Some former U.S. officials and issue experts say Israel appears to have accepted Iran being allowed some degree of nuclear capability, Al-Monitor reports.
The reported shift comes as talks between world powers and Iran point toward a likely outcome in which Tehran would retain a portion of its atomic program — which it says serves only peaceful purposes — albeit with some restrictions aimed at preventing an nuclear weapons program. Iran hopes to gain relief from international sanctions under a comprehensive deal still being finalized.
Al-Monitor cites one former U.S. official who participated in consultations with Israel last month as saying officials there seem to “understand that there is a need for a domestic, indigenous civil nuclear program” if the Iranians are to satisfy their domestic opposition. Jerusalem officials instead have turned their attention to potential problems involved in policing any nuclear deal between Tehran and the the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, the so-called “P-5+1” group.
“But two issues are going to be very hard to persuade the Israelis on,” Al-Monitor quotes an unnamed former U.S. diplomat involved in the recent consultations as saying. “Monitoring: There is very little belief anywhere in Israel that a [comprehensive nuclear] accord can be monitored … that ensures there is not going to be clandestine activity, and the Iranians [could] not break out” at some point.
In addition, the U.S. insiders report Israel is concerned that any Iranian violations of a nuclear deal would be so gradual and slow that Washington would find it hard to identify a point in time when action is warranted.
Meanwhile, a senior Obama administration official on Thursday reiterated Washington’s readiness to trigger new sanctions against Iran if upcoming negotiations in Vienna fail, the Jerusalem Post reported. “If talks break down, and if Iran is not negotiating in good faith, we are prepared to work with Congress to impose more sanctions,” Jake Sullivan, a deputy assistant to President Obama, said on Thursday at an event sponsored by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.
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Despite trailing Hillary Clinton by a significant margin, Bernie Sanders wasn't going the way of Ted Cruz tonight. The Vermont senator upset Clinton in Indiana, with MSNBC calling the race at 9pm. Sanders appears poised to win by a five- or six-point spread.
And just like that, it's over. Ted Cruz will suspend his presidential campaign after losing badly to Donald Trump in Indiana tonight. "While Cruz had always hedged when asked whether he would quit if he lost Indiana; his campaign had laid a huge bet on the state." John Kasich's campaign has pledged to carry on. “From the beginning, I’ve said that I would continue on as long as there was a viable path to victory,” said Cruz. “Tonight, I’m sorry to say it appears that path has been foreclosed."
The Republican establishment's last remaining hope—a contested convention this summer—may have just ended in Indiana, as Donald Trump won a decisive victory over Ted Cruz. Nothing Cruz seemed to have in his corner seemed to help—not a presumptive VP pick in Carly Fiorina, not a midwestern state where he's done well in the past, and not the state's legions of conservatives. Though Trump "won't secure the 1,237 delegates he needs to formally claim the nomination until June, his Indiana triumph makes it almost impossible to stop him. Following his decisive wins in New York and other East Coast states, the Indiana victory could put Trump within 200 delegates of the magic number he needs to clinch the nomination." Cruz, meanwhile, "now faces the agonizing choice of whether to remain in the race, with his attempt to force the party into a contested convention in tatters, or to bow out and cede the party nomination to his political nemesis." The Associated Press, which called the race at 7pm, predicts Trump will win at least 45 delegates.