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EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif before meeting with the British, French and German foreign ministers, Brussels, May 15, 2018 (AP photo by Thierry Monasse).

The Iran Deal Exposes Europe’s Weaknesses as a Global Power

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. Last week, in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, German Chancellor Angela Merkel solemnly declared that from now on Europe would have to take its destiny in its own hands.

It’s hard to disagree with Merkel. But that was already true the first time she expressed the sentiment in May 2017, in the aftermath of Trump’s first visit to Europe as president. In the meantime, Europe has not done anything to fundamentally address the challenge of managing trans-Atlantic relations under Trump. As a result, a week after the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal—officially the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA—it is becoming increasingly clear that Europe will be hard pressed to back up its outrage with actions to defend the agreement—and its interests. ...

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