An Iranian woman walks past a mural on the wall of the former US embassy in the Iranian capital Tehran ATTA KENARE/AFP/Getty Images

A New Era of Nuclear Uncertainty

After weeks of positive diplomatic developments on the Korean Peninsula, Donald Trump has followed through on his longstanding vow to withdraw the United States from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. The decision threatens to deepen the chaos in the Middle East and undermine nuclear-nonproliferation efforts worldwide.

AACHEN – With the decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear agreement – formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – US President Donald Trump’s administration has demonstrated, yet again, that it is determined to destroy major global structures and agreements. The decision will be a massive blow to the 2015 deal, putting the entire world at risk.

The JCPOA – the result of years of difficult negotiations – was agreed by seven countries and the European Union, and unanimously endorsed by the United Nations Security Council. Yet Trump has decided unilaterally to impose “the highest level of economic sanction” on Iran and on “any nation that helps Iran in its quest for nuclear weapons.”

Now, companies and banks from countries that have lived up to their commitments under the JCPOA stand to suffer considerably, as a result of their legitimate business ties with Iran. In other words, the country that is breaking its promises has decided to punish those that have kept theirs.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To read this article from our archive, please log in or register now. After entering your email, you'll have access to two free articles from our archive every month. For unlimited access to Project Syndicate, subscribe now.


By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in;

Handpicked to read next

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.