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One of the big debates in Washington for the past several months have been the on-going negotiations with Iran. The neo-cons in the Republican Party oppose any deal and have managed to get the Administration to concede that any agreement with Iran will be submitted to Congress. The problem with this discussion on the news and in D.C. is the framing of this issue as a dispute between Iran on one side and the United States and Israel on the other side. This framing is completely false. While the rest of the world is willing to let the United States take the lead in negotiations, the negotiations are a global issue and that fact is key to understanding what options are on the table.
There are two basic facts underlying this dispute. First, the basic issue is a question of international law — the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and related documents. Either Iran is sufficiently complying with those terms or it isn’t. The second issue is that most of the major powers have imposed some degree of sanctions on Iran. Keeping pressure on Iran requires that everybody stays on board.