In the ongoing nuclear standoff involving the US and Iran – with Israel and the moderate Sunni Arab states the most actively interested parties on the sidelines – everyone has now blinked.

Where that means the nuclear standoff will go next is less certain.
The US blinked first.

Israeli intelligence sources have explained that when Washington saw that Ebrahim Raisi would be elected president, it softened some of its redlines, hoping to wrap up a deal before he came on.
These softened positions included showing a willingness to allow the Islamic Republic place its advanced centrifuges – which could allow it to produce a material for a nuclear bomb at a faster rate – in storage as opposed to the original demand that almost all be destroyed.
Incidentally, under the 2015 JCPOA Iran nuclear deal, Tehran was allowed to retain a very limited number of its advanced centrifuges, compared to the now hundreds it has operating.
Further, the Biden administration reportedly showed some additional flexibility on which sanctions it would remove as part of a return to the JCPOA.

These pre-Raisi concessions are part of what may have encouraged the new Iranian leader to seek more concessions by stalling he negotiations for four months and barreling forward with 60% enrichment – only one step down from the 90% needed for weapons-grade uranium. READ MORE

US, Iran, Israel nuke standoff, everyone blinks - now what? - analysis

Josh Toupos

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