Check this Iranian gambit out:
Iran's foreign minister has warned the United States that failure to agree a nuclear deal would likely herald the political demise of pragmatist President Hassan Rouhani, Iranian officials said, raising the stakes as the decade-old stand-off nears its end-game.
Mohammad Javad Zarif pressed the concern with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry at several meetings in recent weeks, according to three senior Iranian officials, who said Iran had also raised the issue with other Western powers. Zarif's warning has not been previously reported.
You know that Kerry will buy the notion that a deal that lets a so-called "moderate" be the one who paves the way for Iran to go nuclear rather than giving a "hardliner" the credit would be a diplomatic triumph.
Sigh. I'd say Iran has the real "smart" diplomacy here, but is it fair to judge them that highly when the degree of difficulty is so low?
I've said it before and I'll say it again: We know the outline of a nuclear deal. Iran will pretend not to have a nuclear weapon program; and we will pretend to believe them.
Have a super sparkly day.
UPDATE: And don't forget that whatever deal Kerry strikes to save Rouhani's job will have to be approved by the hard-line mullahs who want nukes:
As his foreign minister met counterparties in the talks at a conference in Munich, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said he "firmly" backed a fair nuclear deal.
"I would go along with any agreement that could be made. Of course, if it is not a bad deal. No agreement is better than an agreement which runs contrary to our nation's interests," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told Iranian air force personnel, according to official news agencies.
Their definition of "fair" is the key, given that they say we have no right to hold them back.
This will work out just swell.
UPDATE: If we are to be saved from a bad deal with Iran, it may actually rest on the fact that Iran has so much contempt for us that they can't be bothered to try to deceive us:
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei announced on Sunday that he now opposes the signing of a “political framework agreement” that would, according to the Obama administration, establish the basic terms of a nuclear deal with Tehran prior to the conclusion of detailed final agreement. By ruling out the framework, Khamenei is reversing a commitment made by his own negotiating team in November. ...
Khamenei’s about-face creates a problem both for President Barack Obama and for Senate Democrats who have reservations about Obama’s policy but remain hesitant to oppose a president from their own party.
For Obama, the conclusion of a framework agreement before the March 24 deadline was supposed to demonstrate that the nuclear talks were making real progress, not serve as a pretext for Iran to benefit from sanctions relief while stalling on the diplomatic front.
Once Iran goes nuclear, the agenda for what Iran will talk about will be very different.