Biden navigates the Iran-Syria conflict while the progress of the nuclear talks

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Biden navigates the Iran-Syria conflict while the progress of the nuclear talks

Source: AUN News

“Actors on both sides strive to disrupt them whenever the U.S. and Iran are close to successful negotiations,” claimed Joe Cirincione, a national security analyst and author. They once held the president of the Ploughshares Fund, which focuses on nuclear nonproliferation. He mentioned that the accord is opposed by Israel and some Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps members. “The objective is the same: to cause a crisis that would render diplomacy and a deal impractical.”

In this instance, experts agreed that the Biden administration’s technique of demonstrating its ability to walk and chew gum simultaneously worked well.

Mick Mulroy, a former Pentagon official in the Trump administration, said: “We defended ourselves right away, and we are still in negotiations.”

Iranian proxies have been more active in the area recently, despite official nuclear negotiations making headway. According to Defence Department officials, Militants in Syria under the control of the IRGC have increased low-level strikes against American and coalition positions in Syria.

Events in Syria

According to Seth Jones of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Iran may be attempting to utilise the activities in Syria to increase its leverage in nuclear negotiations. He said that the removal of American forces from the Middle East, where Iran has increased its influence recently, is more crucial for Tehran.

According to Jones, the current bloodshed and carnage in Syria primarily manifest the tensions between the United States and Iran. Some of them are in the military, while others are diplomats.

The government was alerted to two occurrences in Syria on August 15: a botched drone attack near the al-Tanf Garrison and a missile attack on Green Village. The United States did not act straight away. Instead, it took several days to ensure that any retaliatory strikes communicated the appropriate message and did not result in fatalities.

Making the issue worse

According to a senior administration official, “DoD tried to choose a target that would communicate the message we needed without further aggravating the situation.” “They spent countless hours gathering intelligence to ensure there were no deaths from the strike and to set up the area in case the Iranian-backed organisations decided to launch another attack after ours. To accomplish something correctly takes time.

But a senior DoD official stated that one reason the reaction was delayed a few days was for officials to argue the impact on nuclear negotiations. They, like other people in this piece, spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss a sensitive subject.

On Tuesday, Biden’s directive, American fighter jets attacked bunkers used by organisations connected to the IRGC in Deir Ez-Zor, Syria. According to Colin Kahl, the senior policy official at the Pentagon, the U.S. military first identified 11 targets at the location. Still, it only struck nine due to indications of movement near two bunkers just before the strike.

According to Kahl, the purpose of the retaliatory strike was to send a message that the United States would protect itself regardless of the outcome of the nuclear agreement discussions.

“The administration has been quite clear that it is in our interests for Iran to return to JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] compliance because it keeps Iran one step away from developing nuclear weapons,” said the administration. However, according to Kahl, whether or not the JCPOA is revived has nothing to do with our readiness and determination to protect ourselves. “The hit last night sent the Iranians a strong message that these things are moving in various directions.

Deals with nuclear issues

According to Cirincione, the response was probably intended to convince American friends that Washington can continue to take action against Iran’s malicious behaviour in the area even as it negotiates a nuclear deal. Senior Israeli officials paid a visit to Washington this week as the administration pressured Biden to abandon the nuclear agreement. Tuesday, the day of the Syrian airstrikes, Israeli national security adviser Eyal Hulata met with counterpart Jake Sullivan at the White House.

The United States will contest that there is any relationship, but the man stated, “I’m a superstitious man, and I’ve seen this pattern much too frequently.” They needed to reassure the allies to finalise the treaty, and I believe this was their method.

However, the clashes continued after that. Three American service members were hurt when IRGC-backed terrorists conducted rocket assaults in reprisal on Green Village and Conoco, two different locations in northeastern Syria. According to a statement from U.S. Central Command, one American military member received treatment for a minor injury and returned to work. In contrast, two others are being assessed for minor wounds.

Administration’s lack of interest

U.S. attack helicopters destroyed three vehicles and some rockets’ launch infrastructure as part of their early response. The insurgents then tried to fire more missiles, but American soldiers bombarded the area with artillery, helicopter, and gunships. The American military managed to take out seven hostile rocket launchers and four enemy fighters.

According to a third U.S. official, the Pentagon determined that the latest salvo was over and deterrence had been restored after the strike.

The back-and-forth appears not to impede the pace of the nuclear conversations thus far. The Biden administration’s unwillingness to remove the IRGC from the list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations is one issue that the two parties seem to have put behind them.

On Wednesday, the U.S. transmitted to the EU its response to Iran’s most recent remarks on the draught proposal. At this point in the negotiations, it is anticipated that the Iranian requests for economic guarantees and sanctions relief will be the principal grounds of contention.

Analysis: Advocacy Unified Network

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