The Daily Talking Points

News and views on U.S.-Iran relations for January 21:

  • Foreign Policy: Josh Rogin, on his Foreign Policy blog The Cable, reports that administration officials are pushing back against a common perception in Congress that China isn’t doing enough to support Iran sanctions. In an update to his post, a senior GOP Senate aide responded to the administration official’s comment, telling Rogin, “These senior Administration officials continue to obfuscate and misdirect. Chinese entities are clearly in violation of the Iran, North Korea, and Syria Nonproliferation Act (INKSNA) and the Comprehensive Iran Sanction, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 (CISADA).” The aide continued with a thinly veiled threat: “If the administration doesn’t act soon, it faces the loss of its waiver authority and investigatory discretion on these matters.”
  • The Jerusalem Post: The Jerusalem Post’s editorial board writes that revelations from outgoing Mossad chief Meir Dagan, that Iran is unlikely to have the capability to produce a nuclear weapon until 2015, will make reducing tensions with Iran and redoubling engagement efforts more appealing. “But while there might be some truth to some these claims, it would be incredibly naïve to expect a nebulous engagement policy to convince Iran to abandon a nuclear program that has earned it popularity domestically and heightened diplomatic influence internationally,” writes the Post. The op-ed concludes, “Iran is bent on obtaining the bomb. That the danger may have been delayed by a year or two does not make it any less of an existential threat.”

Eli Clifton

Eli Clifton reports on money in politics and US foreign policy. He is a co-founder of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. Eli previously reported for the American Independent News Network, ThinkProgress, and Inter Press Service.