May 1st, 2012

Click here to read Jeremy Ben-Ami's op-ed on preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.

J Street believes that Iran obtaining nuclear weapons would pose a very serious threat to American and Israeli interests and to peace and stability in the Middle East and around the world. Reports of progress in Iran’s nuclear program, including the assessment issued in November 2011 by the International Atomic Energy Agency, are deeply troubling.

The United States has a fundamental interest, along with Israel and the international community, in preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability, and J Street supports concrete American actions to address this threat. We support a comprehensive and multilateral approach, including sanctions and active diplomacy.

To that end, J Street lobbied for the passage of strong sanctions against the Iranian regime. We also supported President Obama’s early efforts to engage Iran diplomatically and commend his success in securing new multilateral sanctions through the United Nations Security Council in 2010.

American policy going forward should use stronger sanctions and continued diplomacy to pose a stark choice for the Iranian Government. It can continue on its present path and face ever deeper international isolation or change its behavior, in particular by fulfilling its obligations under the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty. This includes clearly and verifiably desisting from proscribed nuclear proliferation activities. This path will allow it to re-integrate into the international community with the opportunity to develop its economy to its full potential. Accordingly, we oppose any Congressional effort to limit the President’s authority to pursue diplomacy with Iran.

We also support American efforts to bolster pro-democracy efforts by civil society reformers in Iran. Human rights should be part of the agenda of U.S. and international engagement with Iran and the region as a whole.

Finally, like many American and Israeli security experts, we believe that a military strike against Iran would be ill-advised (Click here to see 'What The Experts Are Saying On Iran'). While unlikely to permanently disable Iran’s nuclear program, a military strike would have dire consequences and runs the risk of igniting a broader regional war. A preemptive attack could also strengthen the current regime in Iran and provide an excuse for it to redouble its nuclear efforts. We therefore oppose legislation authorizing, encouraging, or in other ways laying the groundwork for the use of military force against Iran.

Watch our video “What the Experts Are Saying”:

More experts speak out on the consequences of war with Iran.

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