Netanyahu v Hammond
This is about as good an exchange as you are going to find on the Iran nuclear deal:
From my point of view, it is telling that Netanyahu says absolutely nothing about how multilateral sanctions, international inspections and technological constraints on Iran’s nuclear program would be maintained in the absence of a deal. He simply repeats that he wants maintenance of sanctions and a better deal, one that somehow ends burning of Israeli flags in Tehran as well as other odious Iranian behavior. I’d like a pony too.
Note also: Netanyahu suggests North Korea developed its nuclear weapons while under IAEA monitoring. That is not really true. Pyongyang ejected the inspectors and withdrew from the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in 2003. It first tested a nuclear weapon in 2006. Of course Iran could also withdraw from the NPT, but the agreement reached this week includes the following sentence:
Iran reaffirms that under no circumstances will Iran ever seek, develop or acquire any nuclear weapons.
You can believe it or not, but it certainly goes beyond previous commitments Iran has made in writing.
I’d score this bout a win for Hammond, but admittedly that is the direction in which I lean. There simply is no good alternative to an agreement. Whether this one is the best we could get or not, it is now the only one available. Netanyahu and other opponents will soon be screeching about the need to implement it to the letter and complaining about every conceivable Iranian deviation.