Macron Blindsided European Allies With Proposal For New "Four-Part" Iran Deal

When French President Emmanuel Macron explained his vision for a "four-part" new accord that would introduce further restrictions on Iran's ballistic missile program while preserving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (better known as the Iran deal), his revelation took his European allies completely by surprise.

Macron's vision, which he outlined during a White House press conference on Tuesday, pushed the limits of international diplomacy by essentially doing an end-run around his regional allies, according to two sources who spoke with Bloomberg.

That case ran headlong into Trump’s competing instincts on foreign policy and caught fellow European powers off guard. Coordination within the European Union took place before Macron left for Washington, but once there the French president introduced elements that hadn’t been discussed in advance, according to two EU officials. The French will need to brief the rest of the EU on those issues, said the officials, who asked not to be named discussing strategy.

However, if Macron can convince Trump to stay in the deal - or at least delay a decision past a May 12 deadline imposed by the US - the other signatories may have no choice but to fall in line. But there are still problems with Macron's pitch - including the fact that it indulges Trump's desire to be "half-pregnant", that is, to preserve the JCPOA while imposing further restrictions that might chafe the Iranians.

Trump

The deal outlined by Macron would involve adopting further restrictions on the Iranian nuclear program after 2025, when the JCPOA restrictions are set to expire. It would also call for a halt to Iran's ballistic missile program while constraining its regional influence. But as President Trump said during Tuesday's press conference (where he blasted the Iran deal as "insane" and "ridiculous", "nobody knows" what the US is planning on May 12 - well, nobody aside from Macron.

A lack of European coordination may be a price worth paying if the U.S. president can be persuaded to stick to the Iran accord. Trump prizes his reputation as a deal maker, and is eager to score major foreign policy wins, yet he remains deeply skeptical of preserving the 2015 agreement with Tehran.

"It sounded to me like he wants to be half-pregnant - that he wants to withdraw from the deal but sustain the deal and add something on top of the deal so that it constrains the Iranians more," Jon Alterman, a senior vice president at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said of Trump’s opposition. "The challenge with all of this is the president’s objection to the deal is visceral, not intellectual."

...

Macron’s hope is to stave off an American withdrawal next month from the six-party agreement to freeze Iran’s nuclear weapons program. The French leader sought to tempt his American counterpart with the promise of future diplomacy that would not only repair flaws Trump perceives in the original agreement, negotiated by the Obama administration, but resolve a range of security headaches across the Middle East.

...

At a news conference, Macron offered a portrait of a four-part “new accord” with Iran. The French president would combine the existing nuclear agreement with curbs on Iran’s nuclear program after 2025, a halt to its ballistic missile development and constraints on its regional influence.

Still, the fact that Macron has convinced Trump to even consider some of this options for preserving the deal is being interpreted as a cause for optimism.

There are still some grounds for optimistic that Macron can thread that needle, convincing Trump to preserve the existing Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, as American and European negotiators work on a series of side deals. Indications that the U.S. and France at least made advances on some of the issues Trump has raised were reasons for optimism, James Jeffrey, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, said in an interview.

"Trump’s repeated use of the word 'flexibility' or 'flexible' is the code word here," Jeffrey said. "But until he sees a final agreement from the three European countries, he’s clearly not going to commit."

Indeed, U.S. and European officials said they’ve made more progress than expected in their quiet discussions about coming up with proposals that would meet Trump’s demands to contain Iran. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, with whom Macron coordinated on policy last week, is due to meet with Trump in Washington on Friday.

But while analysts now half-expect the Trump administration to find some excuse to keep negotiations going past May 12, the ascendance of John Bolton, Mike Pompeo and other neoconservative Iran hawks in the Trump administration has raised the possibility that they could sabotage a new deal, should a formal agreement take shape. However, the looming talks with North Korea could also convince Trump to at least delay his decision to withdraw from the deal as he tries to avoid legitimizing the rhetoric of Iranian leaders, who've warned that pulling out of the Iran accord would prove to the international community (and the North in particular) that the US can't be trusted.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has repeatedly dared the US to prove to the world that it is ready to honor its commitments. Rouhani told a state-run news network that the US should "first go and respect what you have signed". He also questioned why the US is negotiating for another deal with its European allies, saying Iran had not signed off on these new negotiations.

"You said you’re making decisions with a European leader over a seven-party deal. Who allowed you to?" Rouhani said.

Which begs the question: Even if Macron can somehow secure a commitment from the US to preserve the Iran deal while negotiations continue on a separate overlay agreement, will the negotiators be able to convince Iran to remain at the table?

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Comments

Harry Lightning eforce Wed, 04/25/2018 - 08:49 Permalink

Nonsense. Sounds like the way the American media characterized Iraq before the original Gulf War in '91 : "the fourth largest army in the world". 

Iran is nothing without the Russians backing them, the same way North Korea is a pimple on an elephant's ass without the Chinese support. 

Which means the US cannot expect any progress with the towelheads in Tehran without improving relations with Moscow, the same way they could not get anywhere in North Korea without the Chinese putting the pressure on the Fat Bastard in Pyong Yang.

Which is even more reason why Trump should be following his instincts and engage the Russians, Robert Mueller be damned. Relations need to improve with Russia for a number of vital reasons, Iran being near the top of that list. 

In reply to by eforce

keep the basta… Harry Lightning Wed, 04/25/2018 - 09:03 Permalink

you dont get this. The ;fat bastard' has safe guarded his country.

China guarenteed that if NK was attacked first China would retaliate. So NK stopped being afraid. 

That means if USA attacks NK  it cops it from china.

Means the NK army does not have to leave harvesting  when the uSA puts on drills  near NK every harvest. North and south koreas have wanted to re0unite but usa didnt want it. strategically they want THAAD weapons in SK.

Tehran is harmless; unless someone wanted its land, oil, pipeline  and such. Or wanted to destroy its neighbour  with isis mercenaries so it was destroyed next. It has never attacked Israel, nor ever invaded any country.

 

In reply to by Harry Lightning

Fireman Mr Poopra Wed, 04/25/2018 - 11:32 Permalink

USSA, the whore that spawned the anglozionazi empire of filth will NEVER attack Iran with impunity, so that means NO attack whatsoever even when the khazrian beast in apartheid, occupied palestine commands it too. It will not happen anymore than North Korea will giveup its own big beautiful shiny and smart nukes. USSA is being played like the mutt it is. As for the pedo victim frog lil Manny macron imagining that he has something to say about Iran's military future...why that is plain embarrassing that lil Manny could even imagine such.

In reply to by Mr Poopra

keep the basta… Veritas X- Wed, 04/25/2018 - 09:15 Permalink

yes poor Melania was very happy and lovely  yesterday and at the tree planting. Next very stiff and  appalled. But macrons wife was happy.  something very bad happened from her  point of view. Weird stuff.

Seeing  the seductive behaviour of macron who does according to  french  media have a boyfriend was horrifying and unthinkable.

I was a bit sorry for Trump seemingly  getting sucked in and looking foolish with the cavorting ugly sex seductress Macron hanging off him. Macron is so ugly.

In reply to by Veritas X-

keep the basta… Juggernaut x2 Wed, 04/25/2018 - 10:02 Permalink

think thats unlikely. Trump would retaliate so strongly. not worth it.

Looking at the photos of  Melania in the white hat she looks very thin, and rigid, like in full trauma. 

Her eyes are semi closed in both photos like she is just managing to hold herself upright. looks wretched.

She well knows the calm  face and poise but this is quite different. 

In reply to by Juggernaut x2

Carl Spackler gatorengineer Wed, 04/25/2018 - 10:05 Permalink

And that is a good thing.  If the EU cabalists do not know what the USA is thinking, then all the better...we control the game.

Let’s go back to a key observation made above, which is critical to understanding... “Bloomberg is reporting that...”

There’s the qualifier that this story is a crock of b.s., but it does “out” what the Khazarian cabal wants to happen... which is the semi-annual extortion payments from the USA, which they launder through Iran.

By the way, anyone notice Macron’s cabal symbols (e.g., when Melania had the white hat on) in a couple of the photos made public from the State visit?  THESE CABALISTS ARE STUPID.

In reply to by gatorengineer

DingleBarryObummer Wed, 04/25/2018 - 08:30 Permalink

Israel was created by the Rothschild family.  Macron worked for rothschild.  Trump was bailed out by wilbur ross (who was working for rothschild) in the 90's.  Israel is threatened by Iran (and vica versa).  Starting to connect the dots here?

Follow the... bouncing... ball...

wwwww Wed, 04/25/2018 - 08:30 Permalink

https://www.globalresearch.ca/washington-using-currency-war-to-destabil…

From the article:

The neoconservative hawks around the US President, notably new National Security head John Bolton and designated Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, are on record that Iran is in Washington’s sights for regime change or at a minimum, economic sanctions and chaos. The rhetoric is not empty. The ground is being laid by US threats to not renew the Iran nuclear agreement in May, a move opposed by the other signatories and a move that would plunge Iran into a deep economic crisis at a time it can ill afford.

In recent weeks its currency has been dropping like a stone, provoking panic buying of dollars on the black markets and aggravating a growing domestic crisis. While Trump threatens in May not to renew the Iran nuclear agreement, opening new official sanctions, evidence suggests there is a dirty game underway from the side of key Washington allies Saudi Arabia and UAE to weaken the Rial.

In December 2017 there was a wave of protests across the country focused on the weak economy and high unemployment. Then, after initially charging foreign meddling (which there was to be sure), arresting thousands, the government was forced to recognize the economic grievances were legitimate and should be addressed. They were the largest protests since the US-incited attempt at a Green Revolution in 2009. With overall inflation at 14% in 2017 despite lifting of Western sanctions, and youth unemployment at 25%, the government of moderate Hassan Rouhani pledged to address the economic situation.

Currency war begins

Those protests gradually died down. Now what is taking place, however, is far more dangerous to the stability of Iran. It’s a not-so-subtle form of financial warfare from Washington. At this stage it takes the form of currency war, inducing panic among Iranians that leads them to dump Rials in a desperate bid to get dollars as the Rial sinks to its lowest since the 1979 Khomeini Revolution.

The trigger for the latest plunge in the Rial was the announcement by US President Trump that he is “inclined” to not certify Iranian adherence to the nuclear treaty on May 12 when the next quarterly decision is due. When Trump last signed off on the nuclear treaty in January he threatened to not approve unless radical improvements were agreed with the Europeans and Iran that would include eliminating Iran’s ballistic missile program and its support of Hezbollah, a significant force in the Syrian war....

gatorengineer RawPawg Wed, 04/25/2018 - 08:45 Permalink

Yes you are.  Treaties have to be voted on and approved by CONgress.  This one wasnt.  Plain and simple.  It was the Brown Clown acting as dictator once again.

If the Iranians wanted a Nuke Lil Kim would sell them one.  If muzzies werent hell bent on world domination I wouldnt have a problem with them having one.  But since the Mantra is convert or die, Im not big on them having the bomb.

In reply to by RawPawg