The IAEA is reporting once again that Iran is in compliance with the requirements of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA):

Iran has stayed within the main restrictions on its nuclear activities imposed by a 2015 deal with major powers, a confidential report by the U.N. atomic watchdog indicated on Thursday.

The IAEA has found Iran to be in compliance with the terms of the nuclear deal twelve consecutive times. Iran has continued to abide by the restrictions included in the agreement even after the U.S. violated the deal and reneged on its commitments. This latest report is one more reminder that the nuclear deal has been completely successful in doing what it was intended to do, namely limit Iran’s nuclear program and ensure that it remained peaceful. Trump’s decision to renege on a successful agreement was an irrational and purely destructive act that harms U.S. interests, and he and his allies are doing their utmost to collapse the agreement through the unjustified reimposition of sanctions.

Iran hawks have been dead-set against any nuclear agreement that might be acceptable to Iran, and that should make it clear that they have never been interested in resolving the nuclear issue. That is why they have had to misrepresent what the deal does and what it was supposed to do, because no one could honestly oppose the deal on the grounds that it failed to restrict Iran’s nuclear program. The nuclear issue has been very useful as an excuse to bludgeon and isolate Iran, and the negotiation of the JCPOA deprived them of that excuse.

Hawks loathe diplomacy with adversaries not because it might lead to a deal that favors the other side, but because it takes away their pretext for hostility and conflict. They aren’t really worried that our government will “appease” the other state, but that the other state might start to be treated normally and will be harder to attack later. The Trump administraton’s push to strangle Iran’s economy and force other countries to cease doing business with Iran is the clearest demonstration that punishing Iran and pursuing the overthrow of its government are and have always been the goals of hawkish opponents of the nuclear deal. No one should believe them when they claim otherwise.