Both Israel and Iran Pleased by Extension of Nuke Talks

Tuesday, November 25, 2014 |  Ryan Jones

A US-set deadline for concluding an agreement with Iran over its defiant nuclear program passed on Monday, forcing Washington and its allies to extend the negotiations by another seven months, a development that pleased both Israel and the Islamic Republic.

"New ideas surfaced" in the days leading up to the deadline, US Secretary of State John Kerry said without elaborating, before reiterating his position that the US and the West "would be fools to walk away" from 12-years of diplomatic efforts that have thus far born little, if any, fruit.

Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, saw in the extension of the talks and Kerry's attitude toward the situation a clear victory for Iran.

On his English-language Twitter account, the Iranian leader gloated that "arrogant" world powers had done their best to "bring Iran to its knees, but they were not able and will not be able to do so."

Israel has long feared that Iran is simply stringing the West along until such a time that it can successfully test a nuclear device, at which point negotiations become moot.

Nevertheless, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated on his Facebook page that Israel, too, was happy with the extension of negotiations, at least when compared to the alternative.

Netanyahu had been tirelessly warning the West against accepting the currently tabled nuclear arrangement, which would have effectively enabled Iran to continue a suspected clandestine nuclear arms program, while being relieved of nearly all international sanctions.

"We have always said that no agreement is preferable to a bad agreement and the agreement that Iran signed is a very bad and dangerous agreement for Israel, for the region and in my opinion for the future of the entire world," wrote the Israeli leader.

He later told the BBC that "the right deal that is needed is to dismantle Iran's capacity to make atomic bombs and only then dismantle the sanctions."

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