Skip to main content

fischer158_MANDELNGANAFPGettyImages_trumpboltonovaloffice Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

Trump’s Lose-Lose Iran Strategy

As the Trump administration spins its wheels over Iran, the world is reminded of why the Obama administration and the Europeans went to such lengths to develop a new approach to dealing with the country. By resuscitating a failed strategy, Trump and his advisers are risking yet another catastrophic war in the Middle East.

BERLIN – One can only guess what US President Donald Trump hopes to achieve in Iran. Does he have designs on a “better” nuclear treaty than the 2015 deal from which he withdrew the United States? Are he and his advisers assuming that if they pile up enough demands, the regime will be forced to submit, or even abdicate? Or are they setting the stage for an attempt at regime change through military force?

In all likelihood, they themselves have no idea. That may be just as well, because none of the above is going to happen.

To be sure, Trump’s withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA, as the 2015 nuclear deal is officially known) fulfilled one of his key campaign promises. The problem is that neither he nor his advisers seem to have considered what would come next.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.

Subscribe

Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.

https://prosyn.org/0OvN8qw;
  1. solana109_robert wallisCorbis via Getty Images_manhittingberlinwall Robert Wallis/Corbis via Getty Images

    The Partial Triumph of 1989

    Javier Solana

    The fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 marked the end not of a historical chapter, but of a paragraph. Although capitalism currently has no rival, it has proven its compatibility with illiberal forces.

    0
  2. sachs315_Pablo Rojas MadariagaNurPhoto via Getty Images_chileprotestmanbulletface Pablo Rojas Madariaga/NurPhoto via Getty Images

    Why Rich Cities Rebel

    Jeffrey D. Sachs

    Having lost touch with public sentiment, officials in Paris, Hong Kong, and Santiago failed to anticipate that a seemingly modest policy action (a fuel-tax increase, an extradition bill, and higher metro prices, respectively) would trigger a massive social explosion.

    4

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated Cookie policy, Privacy policy and Terms & Conditions