Fri, Oct 13, 2017: Trump announces decision to decertify Iran deal

President Trump announced on Friday his decision to disavow the Iran nuclear agreement, threatening to leave the deal altogether if it was not amended to permanently block Tehran from building nuclear weapons or intercontinental missiles.

But even as he delivered a fire-breathing indictment of the Iranian government’s activities around the Middle East, he stopped short of unraveling the agreement reached by President Barack Obama two years ago.

“We will not continue down a path whose predictable conclusion is more violence, more chaos, the very real threat of Iran’s nuclear breakout,” Mr. Trump declared at the White House in a speech that was intended to define a broad strategy for confronting Iran.

Mr. Trump’s decision not to certify that Iran was complying with all terms of the agreement came after a fierce debate inside the administration, according to a senior official familiar with the discussions and who agreed to describe them on the condition of anonymity.

Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis argued that it was in the national security interests of the United States to keep the deal’s constraints on Iran. The two men succeeded, over time, in persuading Mr. Trump not to immediately scrap the accord, despite his campaign promise to do so.

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Fri, Feb. 3, 2017: Trump administration tightens sanctions on Iran after missile test

The Trump administration on Friday imposed sanctions on Iran, which it said were just “initial steps” and said Washington would no longer turn a “blind eye” to Iran’s hostile actions.

The sanctions on 25 individuals and entities were the opening salvo by President Donald Trump who has vowed a more aggressive policy against Tehran and came two days after the administration had put Iran ‘on notice’ following a ballistic missile test.

“The Trump Administration will no longer tolerate Iran’s provocations that threaten our interests,” National Security Advisor Michael Flynn said. Continue reading “Fri, Feb. 3, 2017: Trump administration tightens sanctions on Iran after missile test”

Thur, Feb. 2, 2017: Trump, Iran in Twitter feud after missile test

A day after the Trump administration put Iran on notice for its launch of a ballistic missile, a war of words erupted between the American president and the Iranian government, with President Trump insulting Tehran on Twitter and the Iranians responding in kind.

A top adviser to Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said on Thursday that Iran would not be intimidated by threats from “an inexperienced person.” Mr. Trump’s national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, had warned Iran that it faced unspecified reprisals from the United States if it did not cease aggressive behavior toward its neighbors.

Mr. Trump echoed Mr. Flynn’s threat with a pair of early morning Twitter posts, in which he accused the Iranians of ingratitude for the nuclear deal negotiated with the West, which he asserted had rescued Iran from collapse. Continue reading “Thur, Feb. 2, 2017: Trump, Iran in Twitter feud after missile test”

Fri, Jan. 27, 2017: Trump signs executive order to keep ‘radical Islamic terrorists’ out of U.S.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order Friday that indefinitely suspends admissions for Syrian refugees and limits the flow of other refugees into the United States by instituting what the President has called “extreme vetting” of immigrants.

Titled “Protection Of The Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States,” the executive order would start to make good on Trump’s promise to tighten borders and halt certain refugees from entering the United States.
The text of the order — in a break from drafts that had been circulating earlier this week — drops a longtime Trump campaign pledge to establish safe zones in Syria to give Syrian nationals displaced by the ongoing civil war in the country a place to relocate.

The order bars all persons from certain terror-prone countries from entering the United States for 90 days and suspends the US Refugee Admissions Program for 120 days until it is reinstated “only for nationals of countries for whom” members of Trump’s Cabinet deem can be properly vetted. Continue reading “Fri, Jan. 27, 2017: Trump signs executive order to keep ‘radical Islamic terrorists’ out of U.S.”