By Eliezer Sherman
Attempts by Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu to secure a more stringent nuclear deal with Iran are “not gonna happen,” Secretary of State John Kerry said in an interview published this week.
“The whole mythology I’ve heard, from [Israeli Prime Minister] Netanyahu to Republican members of the House and Senate – ‘Oh, just squeeze them to death, raise the sanctions’ – not gonna happen,” Kerry told the Washington Post.
He said the deal in its current form would scale back the amount of time it would take Iran to produce enough fissile material to make a nuclear bomb from three months to one year, and it would require daily inspections of Iran’s enrichment facilities for the next “25 years.”
The secretary of state, who along with negotiators from the UK, Russia, China, France, Germany and of course Iran has been trying to hammer out a deal by June 30, lamented the possibility that Congress could kill an agreement even if all the countries involved accepted it.
“Look, if Russia, China, Germany, France, and Britain, all of whom have nuclear programs, sign off on this, and all their experts say it’s a good deal, and Congress for political reasons wants to go kill it, they’re walking away,” he said.
He said this will spell the end of the sanctions regime because none of these countries would back it if they felt a good deal had gone to waste.
Netanyahu meanwhile on Wednesday continued to rally against the current framework, calling it a “historic mistake” and comparing it to the framework the US signed with North Korea in 1994, about 12 years before the Asian country conducted its first test of a nuclear bomb.
Speaking alongside the vice prime minister of South Korea, Netanyahu said: “It was said then that supervision would prevent enrichment, it was said then that the [agreement] would temper North Korea’s belligerent leadership, it was said then that the [agreement] would allow North Korea to integrate into the family of nations.”
He said the framework announced following negotiations with Iran in Lausanne, Switzerland, “repeats these mistakes.”