Obama administration has taken all other options off the table making war the likely consequence of the nuclear deal
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Nor are economic sanctions the only leverage the Administration has been ignoring. President Obama declared early in his first term that he would use “all elements of American power” to prevent a nuclear Iran, and he has asserted repeatedly that “all options are on the table.”8 Now the Administration and its supporters claim the alternative is war.
In his second term, the Administration weakened virtually all elements of American power and took off almost all options off the table. It threatened to veto new sanctions, even though sanctions helped bring Iran to the table. It dismissed the military option, even though it was fear of U.S. military action that led Iran in 2003-4 to suspend crucial parts of its nuclear program. It distanced us from our regional allies, even though that has emboldened Tehran. And it has effectively aligned the United States strategically with the Islamic Republic, instead of supporting the internal opposition and confronting the regime and its terrorist proxies in the region. The Administration left itself only diplomacy, which without any credible levers has simply become pleading. And that in turn has only encouraged Iranian intransigence. This “empty holster,” as Tom Friedman put it last week in the New York Times, 9 has made war not the alternative but possibly the consequence of this deal.