The scope of Trump’s failed Iran policy comes into sharper focus

The scope of Trump’s failed Iran policy comes into sharper focus

Steve Benen writes:

About a year ago, Biden administration officials held a closed-door briefing with senators on Iran’s nuclear program. Politico reported soon after that members exited the briefing feeling rattled, with one senator describing the information as “sobering and shocking.”

While the discussion was held behind closed doors, the Politico report added that officials warned lawmakers that Iran “could produce enough material for a nuclear bomb in as little as two months.”

As Reuters reported yesterday, federal lawmakers received an even more unsettling timeline yesterday.

Iran could make enough fissile for one nuclear bomb in “about 12 days,” a top U.S. Defense Department official said on Tuesday, down from the estimated one year it would have taken while the 2015 Iran nuclear deal was in effect. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl made the comment to a House of Representatives hearing when pressed by a Republican lawmaker why the Biden administration had sought to revive the deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

As part of his testimony to the House Armed Services Committee, Kahl explained that Iran’s nuclear progress since Donald Trump abandoned the international nuclear agreement has been “remarkable.” The Pentagon official added, “Back in 2018, when the previous administration decided to leave the JCPOA it would have taken Iran about 12 months to produce one bomb’s worth of fissile material. Now it would take about 12 days.” [Continue reading…]

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