]
Atlantic Council- “The framework must be put into the context of what other alternatives exist to inhibit Iran’s ability to build a nuclear weapon. These measures seem to us better than the alternatives. It is also difficult to see how additional sanctions beyond the very broad and comprehensive measures already achieved would bring a better result. There is a very real risk if this agreement is rejected or blocked that it would split the United States from the P-5+1 and European Union whose cooperation on sanctions has been of paramount importance.” [4/3]
Berim- “Negotiators have agreed to the outlines of a framework that will solve the Iran nuclear issue. There’s going to be much to do in the coming days, but for now we should take a moment to celebrate. [Thank you to] the President, for staying true to his promise to negotiate with Iran and proving to Washington that diplomacy works.” [4/2]
Center for American Progress- “Efforts to undermine the talks at this stage would undermine not only U.S. national security, but also that of our closest allies and the interests of the international community. Congress should give the negotiators the time and breathing room to finish their work and secure the best possible deal.” [4/2]
Center for Arms Control and Nonproliferation- “This is great news, and a testament to the power of diplomacy. Of course there is much more work to be done, and negotiators will have to remain steadfast in their resolve to work through the final details.” [4/2]
Center for a New American Security- “Congress played a historic role in helping to create the sanctions pressure on Iran that brought it to the negotiating table, and the possible threat of legislation was also an important tool in putting pressure on all sides to move forward with today’s agreement… However, acting even more aggressively, and passing new legislation to threaten Iran and tie the President’s hands, could backfire and seriously undermine diplomacy.” [4/2]
Church of the Brethren, Office of Public Witness- “The framework agreement significantly limits Iran’s capacity to produce material for a nuclear weapon in the near future and is hopefully a building block towards more diplomacy with Iran and other important countries in the region. Anytime diplomacy pushes the world towards peace we applaud these efforts, and we also hope that this agreement will lead to a more substantial conversation about nuclear weapons across the globe.” [4/7]
CodePink- “We know all too well that war doesn’t work–– just look at Iraq today. Only diplomacy can resolve the nuclear dispute, and we are thankful that the Obama administration has been so determined to achieve a peaceful solution to this complex situation.” [4/2]
CREDO Action- “Allowing our negotiators to finalize a deal should be a no-brainer for any member of Congress who cares about American national security. But with Republicans like Sen. John McCain hell bent on bombing Iran, it’s going to depend on holding enough Democratic votes to sustain an almost certain presidential veto of legislation tailor-made to destroy our diplomatic progress and sabotage ongoing negotiations. We want to be very clear: A vote for anti-diplomacy legislation like Corker-Menendez or Kirk-Menendez is a vote for war. And like the vote to give George W. Bush a blank check for war with Iraq, any Democrat who casts a vote for war with Iran should expect to be held accountable for that decision for the rest of their career.” [4/2]
CREDO, MoveOn, Democracy for America, Daily Kos, and USAction- “Senate Democrats are now faced with a choice: Support President Obama’s diplomacy or vote with Republicans to potentially start a war with Iran. There is no third option. A historic vote on a nuclear deal with Iran is coming. Like the 2002 vote to give President George W. Bush authorization to invade Iraq, Democrats who end up on the wrong side of it will have to answer for their decision for the rest of their careers.” [4/8]
Foundation for Middle East Peace- “Congress must ensure that diplomacy can continue to produce results. All of the parties to this agreement have to fend off domestic critics who will not be satisfied with any realistic deal – this agreement must be given an opportunity to achieve its goals.” [4/2]
Friends Committee on National Legislation- “The Senate Foreign Relations Committee could soon vote on legislation that would entrust Congress with veto power over a final agreement with Iran. That would be a mistake. With so much at stake, Congress should let our diplomats do their job and complete the agreement before any further action.” [4/3]
Institute for Policy Studies- By Phyllis Bennis. “Senate Republicans are hoping to win over enough Democrats to override Obama’s certain veto of a bill that would let Congress vote to reject the agreement. At the end of the day it will be public opinion that matters. A Washington Post poll in the last days before the agreement found 59-percent support for a negotiated settlement. In Lausanne we saw a crucial victory of diplomacy over war. Now we’ve got to protect it.” [4/2]
International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran- “This initial agreement presents renewed opportunities for human rights. ‘Political space in Iran, long consumed by the nuclear conflict, should now be freed up for the discussion of civil liberties in the country,’ said Hadi Ghaemi, Executive Director of the Campaign.” [4/2]
International Crisis Group- “To ensure that this laudable step will lead to a lasting accord, we urge the negotiators to preserve the momentum and promptly finalise the remaining details – as well as critics to give them a chance. Should the negotiations collapse, Iran will accelerate its nuclear program just as the West will step up sanctions. This would lead to a new escalation of tensions in the region and possibly trigger a military confrontation. The agreement’s opponents offer no realistic alternative.” [4/2]
J Street- “With the critical details of a comprehensive agreement yet to be worked out, it is more important than ever that Congress not take actions that will undermine America’s negotiators at the table. There must also be no question that, if a final agreement ultimately cannot be reached, the United States is not to blame. We therefore continue to oppose new sanctions legislation currently before the Senate, and remain committed to working with Senators and Members of Congress toward legislation that provides for robust and responsible Congressional oversight of Iranian compliance with any agreement reached.” [4/2]
Just Foreign Policy- “This latest development proves that diplomacy is working. But even with this landmark success, Republicans in Congress will continue to try to derail a final deal. In particular, two pieces of legislation Republicans are trying to push through the Senate—the Kirk-Menendez sanctions bill and the Corker-Menendez bill that would impose procedural hurdles in the way of a deal.” [4/2]
MoveOn.org- “This is perhaps the most significant foreign policy accomplishment of the Obama presidency, and offers the promise of a peaceful path with Iran, rather than a rush into an unnecessary war. Yet Republican war hawks—and too many Democrats who are siding with them—are continuing their crusade against the president and trying to sabotage this deal. Let me put this simply: The alternative to diplomacy with Iran is war. Any member of Congress who sabotages diplomacy is putting American lives at risk. MoveOn members across the country are mobilizing immediately in support of this framework, and we will hold any elected officials who sabotage diplomacy accountable for the rest of their political careers.” [4/2]
National Iranian American Council- “If these commitments are converted into a final comprehensive deal over the next three months, President Obama and Secretary Kerry and their partners will have secured through diplomacy what neither war nor sanctions could ever have accomplished. This has been a tough negotiation, and a final nuclear deal will bring a hard-fought peace. But the progress that has been achieved is substantial and was at one time unthinkable.” [4/2]
National Iranian American Council, J Street, and the Arab American Institute- “This deal may provide an important first step towards de-escalating regional tensions and pave the way for resolving the many conflicts that still persist. The lesson that we all must learn from these successful negotiations is that diplomacy works. This deal demonstrates that no disagreement should be so deeply entrenched that it cannot be resolved through the give and take of serious diplomacy.” [4/6]
National Security Network- “While much work remains to be done to achieve a final agreement, the framework demonstrates that the Obama Administration and international partners have taken a responsible approach to the negotiations and have resisted signing any deal that would not adequately achieve the vital goal of preventing Iran from gaining nuclear weapons. Those who have called for taking military action against Iran should step back and look at what diplomacy can achieve.” [4/2]
Pax Christi International- This agreement should be welcomed as the first sign of rapprochement between Iran and the West. It has shown that the two sides can negotiate with each other, improve security and bring about some improvement in the lives of hard-pressed Iranians. It enables Iran to play a more active role in regional politics and may lead to greater collaboration between Iran and other Middle Eastern countries with the aim of averting a disastrous Shia-Sunni conflict. Above all, it has prevented the alternative, namely a disastrous war that would have endangered Iran and the entire world. [4/10]
Peace Action- “The success of these talks, again proves that diplomacy works. Instead of isolation, sanctions that don’t affect leaders or military intervention that costs vast amounts of blood and treasure and untold long term costs and unintended consequences, the U.S. used dialogue, negotiations and the international community to solve conflict.” [4/2]
Peace Action West- “This diplomatic breakthrough is a bold, if incomplete, step forward for global peace and security. This agreement would block all the major paths towards an Iranian bomb and thus reduce a major source of international tension. Americans who want to avoid another war in the Middle East should all cheer this progress.” [4/2]
Ploughshares Fund- “This is a critical step toward a final agreement preventing Iran from building a nuclear bomb without putting U.S. troops in harm’s way. It is good for America, it is good for Israel, and it is good for our allies. It is a big win for global security.” [4/2]
Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans- “We welcome today’s announcement and hope that it will lead to a final comprehensive settlement, averting another war in the Middle East.” [4/2]
Truman National Security Project- “Today’s milestone keeps Iran’s program frozen and rolled back. It marks an important step toward imposing one of the strongest verification regimes in the history of arms control, requiring evidence of Iranian compliance every step along the way.” [4/2]
United Methodist Church, General Board of Church and Society- “It is time for members of Congress to stifle their attempts to interfere in this crucial negotiation that could help ensure world peace by stabilizing a situation fraught with peril and complicated by unreasoned rhetoric.” [4/2]
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops- “Our Committee continues to oppose Congressional efforts that seek to undermine the negotiation process or make a responsible multi-party agreement more difficult to achieve and implement. The alternative to an agreement leads toward armed conflict, an outcome of profound concern to the Church.” [4/13]
US Labor Against the War- “Because hundreds of thousands of people have flooded the offices of their members of Congress with their demand for patient negotiations, an agreement has finally been reached that provides verifiable assurance that Iran is living up to its commitment.” [4/2]
WAND- “Today’s announcement is a potent symbol of the progress that has been made in guarding against both a nuclear Iran and war. WAND is proud that the United States and its partners pursued the path of peaceful negotiations. Today, we are a step closer to avoiding war.” [4/2]
Win Without War- “Today’s progress not only ensures that Iran will not get a nuclear weapon, but it demonstrates precisely how America can win without war. If Congress is successful in sabotaging this framework agreement, it will mean an unconstrained Iranian nuclear program, the loss of international inspectors, and a dramatically increased risk of war. When viewed against these dangerous alternatives, only a fool would choose to sabotage peace. Indeed, those who oppose this historic opportunity offer no viable alternative. At a time when much of the Middle East is engulfed in war, the U.S. is on the verge of achieving one of our most pressing national security goals without dropping a bomb.” [4/2]
VoteVets- “Today’s announcement of an agreement on a framework moving forward, by the US, our P5+1 partners, and Iran, is another breakthrough, in the historic negotiations to end the immediate threat of a nuclear Iran. How many issues have been agreed upon is a testament to the progress these negotiations have made, and will continue to make. Yet, the fact that there is no final agreement sends a very strong signal to all of us in the US, and especially those in Congress – the United States will stand up firmly to Iran, when Iran’s demands conflict with our best interests.” [4/2]

Experts and Pundits

James M. Acton, Carnegie Institute- “The understandings reached today must still be translated into a final, binding agreement. If they are, then stringent restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program—some of which will last for 25 years—will push Tehran downfield, well outside of the nuclear red zone. Should Iran violate the agreement, intrusive verification provisions—including on Iran’s supply chain and to detect undeclared nuclear activities—stand a good chance of enabling early detection, thus permitting a unilateral or international response.” [4/2]
James Acton, Carnegie Institute; Barry Blechman, Co-Founder Stimson Center; Joe Cirincione, President of Ploughshares Fund; and 27 other signatories- “The agreement will strengthen U.S. security and that of our partners in the region. Rigorous monitoring measures will remain in place not just throughout the long duration of the agreement but even after the core limits of the agreement expire, helping ensure that any movement toward nuclear weapons will be detected and providing the opportunity to intervene decisively to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.” [4/6]
Madeleine Albright, Fmr. Secretary of State- “I think it’s a good deal… We’ve had the issue of Iran and nuclear weapon for a long time. This is a way to limit it and have oversight. We now have a control system. Can’t visualize that it would be better not to have it or have a bombing campaign. Diplomacy has produced a viable agreement that will limit Iran’s capabilities to have a nuclear weapon.” [4/2]
Madeleine Albright, Fmr. Secretary of State; Brent Scowcroft, Sandy Berger, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Fmr. National Security Advisors; and over 50 other signatories- “In view of this hopeful progress, we call on the U.S. Congress to take no action that would impede further progress or undermine the American negotiators’ efforts to complete the final comprehensive agreement on time. The Congress should examine the announced framework, asking itself whether the potential for a comprehensive, verifiable accord is preferable to the current standoff with Iran or other alternatives as a means to ensure that Iran will not acquire a nuclear weapon.” [4/6]
Alexei Arbatov, Carnegie Institute- “The deal with Iran is a good illustration to a well-known maxim: politics is the art of possible. The present framework political deal is better than no deal and acknowledged failure of negotiations, which would make the new war in the Gulf inevitable with dire implications for international security and the non-proliferation regime.” [4/2]
Peter Beinart, New America Foundation- “More American sanctions alone won’t have much effect. After all, the United States began seriously sanctioning Iran in the mid-1990s. Yet for a decade and a half, those sanctions had no major impact on Iran’s nuclear program. That’s largely because foreign companies ignored American pleas to stop doing business with the Islamic Republic.” [4/6]
Phyllis Bennis, Institute for Policy Studies- “This isn’t a treaty. This is an agreement that will be signed between the U.S., its five allies, and the Iranians. And Congress isn’t going to be the one to make that decision. So I think that one of the key questions is going to be whether the public opinion, which right now is running about 59 percent, almost six out of ten people across the country, across parties, across everything, want a negotiated solution.” [4/2]
Barry Blechman, Stimson Center- “Before senators or congressmen consider trying to kill the ‘framework agreement’ before it is turned into the detailed document that the negotiators are committed to accomplish by July 1, they might consider the cost of a new war in the Middle East. A U.S. attack would certainly fracture the coalition that has enforced the sanctions. China and Russia wouldn’t wait a Tehran minute to multiply their trade with, and investment in, Iran.” [4/2]
Zbigniew Brzezinski, Fmr. National Security Advisor- “[The framework is] a victory for President Obama and geopolitical stability.” [4/3]
Nicholas Burns, Fmr. Lead US Negotiator on Iran- It is “a sensible step forward for Iran and the west. This tentative progress is testament to the power of diplomacy. President Obama and John Kerry deserve credit for persisting with negotiations despite trenchant opposition.” [4/3]
William J. Burns, The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace- “The understanding outlines a solid comprehensive agreement that would increase, for at least a decade, the time it would take Iran to enrich enough weapons-grade material for a single bomb from the current two-to-three-month timeline to at least one year. It would significantly reduce Iran’s stockpile of low-enriched uranium, substantially limit the country’s enrichment capacity and constrain Iranian research and development on more advanced centrifuges.” [4/3]
Joe Cirincione, Ploughshares Fund- “The stunning Iran nuclear deal achieves all of our key national security goals and then some. It is a remarkable triumph that, once finalized in late June, will dramatically shrink Iran’s nuclear program, freeze it, lock it up and put it under a microscope. There are many details to work out, but the only reason to be against this deal is if you never wanted a deal in the first place. That, of course, was the position of President Obama’s political and ideological opponents here and abroad. They were caught flat-footed by the breadth and depth of the deal, left with little more than hyperbole and insults.” [4/3]
Joe Cirincione, Ploughshares Fund- “If Congress passes inept new sanctions and restrictions, the whole deal will crumble. We will be blamed; the sanctions regime will collapse; Iran will ramp back up all the work that negotiations have kept frozen for the past 17 months. We will then have to either allow an unconstrained nuclear program or start a war with one of the largest military powers in the Middle East. This deal is by far the best of all possible options.” [4/2]
Hillary Clinton, Fmr. Secretary of State- “The understanding that the major world powers have reached with Iran is an important step toward a comprehensive agreement that would prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon and strengthen the security of the United States, Israel and the region… Getting the rest of the way to a final deal by June won’t be easy, but it is absolutely crucial.” [4/2]
Roger Cohen, New York Times- “Blocking Iran’s path to a bomb, avoiding another war with a Muslim country, and re-establishing diplomatic contact with a stable power hostile to the butchers of the Islamic State amounts to a compelling case for an America faced by a fragmenting Middle East.” [4/7]
Tom Collina, Ploughshares Fund- “The U.S. Senate should avoid taking any steps to undermine this framework, such as holding a premature vote. This could kill the deal before it is finished. And the alternatives are much worse – an unconstrained Iranian nuclear program or another war in the Middle East. The choice is clear.” [4/2]
Anthony Cordesman, Center for Strategic and International Studies- “The proposed parameters and framework in the Proposed Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action has the potential to meet every test in creating a valid agreement… It can block both an Iranian nuclear threat and a nuclear arms race in the region, and it is a powerful beginning to creating a full agreement, and creating the prospect for broader stability in other areas.” [4/2]
Kelsey Davenport, Arms Control Association- “A deal based on the understandings outlined by the two sides will clearly be a net-plus for nuclear nonproliferation. When and if fully negotiated and implemented, the multi-year arrangement will significantly extend the time it would take for Iran to amass enough bomb-grade uranium for weapons–to about 12 months–and for all practical purposes it will effectively block Iran’s potential to produce plutonium for weapons.” [4/2]
Robert Einhorn, Brookings Institution- “They produced a surprisingly complete and detailed framework that provides a promising foundation for working out the details of a comprehensive agreement… The negotiators deserve to have the time and space to continue their efforts, without outside interference, to find out whether a sound agreement is achievable.” [4/7]
Mieke Eoyang, Third Way- “The deal significantly rolls back and then freezes the Iranian nuclear program for a very long time. Most parts of its program are frozen for 15 years, others for 10 years. It takes off-line the majority of the infrastructure Iran would need to make a dash for the bomb. Most importantly, the deal puts Iran under a very significant inspection regime that would detect attempts by Iran to develop a covert pathway to the bomb… This preliminary deal looks good to us.” [4/9]
Haleh Esfandiari, The Wilson Center- “Women, I think, also hope a nuclear deal that leads to a relaxation of tensions with the U.S. and the international community will also lead to a relaxation of the many social restrictions they face at home.” [4/3]
Lt. Gen. Robert G. Gard (Ret.)- “The reality is that the outline of the framework agreement is indeed a good one – blocking all of Iran’s paths to building a nuclear weapon and imposing a rigorous inspection regime in exchange for phased sanctions relief. But what this debate has lacked, and will likely be missing in the coming weeks, is discussion of the possible alternatives to a negotiated agreement with Iran… I’m hopeful, even optimistic, that the United States and its partners can reach a final formal agreement based on the framework that will effectively block Iran from building nuclear weapons. But if the framework agreement is undercut by Congress, those crying “bad deal” should be forced to answer: What’s your alternative?” [4/13]
Robert J. Goldston, Professor of Astrophysical Sciences at Princeton University- “Amazing outline of a deal, really. What more, exactly, would we ask for?” [4/3]
Richard Haass, The Council of Foreign Relations- “I’ll be honest, I am pleasantly surprised by the substance of the deal. As a skeptic, I’ve to say, it’s a good deal.” [4/2]
Larry Hanauer, RAND Corporation- “The agreement is a much better deal for the United States than had been expected. It will stop Iranian weapons-related research and enrichment activities for 10 to 15 years, cutting off all paths to a bomb and extending the “breakout” time — the time it would take for Iran to develop a weapon covertly — from two or three months to a full year. Most importantly, however, the agreement calls for an extremely intrusive 20-year inspection and verification regime that will quickly detect any attempt by Iran to cheat… This diplomatic agreement will be more effective and less costly — in terms of money, lives, and American influence — than a military campaign that would mire the United States in another Middle East war.” [4/6]
Hart Research Poll- “61 percent of the country favors the deal, while 34 percent oppose it. Still, in a measure of the strength of the opinions, 57 percent of [all] respondents said they agreed with supporters of the deal and 38 percent said they agreed with opponents.” [4/10]
Gen. Michael Hayden, Fmr. CIA and NSA Director- “It’s more than I thought we would demand, so in that sense I’m heartened… I freely admit, plans B, C, D, and E aren’t all that attractive either.” [4/3]
Olli Heinonen, Fmr. Chief Inspector of IAEA- “It appears to be a fairly comprehensive deal with most important parameters.” [4/2]
David Ignatius, Washington Post- “The pact, once concluded, would be preferable to any realistic alternative . . . The framework delivered more than many skeptics had feared.” [4/2]
Bruce Jentleson, National Security Network- “The Corker-Menendez bill weaves a procedural spider web for congressional review and includes a poison pill provision that hinders, rather than helps, getting a good deal… Congress doesn’t need Corker-Menendez to have a significant say on an Iran deal. The Obama administration would do well to more closely and regularly consult with congressional leaders, privately but genuinely — not just briefing or lobbying — just as other presidents have done on other major arms control issues.” [4/13]
Dalia Dassa Kaye, RAND Corporation- “The framework will probably give the administration enough support to stave off measures in Congress that could derail a final deal before the June deadline. And the Iranian leadership is going to have a hard time turning back on a deal that is being widely celebrated among the Iranian people. The fact that the parties have gotten this far suggests they may have too much invested in the process at this stage to turn back.” [4/6]
Wardah Khalid, FCNL- “Despite the broad support, some members of Congress showed impatience by introducing legislation in an effort to precipitously weigh in on the deal. These include the Kirk-Menendez bill, which would impose additional sanctions, and the Corker bill, which gives Congress veto power over any agreement reached with Iran. Such short-sighted behavior is unwarranted, as Congress will later be able to weigh in by lifting sanctions in accordance with Iranian compliance. Worse, it also risks completely derailing the talks.” [4/4]
Mana Kharrazi, Iranian Alliances Across Borders- “The historic nuclear agreement will hopefully usher in a new era in US-Iran relations. It is my hope that this agreement allows for a heightened level of understanding and cultural exchange between Iranians and Americans. The Iranian people have struggled under sanctions and worked tirelessly for this agreement to come into existence… . We can finally move past our history and look toward a peaceful future that allows for greater cooperation and understanding.” [4/3]
Daryl Kimball, Arms Control Association- “Serious lawmakers must assess the deal on the basis of its overall impact on reducing Iran’s nuclear capacity and improving the ability of the international community to detect any future Iranian weapons program. It is understandable that lawmakers want a say in the matter, [but they should act to] strengthen, not undermine, this vital diplomatic effort.” [4/3]
Paul Kawika Martin, Peace Action- “It is clear that the negotiations with Iran are headed toward an agreement that benefits all parties. Americans already support an agreement. Now Congress needs to show its support and refrain from thwarting an accord with any legislation.” [4/2]
Adm. Mike Mullen (Ret.), Fmr. Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff- “Defense and diplomacy are not mutually exclusive. If the latter can prevent the use of the former to achieve the same end, we as a nation–and the world as a community–are better served. So, let us fairly debate the merits of this deal. Let us focus on the details of implementation and verification. But let us not in the process forget the larger, longer good it may yield.” [4/16]
Alireza Nader, RAND Corporation- “If everything collapses and Rouhani has nothing to show for his efforts, the balance may go toward conservatives and ultra-conservatives and they can make it hard for him to go back to table.” [4/6]
Alireza Nader, RAND Corporation- “I was surprised to see the level of detail in the fact sheet. Iran has made important concessions on a number of issues, from decreasing its centrifuge numbers to accepting an intrusive inspections regime.” [4/6]
Bill O’Reilly, Political Commentator- “You don’t want a war with Iran…You don’t want to bomb that country because the unintended consequences will set the world aflame. So if you can get something that’s decent, you give it a shot. I think that’s a legitimate point.” [4/2]
Trita Parsi, National Iranian American Council- “It’s only now – thanks to their persistent and tireless diplomacy – that the growth of the Iranian nuclear program has not only been stopped, it has been reversed. This is the first time that the number of centrifuges Iran operates will have been reduced. No other policy has achieved this. The critics can’t touch this. They have not only been wrong in how to handle the Iranian nuclear program – they have been wrong on almost anything about Iran.” [4/3]
Matt Pelak, Truman National Security Project- “Senator Cotton, please stand down. Despite your best efforts, tough diplomacy is keeping America safe. Negotiations have frozen and even rolled back Iran’s nuclear program for the first time in history. The framework agreement represents a historic opportunity to block Iran’s paths to a nuclear weapon, and it does so without costing a single American service member’s life. At least we can agree that politicians have bad habits to kick, starting with “beating the drums of war.” [4/10]
George Perkovich, Carnegie Institute- “What was announced today, at least in the U.S. fact sheet, is a very positive development and represents significant progress. Something particularly positive was on the inspections side, where it talks about monitoring the whole supply chain of the Iranian nuclear program. That’s a very big deal. Related to that is that Iran will basically declare and dedicate a procurement channel so everything that needs to be imported for their nuclear program would go through this channel. This greatly eases the monitoring requirement.” [4/2]
Amb. Thomas Pickering- “This is a good agreement and better than many expected… On the face of it, the arrangements look like a good exchange of sensible limitations on Iran’s nuclear efforts and sanctions relief that is quite extensive, but designed to kick in as the IAEA certifies compliance by Tehran.” [4/16]
Jon Rainwater, Peace Action West- “The deals’ discontents in Congress offer no alternatives. Without an agreement, the inspectors go home and Iran can do what it likes. That leaves us with an approach to Iranian nuclear nonproliferation truly based on faith — and perhaps prayer. Ultimately, Congress will weigh in because only Congress can permanently lift sanctions.” [4/3]
Ed Rodgers, BGR Group- “If you’re a Republican congressional leader, your best option is probably to mostly go along with the deal… Don’t try to blow up the framework… And I would try to placate the rank-and-file in Congress with something other than a vote on the agreement.” [4/3]
Dennis Ross, Washington Institute- “Should the framework understanding with Iran be finalized in a deal, its terms would give us high confidence that the Iranians would not become a nuclear weapons state for the next 15 years. Even after that, for 25 years, we would be in a good position to know if Iran was seeking to divert materials to a covert nuclear program given the framework’s provision for monitoring the whole supply chain — including the mining and milling of uranium, the conversion of yellow cake to UF-6 gas, its purification in centrifuges, (and) centrifuge assembly.” [4/20]
Dennis Ross, Washington Institute- “For me, the deal is acceptable – provided that the transparency is real, we have assured response mechanisms to any noncompliance that cannot be blocked, and we establish in advance what the consequences or price will be for every category of violation.” [4/20]
Karim Sadjadpour, Carnegie Institute- “The supreme leader now faces a difficult dilemma: Either crush the spirit of tens of millions of Iranians who are for the deal or demoralize a hardline base that has long opposed any accommodation with America. At a time when Iran is hemorrhaging hundreds of billions due to sanctions, tens of billions due to the collapse in oil prices, and billions sustaining the Assad regime in Syria, a nuclear deal is an economic imperative for the country.” [4/2]
Gary Samore, Harvard University- “Congress would be wise to stop threatening precipitous sanctions legislation if an agreement is not reached by June 30. Perversely, such threats strengthen Iran’s hand by putting pressure on the U.S. negotiators to make concessions to avoid congressional action that would blow up the talks. Iran is counting on divisions between the administration and Congress (and between the United States and Israel) to get a better deal. Instead, the United States should present a common front and let time work on its side.” [4/3]
Kori Schake, The Hoover Institution- “There are five good reasons to… support this deal. 1. The inspection provisions are solid  2. They’ve connected it to regional concerns  3. The sanctions regime was eroding, anyway 4. They released the terms of the deal. 5. It closes the most dangerous gap.” [4/2]
Susan Shaer, Women’s Action for New Directions- “The nuclear agreement announced on April 2 is nothing short of a major breakthrough. As many have pointed out, there is still a long way to go between here and implementation… Hawks on both sides will work hard to scuttle this success. Senator Mark Kirk, for example, who has supported imposing more sanctions on Iran since the interim agreement was announced, compared President Obama to Neville Chamberlain making a deal with Hitler prior to the start of World War II and likened the deal to Nazi appeasement.” [4/3]
Greg Thielmann, Arms Control Association- “I’m pleasantly surprised that some of those details provide better news than we expected. It’s a pretty good deal.” [4/3]
Jim Wallis, Sojourners- “Diplomacy is never perfect, but when it succeeds, it is far superior to war, where the consequences and costs are always greater than expected. That is why we should give this potential nuclear agreement with Iran the chance to succeed, albeit with intense scrutiny every step of the way. The framework announced last week was better than most people expected.” [4/7]
Amos Yadlin, Fmr. Israeli Chief of Military Intelligence- “Considering that Iran now has 19,000 centrifuges, the agreement provides quite a good package. One has to think what might have happened if, as aspired to by Netanyahu and Steinitz, negotiations had collapsed. Had that happened, Iran could have decided on a breakout, ignored the international community, refused to respond to questions about its arsenal, continued to quickly enrich and put together a bomb before anyone could have had time to react. And therefore, with this in mind, it’s not a bad agreement.” [4/3]
Tong Zhao, The Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy- “Given the very comprehensive and stringent restrictions and verification mechanisms in the agreement, China will be very pleased that this will help strengthen the international nonproliferation regime by setting a very positive precedent for addressing the proliferation concerns associated with dual-use nuclear capability and activities in non-nuclear weapons states.” [4/2]

Members of Congress

Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA)- “This framework could form the basis of a historic agreement that will peacefully prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, thereby removing one of the greatest threats to the security of a region which certainly needs no more instability.” [4/2]
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR)- “Despite efforts by many to scuttle diplomacy with Iran, today’s framework agreement is an extension of steady, incremental progress from all sides, since day one. It makes clear that all parties are committed to securing the only alternative to military action in Iran, which is a negotiated solution to their nuclear program… We’ve set the stage for a paradigm shift in the country and in the region, but much heavy lifting remains because there’s no deal until a final deal is reached. As a result, Congress must restrain itself from unhelpful actions in the coming months. It is not constructive to demand a ‘better deal’ that no negotiator could secure.” [4/2]
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA)- “Congress has a choice: support these negotiations or disrupt them and potentially jeopardize this historic opportunity to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. We don’t yet know the details of a final deal, but initial reports are promising.” [4/2]
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA)- “To force Congress to weigh in now on the Iran nuclear talks before a final deal has been completed would be a reckless rush to judgment. It would undermine negotiations at a critical moment and could derail a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to deal with this looming threat.” [4/8]
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA)- “I am writing to urge you to heed the bipartisan advice of leaders like Madeleine Albright, Richard Lugar, Carl Levin and Nancy Kassebaum, and delay consideration of any legislation on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action until a final agreement has been reached. These esteemed leaders were among the more than 50 former foreign policy and military leaders who wrote recently that, ‘In view of this hopeful progress, we call on the U.S. Congress to take no action that would impede further progress or undermine the American negotiators’ efforts.’” [4/8]
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH)- “It appears the framework agreement with Iran reached by the U.S. and other UN Security Council nations will serve as the basis for the kind of comprehensive and verifiable agreement for which we had been hoping. I have not seen the details, and look forward to being briefed on its terms. But the initial reports are positive, and Congress must now give the Administration the time to fill in the details necessary to make the agreement effective, strong and durable.” [4/2]
Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD)- “I want to make sure that it’s clear that [the Corker Bill] is a congressional review-and-notification bill and not one that takes on directly the substance of the agreements being negotiated.” [4/8]
Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE)- “Some believe that no deal is the best deal. But I believe we must give peace a chance. As the president has said repeatedly, he will not be party to a bad agreement and, on first blush, this looks like a pretty good deal for the United States. It is not a deal based on trust – it is one based only on verification and one that becomes binding only if the Iranians hold up their end of the deal. Once we’ve had a chance to drill down on the details of the agreement, we may very well find that this is a very good deal for everyone.” [4/2]
Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX)- “This is a positive step towards cutting off Iran’s pathway to a nuclear weapon and an arms race in the Middle East. I voted for legislation that enacted sanctions which brought Iran to the negotiating table. These sanctions will continue to remain in place until a final deal is agreed to and implemented. Critical work remains to negotiate a final deal that is comprehensive and verifies that Iran fully follows through on its commitments.” [4/2]
Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN)- “Those who sought to undermine these negotiations would be well served to remember that the alternative to an agreement is an Iran with no limits on or international monitoring of its efforts to enrich uranium. We should not let the perfect be the enemy of the good, especially when the “perfect” that many seek is unrealistic. I, along with many of my colleagues, look forward to learning the details of the final June 30th agreement and hope it is a step in the right direction towards a non-nuclear Iran.” [4/2]
Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA)- “[The deal provides] a very robust, intrusive inspections regime. A lot of critics are disingenuous. There’s no honest attempt to analyze the agreement.” [4/3]
Rep. John Conyers (D-MI)- “The framework agreement will not only promote long-term security in the Middle East but also help remove the short-term specter of a destructive military confrontation. Today’s announcement will unquestionably make the Middle East and the broader world safe.” [4/2]
Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX)- This agreement provides a sound framework to make our families safer. It is not based on trust, it is based on [verification]… But a congressional vote now to veto technical implementation of this agreement would endanger every family in America and Israel. All of us, who do not trust war as the answer, must work together to support this peaceful resolution.” [4/2]
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL)- “I’m encouraged to hear that negotiators have agreed to a framework—a major step toward achieving a final deal. Our shared goal in the United States is clear: to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran. The stakes couldn’t be higher and I commend Secretary Kerry and our entire negotiating team for their commitment to finding a diplomatic solution that guarantees our security and that of our allies.” [4/2]
Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN)- “President Obama, President Rouhani and the P5+1 remain committed to the difficult work of diplomacy—even as hardliners in the United States and Iran call for war. Peaceful diplomacy, especially at a time when the divide between the United States and Iran is so wide, is always preferable to war. This agreement shows that there is political will on all sides to cross the finish line to a final agreement.” [4/2]
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)– “There is no realistic solution to Iran’s nuclear program outside of a verifiable, broad-based and ironclad diplomatic agreement. After being briefed and reviewing the parameters, I believe the negotiators have made substantial progress and that this is a sufficient framework to produce a final agreement by the end of June.” [4/2]
Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE)- “In a perfect world, Iran’s nuclear program would be completely eliminated. However, that outcome is unlikely to be fully achieved under current circumstances. Here are the options: First, we could continue on our present course of sanctions, threats, and impotent discourse. Second, a limited agreement could be reached that, if verifiable, constrains Iran’s steady movement toward nuclear weapons capacity. Third, we and others can press for stronger concessions, but this assumes that the international coalition does not fray—and considering that the Chinese and Russians are not reliable, that’s a big assumption. The fourth option is military strikes.” [4/10]
Sen. Al Franken (D-MN)– “Americans want to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and they would prefer to do it through diplomacy rather than military action. This breakthrough agreement is an important step toward that goal. I believe that Congress now should give our negotiators time and space to work out the details of a strong, verifiable comprehensive agreement.” [4/2]
Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ)- “We now have demonstrable progress in keeping the worlds’ most sinister weapons out of Iran’s hands, and a success to build upon towards one day achieving normalized relations. It is a diplomatic victory that exhibits exceptional leadership from President Obama. Lawmakers from every political persuasion should applaud and support his ongoing efforts.” [4/2]
Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA)– “While some of my colleagues have objected to negotiations with Iran, it must be noted that thanks to these historic diplomatic efforts, the world is further from a nuclear-armed Iran and the risk of war over this issue. Congress has passed, and I have supported, multiple rounds of sanctions legislation against Iran that has expressly granted the president the authority to waive or suspend sanctions.” [4/2]
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA)- “If the deal ends up looking a lot like the framework, I think the president will be able to sell it.” [4/16]
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA)- “I am a strong supporter of President Obama’s efforts to find a diplomatic path to end Iran’s nuclear ambitions, which is why structuring a way for Congress to be involved without undercutting negotiations is so important to me. The framework agreement announced by Secretary of State John Kerry and the P5+1 negotiators earlier this month includes significant concessions from Iran that I believe, if fully implemented, would protect the world from nuclear proliferation in the region.” [4/21, letter to constituent]
Rep. Jim Langevin (D-RI)- “I am hopeful that today’s announcement of a framework agreement between the P5+1 and Iran will lead to a verifiable and effective final deal regarding the Iranian nuclear program, with the ultimate goal of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. While critical details are still pending, this framework presents a promising foundation for a long-term solution.” [4/2]
Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA)- “If fully implemented, today’s framework agreement would prevent an Iranian nuclear weapon, enhance our national security and show that diplomacy work s. This is a major step forward for diplomacy, national security and global peace. This type of smart, strategic diplomacy brings us closer to a more peaceful and secure world while promoting U.S. national security.” [4/2]
Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA)- “As outlined by the framework, the final agreement would not only be a ‘good deal’ – it has the potential of being an historic one. A strong and verifiable final agreement will also avert the U.S. and other nations from engaging in yet another war in the Middle East, which I believe is an unthinkable alternative. At the same time, this framework and the final agreement would strengthen all efforts to contain nuclear weapons globally.” [4/2]
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT)- “I’ve always believed that a diplomatic agreement remains the best chance for the United States and our allies to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, and this deal moves us towards that goal. I will continue to urge my colleagues to refrain from actions that jeopardize the progress we’ve made as we work together in search of a final, comprehensive deal by the July deadline. Those who are critical of the framework they’ve negotiated have the responsibility to present a serious alternative that would help America achieve the ultimate goal: a nuclear-free Iran, without provoking another war in the Middle East.” [4/3]
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT)- “We do not have a Constitutional obligation to approve or disapprove an executive agreement with Iran.”[4/8]
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)- “We have no illusions about the record and conduct of the Iranian regime. That is why this framework to roll back Iran’s nuclear program is founded not on trust, but on vigilance and enforcement. Critically, this framework significantly restricts Iran’s enrichment capability and enables us to intensify our vigilance where it is needed most and that is inside Iran’s facilities. The aggressive inspections and restrictions outlined in the preliminary framework offers a strong, long-term plan to stop Iran from building a bomb.” [4/2]
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)- “Diplomacy has taken us to a framework agreement founded on vigilance and enforcement, and these negotiations must be allowed to proceed unencumbered.Senator Corker’s legislation undermines these international negotiations and represents an unnecessary hurdle to achieving a strong, final agreement.In the weeks ahead, we must give this diplomatic framework room to succeed so that we can judge a June 30th agreement on its merits.” [4/8]
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)- “In the weeks ahead, we must give this diplomatic framework room to succeed to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.” [4/14, letter to Senator Cardin]
Rep. David Price (D-NC)- “We must not let domestic politics stand in the way of preventing an Iranian nuclear weapon. Instead of undermining the framework agreement, Congress should work with the Administration to see through a completion of the negotiations and the effective implementation of a strong, verifiable Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.” [4/2]
Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI)- “Congress should allow the hard work of diplomacy to continue and not try to derail the next steps in the negotiation. Those who would thwart diplomacy or undermine the talks should remember that failure could come at a steep price for our troops and national security. Some of the loudest critics of diplomacy with Iran today wrongly backed a rush to war with Iraq, which ended up empowering Tehran and strengthening their hand in the region.” [4/2]
Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV)- “We must always remain vigilant about preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapon but there is no question that a diplomatic solution is vastly preferable to the alternatives. Now is the time for thoughtful consideration, not rash action that could undermine the prospects for success. We have much to learn about what was negotiated and what will take place between now and the end of June. In the coming days and weeks, we should all take a deep breath, examine the details and give this critically important process time to play out.” [4/2]
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)– “This framework is an important step forward. It is imperative that Iran not get a nuclear weapon. It also is imperative that we do everything we can to reach a diplomatic solution and avoid never-ending war in the Middle East.” [4/2]
Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL)- “The intrusive inspection regime that includes continuous surveillance of Iran’s enrichment facilities, uranium mines and mills, centrifuge production and storage facilities – the entire nuclear supply chain – makes it nearly impossible for Iran to ‘cheat’ without detection. Much of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure will be rolled back or halted altogether.” [4/2]
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA)- “While I reserve judgment on whether a final deal will materialize or would enjoy my support, enough progress has been made to warrant the additional time necessary to determine if the remaining issues can be resolved. In the interim, Congress must ensure that its actions do not preclude reaching an acceptable agreement or be seen as scuttling a peaceful path to ending Iran’s nuclear ambitions.” [4/2]
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)- “The announcement of a framework for a comprehensive agreement to limit Iran’s nuclear program is a positive development. I look forward to closely reviewing the framework and continuing my work, as a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, to ensure that Iran cannot develop nuclear weapons.” [4/2]
Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA)- “This deal has the potential to cut off all of Iran’s paths to a nuclear weapon in a verifiable way. Opponents should seek to guide the framework towards a positive outcome, not attempt to derail a final comprehensive deal. No final deal will be perfect, but the objective is to prevent Iran from achieving a nuclear weapon without going to war.” [4/2]
Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM)-As negotiators work on a final plan, I would stress that monitoring, verification, and enforcement are key components to any agreement, and Iran should know that America will act decisively if Iran violates its commitments on this grave and important issue. Finally, I believe the Congress needs to allow the administration to continue to have the space to negotiate the final agreement, and therefore should not pass legislation which would only complicate the progress towards a diplomatic solution.” [4/2]
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)- “A diplomatic solution is ‘our best option by far’ in the effort to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon… We all agree that a nuclear Iran must be prevented. In any practical world, we have to accept that terms that would be humiliating to a sovereign adversary are unlikely. However, any final deal must assure that Iran cannot develop a nuclear weapon. Until a final deal is reached, I encourage my colleagues in Congress to refrain from steps that would be counterproductive to the negotiating process.” [4/2]
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)- “Finding a negotiated solution, something that works, something that doesn’t involve trusting, something that involves verifying that Iran is not moving toward developing a nuclear weapon, that is our best promise in the region. There are some good signs at this point that there may be a negotiated solution here. What’s the alternative here? What have you got as the next best move?” [4/3]
Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY)- “I believe this is a deal worth supporting, but we must wait to ensure there is no backsliding on any parameters before a final agreement is signed. I commend President Obama and Secretary Kerry, as well as our global partners, for this breakthrough that holds the promise of a safer world and more stable Middle East.” [4/2]

Administration Officials

John Brennan, Director of the CIA- “I must tell you the individuals who say this deal provides a pathway for Iran to a bomb are being wholly disingenuous, in my view, if they know the facts, understand what’s required for a program. I certainly am pleasantly surprised that the Iranians have agreed to so much here. In terms of the inspections regime, the reduction as far as the centrifuges, the stockpile, what they’re doing with the Arak reactor — all of that I think is really quite surprising and quite good.” [4/8]
John Kerry, Secretary of State- “We believe this deal is critical. I know that some will suggest that the agreed parameters are not sufficient, but the burden will be on them to prescribe a specific and plausible alternative to a better outcome. The fact is that we have reached an important milestone in our years-long effort to ensure that Iran’s nuclear program is and remains wholly peaceful.” [4/3]
Jacob Lew, Secretary of Treasury- “Today, we and our partners in the P5+1 and the EU have reached a major milestone: a political framework for a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action regarding Iran’s nuclear program that will close off every pathway for Iran to develop a nuclear weapon and will ensure that Iran’s nuclear program will be used exclusively for peaceful purposes. This is not a framework based on trust, it is based on unmatched verification.” [4/2]
Ernest Moniz, United States Secretary of Energy- “The key parameters established today lay the groundwork for achieving the P5+1’s objective of blocking Iran’s four pathways to nuclear weapons… America’s leading nuclear experts were involved throughout these negotiations. As a result, I’m pleased to say that we are very confident in the technical underpinnings of this arrangement.” [4/2]
Barack Obama, President of the United States- “If Congress kills this deal, not based on expert analysis, and without offering any reasonable alternative, then it’s the United States that will be blamed for the failure of diplomacy. International unity will collapse, and the path to conflict will widen. The American people understand this, which is why solid majorities support a diplomatic resolution to the Iranian nuclear issue.” [4/2]
Barack Obama, President of the United States- “As President and Commander in Chief, I firmly believe that the diplomatic option—a comprehensive, long-term deal like this—is by far the best option. For the United States. For our allies. And for the world. Our work — this deal — is not yet done. Diplomacy is painstaking work. Success is not guaranteed. But today we have an historic opportunity to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons in Iran, and to do so peacefully, with the international community firmly behind us.” [4/3]

Foreign Officials

Council of Ministers, Saudi Arabia- “The council of ministers expressed hope for attaining a binding and definitive agreement that would lead to the strengthening of security and stability in the region and the world.” [4/6]
Efraim Halevy, Fmr. Director of Mossad and Head of Israeli National Security Council- “Obama was right, Iran capitulated. Netanyahu should accept the American offer of dialogue on the draft agreement reached in Lausanne, instead of signaling his intent to scupper it out of hand.” [4/6]
François Hollande, President of France- “France will be watchful, as it always is in step with its partners, to ensure that a credible, verifiable agreement be established under which the international community can be sure Iran will not be in a position to have access to nuclear arms.” [4/2]
Philip Hammond, British Foreign Secretary- “This is well beyond what many of us thought possible even 18 months ago and a good basis for what I believe could be a very good deal. But there is still more work to do.” [4/3]
Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany- “We are closer than ever to an agreement that makes it impossible for Iran to possess nuclear weapons.” [4/2]
King Salman, Saudi Arabia- “King Salman expressed his hope that reaching a final binding deal would strengthen the stability and security of the region and the world.” [4/2]
Pope Francis, Head of Roman Catholic Church- “In hope we entrust to the merciful Lord the framework recently agreed to in Lausanne, that it may be a definitive step toward a more secure and fraternal world.” [4/4]

Editorial Boards

Baltimore Sun- “What the pact, if finalized, gives the U.S. is path forward that doesn’t inevitably lead to war. And make no mistake, the cost of war with Iran would be substantial, dwarfing in scale wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. A diplomatic solution is far preferable… The U.S. must seize the opportunity it presents to reach a longer-term agreement that both sides can live with.” [4/3]
Bloomberg View- “The framework’s scope and strength are promising. Congress should refrain from passing any legislation that would impose additional sanctions and mandates on the talks, or otherwise seek to tie the president’s hands.” [4/2]
Boston Globe- “This deal is historic, and offers the best chance of normalizing relations between Iran and the West while making it much less likely that Iran can develop nuclear weapons. Still, many will no doubt see the agreement as unsatisfactory. That point of view is unrealistic. These last 18 months of negotiations have done more to slow Iran’s nuclear ambitions than anything else that’s been tried by the international community. That’s why it is vital that the diplomats hammering out the details are allowed to continue their good work.” [4/2]
Denver Post- “Hardline critics are many of the same people who also opposed the interim agreement with Iran, which went into effect more than a year ago and has resulted in Iran moving further from building a nuclear bomb, not closer. Ronald Reagan famously trumpeted a Russian proverb, “Trust, but verify,” in his negotiations in the 1980s. It’s not a bad lesson for today.” [4/2]
Detroit News- “The outline suggests a pact that will be stronger than expected.” [4/3]
Haaretz- “In-depth examination of the details shows that the deal includes many positive aspects that preserve Israeli security interests and answer some of Jerusalem’s concerns… Israel will have a hard time fighting this agreement, or portraying it as bad.” [4/3]
Los Angeles Times- “Congress should refrain from aggressive actions that could undermine the delicate process. The alternative to a diplomatic agreement is that ‘we can bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities, thereby starting another war in the Middle East and setting back Iran’s program by a few years.’” [4/2]
MetroWest Daily News- “Critics of the deal must remember that failure to reach an agreement has its cost too: Without a deal, the sanctions – especially those imposed by Russia and Europe, which hurt Iran more than the U.S. sanctions – might well fall apart. The reductions in enrichment capacity Iran made at the beginning of the talks could be reversed. Killing this deal might well leave Iran closer to getting nuclear weapons than completing it.” [4/3]
The Nation- “If the United States were to step back from the framework agreement and impose tougher sanctions, the Iranians would most likely eschew further negotiations and repudiate their 2013 pledge to restrain enrichment operations (the basis for the current talks)… Indeed, if the accord is scuttled as a result of congressional action, [the P5+1] are likely to resume trade with Iran despite its continuing nuclear efforts. As Iran moved closer to a bomb, therefore, the only alternative would be war.” [4/14]
National Interest- “In essence, the deal buys time – time that should be used to enmesh Iran’s nuclear activities in a web of cooperation, giving the world deeper insight into its nuclear activities and plans and ensuring that any move toward the bomb would be quickly detected.” [4/5]
New Jersey Star-Ledger- “If the described proposal holds, Iran’s ability to make nuclear weapons will be neutered for a decade… This is the best chance the world has to keep the region’s dominant state under tight control. A nuclear Iran was not an option, and the Obama Administration has succeeded in outlining a comprehensive framework to defang the problem.” [4/3]
New York Newsday- “The deal is crafted to block all pathways to a bomb. Iran would not be allowed to enrich uranium to weapons grade and would have to abandon its push toward plutonium production. The watchwords here should be distrust and verify. Iran would be required to give International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors daily access to its nuclear facilities.” [4/2]
New York Times- “The preliminary agreement between Iran and the major powers is a significant achievement that makes it more likely Iran will never be a nuclear threat. Yet in today’s poisonous political climate, Mr. Obama’s critics have gone to extraordinary lengths to undercut him and any deal. Their belligerent behavior is completely out of step with the American public.” [4/2]
New York Times- “Getting to a final deal won’t be easy. Mr. Obama must continue to be tough and determined in the coming months of negotiations. Israel’s demands, however, must not become an excuse to scuttle what seems to be a very serious and potentially groundbreaking deal.” [4/8]
New York Times- “Congress has formally muscled its way into President Obama’s negotiations with Iran, creating new and potentially dangerous uncertainties for an agreement that offers the best chance of restraining that country’s nuclear program. With a unanimous vote on Tuesday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a bill that would require Congress to review, and then vote on, the final text of a nuclear deal. It would also prohibit Mr. Obama from waiving economic sanctions on Iran — the crucial element of any agreement under which Iran rolls back its nuclear program.” [4/15]
Philadelphia Inquirer- “It will take additional weeks to nail down the complicated details of implementation. Giving up the ideal solution has been painful for parties on both sides. But it is now time for taking a sober look at what can be gained from a deal and what can be lost without one.” [4/5]
The Republican- “Let the negotiators do their work. Let them make their sales pitch. Congress will have a role to play, but it mustn’t be to step forward now, with much that still needs to be done, to try to scuttle the agreement. When judging the pact that eventually emerges, it will be important to remember that the deal needn’t be perfect. What it’s got to be is better than any of the available alternatives.” [4/3]
Tampa Bay Times- “The framework for an agreement would achieve the ultimate goal on both sides: keeping Iran from producing weapons-grade fuel in exchange for easing some of the international sanctions that have crippled the Iranian economy.” [4/2]
Sacramento Bee- “Moving forward on the tentative framework announced Thursday is far more promising than the alternatives – giving up on diplomacy and increasing sanctions, or launching a military strike that could lead to a wider war in the Middle East.” [4/2]
Slate- “The Iranian nuclear deal… is a significant breakthrough. Uncertainties remain, inherently so, as it’s merely a ‘political framework.’ But this framework turns out to be far more detailed, quantitative, and restrictive than anyone had expected.” [4/2]
USA Today- “Before setting a course for war, it’s usually best to at peace a chance, particularly since all other options will remain open if the agreement fails.” [4/2]
Vox- “The terms are far better than expected. There are a number of details still to be worked out. This is not over. But if this framework does indeed become a full nuclear deal in July, it would be a huge success and a great deal… Iran would simply not have much of its nuclear program left.” [4/2]