POLITICO Tiger Beat on The Potomac reports today that the Arms Control Association, a nonpartisan group based in Washington, released a statement (.pdf) Tuesday morning declaring the P5+1 world powers nuclear arms agreement with Iran limiting Iran’s nuclear program in return for sanctions relief is “a net-plus for international nuclear non-proliferation efforts.” Nuclear experts fall in behind Obama:
Among the 75 signatories are the former CIA agent Valerie Plame and her husband, Joe Wilson, prominent opponents of the Iraq War. Others include Hans Blix, a former director of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); Morton Halperin, a foreign policy veteran of three administrations; and Thomas Pickering, a retired diplomat and former U.S. ambassador to Israel.
Several former United Nations disarmament officials, along with leaders of think tanks and foundations dedicated to preventing the spread of nuclear arms, also added their names. Some of the signatories are already known supporters of the deal, which was struck in July.
Their message amplifies a core argument of the Obama administration: that the nuclear deal is well built and durable, and exceeds historical standards for arms control agreements.
If fulfilled by all parties, the statement says, the agreement “will reduce the risk of a destabilizing nuclear competition in a troubled region… and head off a catastrophic military conflict over Iran’s nuclear program.”
Amid a political uproar in Washington, the deal has mostly been celebrated by technical experts. Earlier this month, 29 prominent scientists wrote to Obama saying the deal has “more stringent constraints than any previously negotiated non-proliferation framework.”
The Arms Control Association statement argues that the deal’s monitoring and verification provisions “make it very likely that any future effort by Iran to pursue nuclear weapons, even a clandestine program, would be detected promptly, providing the opportunity to intervene decisively to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.”
[The statement] notes that “all of us could find ways to improve the text” of the deal, while adding that “[we] see no realistic prospect for a better nuclear agreement.”
For more information, see the Arms Control Association – Official Site.