In a surprising turn of events, U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and fellow Republicans, including Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), are urging the State Department to address concerns about Iran's continued violations of international nuclear restrictions. However, their demands come with an unusual twist – a pointed acknowledgment that the U.S. itself has strayed from its promises and deals with Iran.
The senators, including Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Pete Ricketts (R-Neb.), and others, expressed disappointment in the State Department's handling of Iran's non-compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). This agreement, signed in 2015 by the U.S., Iran, and other nations, aimed to curtail Iran's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was tasked with monitoring Tehran's adherence to these restrictions.
Despite the diplomatic accord, Senator Moran highlighted Iran's persistent non-compliance and advancements in its nuclear programs. The senators, in a letter addressed to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, expressed their concern that the Biden Administration has not taken more decisive action against Iran, particularly during recent talks in Vienna.
In a surprising and candid admission, the senators criticized the U.S. for its reported efforts to oppose a censure of Iran during a September board meeting. They emphasized that the U.S. must not endorse Iran's activities by maintaining a "business-as-usual" approach to the situation. The letter underscored the senators' dismay at the Biden Administration's failure to push for concrete actions against Iran.
Among the questions raised in the letter is the inquiry into why Iran was not censured during the September board meeting and sought clarification on Iran's current compliance with the treaty. The senators' unusual stance highlights growing concerns within the Republican ranks about the trajectory of U.S. foreign policy and its perceived deviation from the commitments made in international agreements with Iran.