Struan Stevenson, president of the European Iraqi Freedom Association and member of European Parliament from 1999 to 2014, wrote an article marking the first anniversary of nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5 + 1 nations.
Stevenson said that the P5 + 1 nations “missed a unique opportunity to topple the regime of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and restore peace and stability to the region”.
He highlighted that “the ink had barely dried on the agreement” when the deal was called Obama’s big foreign policy breakthrough. Yet, it was a “deeply flawed” agreement. “Obama's spin-doctors mounted an impressive and sophisticated campaign to persuade the world that his administration had struck a groundbreaking pact with the so-called 'moderate' Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.”
Stevenson states that Rouhani is far from moderate. During his time in office, over 2,500 people have been executed. More people have been executed per capita in Iran than in any other country. Rouhani’s justification is that the death penalty is God's judgment on offenders.
The killing in Iran serves to create fear in the country. The population is increasingly unhappy and is fighting back in the form of protests. This is causing the regime to panic, Stevenson said, leading to even more crackdowns.
Obama declared he had done a good deal with the “trustworthy and moderate” Iranian president. However, “the opposite is true (…) It was a terrible deal, which far from curtailing Iran's expansionist agenda has significantly strengthened its position in the Middle East”.
It was a bad deal because Iran’s nuclear efforts have only been delayed, not stopped. Also, the restrictions on uranium enrichment, for example, end in just over a decade.
Stevenson highlights the one-sided nature of the deal which involves the releasing of more than $150 billion in frozen assets. He said that the “regime’s biggest export is terror”. He said: “a regime which funds Hezbollah in Lebanon, President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, the Houthi rebels in Yemen and the brutal Shiite militias in Iraq.”
The Iranian people are the ones who are ultimately paying the price. He highlights that welfare handouts have been savagely cut and food prices are on the rise. This is because Obama desperately tried to secure a legacy agreement. Stevenson said he “closed his eyes to all the danger signs”. It would have been the perfect opportunity to “topple a rogue regime and restore peace and stability to the region”. He called this a missed opportunity and said that it was more important to America and Europe to do business with the Iranian regime. “Already Boeing has signed a $25 billion deal to supply Iran with 100 aircraft. Money clearly trumps human rights.”
“Every major company trading with Iran risks having its money funneled to the regional wars and could face fines and punishments by the U.S. treasury,” he added. “One year on from the signing of the nuclear deal there is no cause for celebration. Although the deal may have postponed Iran's ability to produce a nuclear bomb, the world is not a safer place.”