The Hindu Editorial With Vocabulary ( 21 Sep 2017 ) : Nuclear deal in danger : On Trump’s UNGA address

The Hindu Editorial With Vocabulary,

  • U.S. President Donald Trump’s opposition to the Iran nuclear deal is not new. But by choosing his first address at the UN General Assembly, in which he listed his administration’s foreign policy priorities, to slam Tehran and the nuclear accord, he has put to rest any hope for improvement in ties with Iran. In his tirade on Tuesday, he called the Iran deal, which the U.S. and five other countries had signed with Tehran two years ago, an “embarrassment”, and “one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into”.
  • Unsurprisingly, it triggered a reaction from Iran. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif called out Mr. Trump’s “ignorant hate speech”, which he said belonged to “medieval times”. The message from the Trump administration is clear and consistent: the Obama-era pragmatism was an aberration and the decades-old hostility between the U.S. and the theocratic regime in Tehran stands resumed. The real test before Mr. Trump and the Iranians comes in less than a month. According to U.S. law, the administration must certify the Iran deal every 90 days. The Trump administration has twice done so, and the next deadline is October 15. Mr. Trump has already signalled that he would withdraw the certification next time. If he does so, it would be the beginning of the unravelling of an agreement that was forged after months of intense negotiation.
  • Failure of the U.S. to respect an international agreement it’s a signatory to would set a dangerous precedent. For all its shortcomings, the Iran nuclear deal is a multilateral agreement. And it has shown results. What had appeared to be an irresolvable issue only three years ago is now settled. International agencies have repeatedly certified that Iran is fully compliant with the terms of the agreement, which means the country is not pursuing any nuclear weapons programme. In plain terms, the deal is a success as it prevented a country with potential nuclear capabilities from developing weapons, and all this without a shot being fired. If the U.S. is serious about non-proliferation, it should use the Iran deal to resolve other complex international conflicts. What’s happening is just the contrary. Iran has been slapped with more sanctions by the U.S. over its missile programme. If Iran is not spared even after it agreed to give up a substantial part of its nuclear programme under a multilateral agreement, what message does it send to other countries about international diplomacy? No doubt, Mr. Trump’s continued attack on the Iran deal pleases hard-line supporters at home as well as Arab allies and Israel in West Asia. But it is undermining the global non-proliferation regime and international institutions. Should the U.S. pull out of the Iran deal, it would be a great setback for rules-based multilateral mechanisms.


Tirade: a long, angry speech of criticism or accusation.
Example: A tirade of abuse
Synonyms: diatribe, harangue, rant, onslaught, attack, polemic, denunciation, broadside

Embarrassment: a feeling of self-consciousness, shame, or awkwardness.
Example: I turned red with embarrassment
Synonyms: mortification, humiliation, shame, shamefacedness, chagrin, awkwardness

Trigger: cause an event or situation to happen or exist.
Example: An allergy can be triggered by stress or overwork
Synonyms: precipitate, prompt, elicit, trigger off, set off, spark (off), touch off

Ignorant: lacking knowledge or awareness in general; uneducated or unsophisticated.
Example: He was told constantly that he was ignorant and stupid
Synonyms: uneducated, unknowledgeable, untaught, unschooled, untutored

Pragmatism: a pragmatic attitude or policy.
Example: Ideology was tempered with pragmatism

Aberration: a departure from what is normal, usual, or expected, typically one that is unwelcome.
Example: They described the outbreak of violence in the area as an aberration
Synonyms: anomaly, deviation, departure from the norm, divergence

Unravel: investigate and solve or explain something complicated or puzzling.
Example: They were attempting to unravel the cause of death
Synonyms: solve, resolve, clear up, puzzle out, unscramble, get to the bottom of

Precedent: an earlier event or action that is regarded as an example or guide to be considered in subsequent similar circumstances.
Example: There are substantial precedents for using interactive media in training
Synonyms: model, exemplar, example, pattern, previous case, prior instance/example

Irresolvable: impossible to solve or settle.
Example: In one sense, this ethical move by Levinas solves the previously irresolvable problem of self/other relations.

Proliferation: rapid increase in numbers.
Example: A continuing threat of nuclear proliferation

Slap: hit someone or something with the palm of one’s hand or a flat object.
Example: My sister slapped my face
Synonyms: hit, strike, smack, clout, cuff, thump, punch, spank, whack