Nuclear Issues

1141 Items

U.S. and Iranian negotiators sit around a cured table as media with cameras and microphones crowd the foreground.

Joe Klamar/Pool Photo via AP

Paper - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Nuclear About-Face: Examining the Role of Collective Face Concerns in Iran's Nuclear Decision-Making

| July 2023

By looking beyond solely Iran’s security motivations, this paper by Sahar Nowrouzzadeh seeks to inform more holistic negotiation strategies that can potentially influence Iran’s nuclear decision-making in a manner more favorable to U.S. interests.

People inspect the wreckage of buildings that were damaged by Saudi-led coalition airstrikes, in Sanaa, Yemen, Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022.

AP Photo/Hani Mohammed

Analysis & Opinions - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Significance of the Iran-Saudi Arabia Agreement Brokered by China

Belfer Center experts on the U.S.-China relationship and Middle East issues shared thoughts on the significance of the unexpected Iran-Saudi Arabia agreement brokered by China. 

Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani

AP/Vahid Salemi

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Will Russia Torpedo the Iran Nuclear Deal?

| Mar. 10, 2022

Hamidreza Azizi and Nicole Grajewski analyze Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov's recent demands  for written guarantees that Western sanctions over Ukraine "will by no means affect our right to free and full-fledged trading, economic, investment, military and technical cooperation with Iran."

People hold Ukrainian flag in front of the Ukrainian Embassy


Analysis & Opinions - Atlantic Council

As the World Shuns Russia Over its Invasion of Ukraine, Iran Strengthens its Ties with Moscow

| Mar. 07, 2022

Nicole Grajewski analyzes why Russia's international isolation and acrimonious relations with the West offer Tehran and Moscow further incentives to strengthen relations as both face strategic loneliness in the international arena. Short of full recognition of Russia's territorial claims in Ukraine, Iran will likely remain one of the few states willing to outwardly support Moscow's narrative and political justifications for invading its neighbor.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, left, welcomes Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov

Iranian Foreign Ministry via AP

Journal Article - Asian Affairs

An Illusory Entente: The Myth of a Russia-China-Iran “Axis”

| 2022

This article examines the trilateral relations between Russia, China, and Iran through their engagement in various issues from domestic, regional, and international levels. It explores the practices and coordination between Russia, China, and Iran in the international order, the Iranian Nuclear Program, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, domestic regime security, and economic connectivity. The article concludes that although Russia, China, and Iran have had overlapping interests and approaches in terms of contesting the Western created and dominated international "liberal" order, strengthening domestic regime security, defending authoritarian governance, and supporting de-dollarization, all of which have brought the three sides closer, a Russia–China-Iran axis has not thus far materialized. Rather, due to the lack of regularized and institutionalized mechanisms, the tripartite relationship remains an illusory entente, which is essentially driven by the bilateral ties followed by modest trilateral coordination in ad-hoc situations.

Posters of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in Iraq in a U.S. drone attack on Jan. 3, 2020, are seen in front of Qiam, background left, Zolfaghar, top right, and Dezful missiles displayed in a missile capabilities exhibition by the paramilitary Revolutionary Guard at Imam Khomeini grand mosque in Tehran on Jan. 7, 2022 (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi).

AP Photo/Vahid Salemi

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Affairs

America Has No Good Options on Iran

| Jan. 17, 2022

The hard truth is that the United States now has few good options for containing Iran’s nuclear program. It can persist with the no-deal status quo, allowing Iran to continue inching closer to a bomb while suffering under sanctions. It can pursue a return to the 2015 agreement and then attempt to get Iran to agree to a “longer and stronger” pact, as the Biden team has suggested. It can try for various other deals, either more or less stringent than the 2015 agreement. Or it can attempt to destroy Iran’s nuclear infrastructure with a military strike, possibly setting Tehran’s progress toward a bomb back by a few years but almost certainly provoking retaliation and possibly a sprint toward the nuclear finish line.