By Lt. General Robert Gard and Angela Canterbury
Now that President Barack Obama has signed a bill giving Congress, at its request, greater oversight authority over any potential Iran nuclear agreement — including the explicit opportunity to vote down the deal — the cacophony from those opposed to diplomatic negotiations with Iran has reached a new high.
Despite the fact that the details have yet to be finalized (a deadline has been set for June 30th), opponents are arguing that the agreement President Obama is close to reaching with Iran is a “bad deal” and that we should hold out for a “better deal” or abandon this process completely and increase pressure on Iran in a quest to force it to capitulate.
But absent from these discussions is any compelling evidence that the proposed deal would fail to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons without our knowledge. This is why the U.S. and the international community imposed crippling sanctions on Iran and are now negotiating to block Tehran’s path to the bomb. And in exchange for Iranian compliance with that mandate, we in turn will relieve the sanctions pressure. Diplomacy seeks mutual benefits, and we need to give it space to work.