By David Shedd, originally published in NationalInterest.org
Lifting the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ designation as a terrorist organization would harm U.S. interests and the Iranian people.
The Biden administration’s feverish pursuit to resurrect the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement is grounded in the false hope that the Iranian regime’s behavior can be modified by making more and more concessions. Tehran’s rulers have a perfect record of non-compliance with every agreement during their four decades in power.
One major concession reportedly being considered by the Biden administration is lifting the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ status (IRGC) as a designated Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). Such a concession would foolishly accept assurances that the IRGC will change its behavior and stop using terrorism as an instrument of national power.
Optimism for a deal has waned slightly in recent days, with State Department spokesman Ned Price declaring that the United States is “preparing equally” for scenarios in which the agreement is revitalized or collapses altogether. For some critics of the ongoing negotiations, this appears to be a tactic to demonstrate to Congress that the administration has, despite all evidence to the contrary, take a firm stance in the negotiations. Since Iran rebuffed a draft agreement that was reported to be almost 100 percent completed in February, it has become increasingly clear that the accord’s revival would depend upon unjustifiable concessions to Iran’s regime, particularly those affiliated with its hardline paramilitary organization, the IRGC.