Iran cannot obtain a nuclear weapon. This imperative, long a foundation of American policy in the Middle East, has been my guidepost as I have reviewed the ongoing nuclear negotiations – and now the nuclear agreement – with Iran. Because as dangerous as Iran is today, it becomes twice as threatening to the security of the United States, Israel, and the world if its regional provocations were to occur under the cover of a nuclear weapons arsenal.
To be clear, Iran’s unacceptable conduct does not end with the pursuit of nuclear weapons. Iran funds and sponsors terrorists throughout the world. It denies the existence of Israel and openly roots for the obliteration of the Jewish state. Its human rights record is an abomination. But these negotiations, stretching for over a year, have been limited in scope to the future of Iran’s nuclear program. No matter the distastefulness of Iran’s other deleterious activity in the region, the sole purpose of these talks has been to divorce Iran from a nuclear weapon so that the international community can focus our attention on addressing Iran’s other malevolent behavior.