Former White House adviser Jared Kushner, widely credited as being the architect in several historic detentes between Israel and neighboring Arab/Muslim nations, penned a Wall Street Journal op-ed praising the Biden administration for its Iran policy.
“The Biden administration … has one asset that the Trump administration never had—a relationship with Iran,” Kushner wrote, according to Big League Politics.
“While many were troubled by the Biden team’s opening offer to work with Europe and rejoin the Iran deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, I saw it as a smart diplomatic move,” he added.
As a result of his administration’s diplomatic successes in the Middle East, Trump has been nominated several times for Nobel Peace prizes.
Kushner—who is married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka—was also nominated for the award, which is scheduled to be announced on Oct. 8 this year.
But bringing nations to the negotiating table meant offering reassurances that they would not be persecuted or threatened by Iran, which has long been a geopolitical powerhouse in countering Western influence.
A drastic change in policy might easily cause those efforts to unravel.
Kushner said Biden wisely saw that resurrecting the Obama-era Iran deal was infeasible, even as he publicly appeared ready to return to the negotiating table.
That soft approach prompted the rogue Islamic republic to overplay its hand by making outlandish demands even before Biden assumed the presidency.
However, “The Biden administration called Iran’s bluff,” Kushner noted.
“It revealed to the Europeans that the JCPOA is dead and only a new framework can bring stability for the future,” he said. “When Iran asked for a reward merely for initiating negotiations, President Biden did the right thing and refused.”
Since then, Biden has offered tough talk to Iran, although the fate of Trump-era sanctions that helped cripple its economy remains unclear.
Biden also claimed that a recent airstrike on Syria was done in retaliation for Iranian attacks on US targets in neighboring Iran.
Whether the Biden administration will be capable of producing a better armistice deal than the Obama administration, in which he served as vice president, remains unclear.
Former Secretary of State John Kerry, who negotiated that deal, is currently serving as Biden’s climate-change czar.
During the Trump administration, Kerry remained in dialogue with Iranian leaders, encouraging them—possibly in violation of the Logan Act—to wait it out after Trump canceled the nuclear deal as one of his first presidential acts.
Kushner made sure in his op-ed to mention the Trump administration’s remarkable progress in strengthening the US hand in the region after decades of war that only heightened anti-American sentiment.
“Eliminating the ISIS caliphate and bringing about six peace agreements—between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan, Morocco and Kosovo, plus uniting the Gulf Cooperation Council—has changed the paradigm,” he said.
With that in mind, he called on the Biden administration to carry the torch instead of regressing.
“The Biden administration is making China a priority in its foreign policy, and rightly so—one of Mr. Trump’s greatest legacies will be changing the world’s view of China’s behavior,” he said. “But it would be a mistake not to build on the progress in the Middle East.”