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CongressIranMonday, May 4, 2015

Corker Bill Goes Forward Despite Deal-Killing Efforts

Corker Bill Goes Forward Despite Deal-Killing Efforts May 4, 2015 The Senate is expected to move toward voting on legislation put forward by Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) that would allow Congress a greater role in approving the international agreement being negotiated by the United States and its P5+1 partners with Iran. Previous iterations of the contentious bill contained provisions that would have placed impossible expectations on the deal, including on issues outside the scope of the negotiations, but a compromise brokered by Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) stripped those provisions. The compromise has allowed bipartisan support for the bill to coalesce and the Obama Administration says it will not veto it if it passes in its current form. That hasn’t stopped dead-ender conservatives including Sen. Tom… Read More ›

IranSaudi ArabiaYemenWednesday, April 22, 2015

Saudi Arabia, Iran, the United States, and the Way out of Yemen

Saudi Arabia, Iran, the United States, and the Way out of Yemen April 22, 2015 Saudi Arabia announced yesterday that it was transitioning from a military to a political emphasis in its intervention in Yemen, ending Operation Decisive Storm and beginning a new phase, Operation Restoring Hope. Though airstrikes continued today, Saudi and Houthi officials said they were nearing an arrangement to revive the country’s collapsed political dialogue. The promise of renewed talks has weakened the Houthis’ support, as their most powerful allies have come out in favor of negotiations. This includes Iran, which has provided limited support to the Houthis, but which reports indicate had little influence over the organization. The United States has pressured Saudi Arabia to wind down its air campaign, and… Read More ›

IranSaudi ArabiaYemenWednesday, April 15, 2015

J. Dana Stuster Appears on Al Jazeera Discussing Yemen

Can an arms embargo deter the Houthis? April 15, 2015 | Al Jazeera This interview is in Arabic.        The United Nations Security Council has passed a resolution banning arms sales to Houthis, who condemned the move. They described it as a move that supports “aggression”. At the same time, Iran said it will present a peace plan for Yemen. It involves a ceasefire, humanitarian assistance, a dialogue between Yemeni factions and a broad-based government. But can the UN resolution change things on the ground? And what is behind Tehran’s plan? Presenter Shiulie Ghosh Guests: Khaled Batarfi – senior columnist at the Saudi Gazette Mohammad Marandi – professor at the University of Tehran Dana Stuster – policy analyst at the National Security Network.… Read More ›

diplomacyIranMarco RubioTuesday, April 14, 2015

Rubio’s Platform Is All Criticism, No Alternatives

Rubio’s Platform is All Criticism, No Alternatives April 14, 2015 Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) punted on foreign policy and national security issues in his speech  announcing his candidacy for president,  limiting his discussion of these issues to a single paragraph. Still, his positions are as clear as they are familiar: Sen. Rubio espouses the same Cold War mentality that made Sen. John McCain such a troubling candidate for commander-in-chief in 2008. He is quick to criticize what he sees as American weakness, from the nuclear negotiations with Iran to U.S. policies toward Russia and China, but he fails to present credible alternatives. As he builds his platform in the months to come, he will need to make a compelling case for not just what’s wrong… Read More ›

IranP5+1 TalksMonday, April 6, 2015

Five Myths About the Iran Framework Deal

Five Myths about the Iran Framework Deal April 6, 2015 The framework for a comprehensive agreement reached by P5+1 negotiators at Lausanne, Switzerland, last week has established the overarching terms of a sustainable, peaceful solution to the Iranian nuclear issue. The terms are more favorable than many expected, and even skeptics of diplomacy – from experts like United Against Nuclear Iran’s Gary Samore to pundits like Bill O’Reilly – say it’s a credible deal worth pursuing. However, some people still aren’t convinced and have brought out many of the same arguments against the deal that were being made before there was a deal to criticize. Here are five of the top reasons critics say the United States should reject the deal, and why they’re wrong.… Read More ›

IranP5+1 Talkssanctionssandy bergerMonday, April 6, 2015

Sandy Berger: the Fantasy of a Better Iran Deal

Writing in Politico Magazine, NSN Advisory Board Chair Sandy Berger had the following caution for those who think more sanctions will lead to a better deal: [I]t is highly unlikely that even our allies in Europe would join us in further sanctions against Iran in the wake of a nuclear agreement they believe is sensible and positive. That is even truer for other countries—like India, Japan, South Korea and China—that were pulled into the existing sanctions regime quite unwillingly. The support of these countries for the oil sanctions in particular has been critical to the sanctions’ effectiveness. They will not willingly sign up for more… Indeed, the proponents of tougher sanctions to get a “better” deal have misunderstood the nature of the Iranian sanctions. The… Read More ›

IranP5+1 TalksFriday, April 3, 2015

5 Key Takeaways from the Iran Deal

5 Key Takeaways from the Iran Deal April 3, 2015 The framework for a nuclear agreement with Iran announced yesterday in Lausanne, Switzerland, lays the foundations of a strong, sustainable solution to Iran’s nuclear program. Former National Security Advisor Sandy Berger joined other members of NSN’s Board of Directors and Advisory Board in a statement saying, “the Obama Administration and international partners have taken a responsible approach to negotiations…” They added, “A comprehensive final agreement would demonstrate that the United States can secure major security interests without the use of force, even if it must deal with one of its long-standing adversaries. It is our hope that a final comprehensive agreement will demonstrate that the United States can pursue its interests in the Middle East… Read More ›

IranP5+1 TalksFriday, April 3, 2015

Progress Report: Negotiations Toward a Final Deal with Iran

Progress Report: Negotiations Toward a Final Deal with Iran National Security Network and National Iranian American Council April 2, 2015 NSN cohosted a House staffer briefing with NIAC entitled “Progress Report: Negotiations Toward a Final Deal with Iran” which featured presentations by Jamal Abdi (NIAC), Kelsey Davenport (ACA), and Liz Rosenberg (CNAS) and was moderated by John Bradshaw (NSN).  Jamal discussed the importance of reaching a final agreement with the P5+1 and Iran, noted how far the U.S. and Iran have come in redeveloping diplomatic channels, and the proper role for Congress in the deal’s implementation. Kelsey explained the key nuclear metrics that would judge a final deal as good and laid out the key sticking points in the negotiations on nuclear outputs. Liz explained the… Read More ›

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