TEHRAN (Basirat)- A conflict is usually created when one of the players feels that it has not achieved desired results in the process of bilateral diplomatic cooperation.
A conflict is usually created when one of the players feels that it has not achieved desired results in the process of bilateral diplomatic cooperation. By Dr. Ibrahim MotaghiWhile the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was signed one year ago, there is still no general consensus about the landmark deal in Iran and the US.
The Republican National Convention on July 19, 2016, and Donald Trump’s acceptance of the party’s nomination for the upcoming US presidential election in November stressed this point that the next US president should feel no obligation to honor the deal. Indication of such an approach means "possible spread of crisis” at a time that Iran has lost a significant portion of its "resources and deterrent power” in the process of striking the agreement.
Those involved in Iran’s nuclear diplomacy have emphasized that the JCPOA would lead the Islamic Republic into a non- securitization situation in international system.
Coordinators of Iran’s nuclear diplomacy presume that the JCPOA has led Iran out of war. This approach means: "Compromise to avoid war”.
History, like terms of the 1938 Munich agreement, shows that "fear of battle” will set the stage for new conflicts. That is why realists say: "If you want peace, prepare for war".
1. Iran’s Capacities in Pre-nuclear-diplomacy Era
The process of nuclear diplomacy began under circumstances that Iran’s technical and instrumental capabilities for enriching uranium at various levels had significantly upgraded. This boost could be regarded as an important step to prepare the ground for increasing the country’s might. If a country enjoys technical and tactical power and is also ready for compromise, then it will come down in favor of diplomatic action. Boosting a country’s power has never meant waging war in international relations.
Theorists of strategic issues stress that power control is performed through different mechanisms. From the perspective of strategic literature, diplomacy is considered as the first tool for controlling power and war is regarded as the last tool for balancing it among countries.
Various reports indicate that the US has been exploring ways to carry out limited and extensive operations against Iran’s facilities. According to one of this report published at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) by Anthony H. Cordesman, the cost of any war or military action against Iran would cost the US dearly.
Iran’s military strategy in 2013-14, before the era of the nuclear diplomacy, was based on "all-out defense”. The all-out defense strategy highlights this issue that if a country attacks another country’s facilities, then the targeted one can use all tools at its disposal to respond. The US has been always worried about Iran’s access to "strategic capability” because any US military attack against Iran could then lead to Iran's countermeasure. Iran’s regional and strategic countermeasure would raise US and its allies’ expenditures.
Any military action or threat of military action could be considered among the processes which would upgrade Iran’s operational and deterrent capabilities to deal with threats.
The United States had no interest in Iran’s power boostso that it can respond to the threats. Use of diplomacy will only do more strategic favors to the US. American officials have repeatedly said that the JCPOA will be more to the benefit of the US than Iran.
2. Economic and Strategic Outcomes of Nuclear diplomacy for Iran and US
A conflict is usually created when one of the players feels that it has not achieved desired results in the process of bilateral diplomatic cooperation. The Islamic Republic has decreased or cancelled out its varying nuclear capabilities, including enrichment, stockpiling, and heavy water technology in pursuance of the nuclear diplomacy. It shows that the US has managed to reach its desired results without any military action. Today, former US Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ strategy regarding "necessary and unnecessary war” has been implemented in line with US interests in the field of the nuclear diplomacy.
This is while Iran has not yet achieved the results it had anticipated even after fully honoring its obligations under the JCPOA. Such a situation will create new security problems and risks for Iran. A country which loses its power in pursuance of diplomacy will not be able to achieve its goals under circumstances of intimidation and conflict. Utility and effectiveness of every diplomatic and security process can be assessed only through the accomplished results.
The JCPOA has brought no effective and anticipated results for Iran’s diplomatic and strategic objectives. A wide range of Iran’s financial, banking and business areas are still under the sanction regime despite the nuclear deal. Realities as to the country’s housing market, industry, stock exchange and banking and financial transactions show that theimpact of sanctions are still in place. Such restrictions can be removed only via the national will.
Given the current situation, economic sanctions against Iran continue to exit in different layers of global economy and politics. Iran’s efforts aimed at removing the sanctions have had no effective outcome so far. Iran’s pattern of behavior can prepare the necessary ground for pursuing those goals that the United States is not that much willing to implement. Keeping a balance between "goals and objectives” of those involved in an agreement as well as "stability” of an accord can be referred to as the main signs of a real agreement. If Iran’s objectives are not accomplished, the deal will obviously fall through. The instability of the deal will lay the ground for reproduction of political conflicts.
Bringing every political conflict under control is possible only when players of a deal pursue a series of relatively balanced goals, interests and demand. If every actor feels that the diplomatic process to resolve political and strategic differences has not yielded desired results and demand, then grounds for recreation of the conflicts will come to exist. Given the current situation, elites in Iran and the US are critical of the JCPOA.
The US feels that it has achieved its objectives under the JCPOA and, therefore, sees no urgency to help Iran’s expectations from the deal come true. This is while Iranian officials have made good on their side of bargain, but the deal has had no remarkable results so far.
Under such circumstances, there are some methods through which one can prepare the ground for rivalry, escalation of differences, and political and security confrontation not in the too distant future. This shows that countries can avoid war when they possess necessary and effective deterrent power. Iran had this capability before the start of the nuclear diplomacy era. When a country loses its technical, instrumental and infrastructural capabilities in pursuance of diplomacy, it will be exposed to security and strategic threats more than anytime before.