The former Secretary of State has a personal stake in the survival of this agreement because it defines his legacy of service under the Obama Administration, but as a Democrat, he also has political reasons for trying to thwart Trump's plans. Even so and regardless of intent, the case can be made that Kerry is in violation of the 1799 Logan Act prohibiting civilians from conducting diplomacy contrary to the government's position on any issue.
There are of course very serious domestic political implications over Kerry's "shadow diplomacy", especially in relation to the "deep state's" incessant efforts to obstruct the implementation of Trump's policies just for the sake of it, but it also speaks to the wariness that some have of the overall strategic consequences of the nuclear deal's failure. The forthcoming reimposition of energy-related sanctions against Iran in November is expected to hit its economy very hard, potentially catalyzing even more wide-scale unrest than what's already on display in the country and possibly leading to more security challenges for its government.
Iran is one of the lynchpins of contemporary Mideast affairs, with Trump assessing its regional role very negatively while Kerry is apparently a bit more pragmatic. These contrasting perceptions are also partially responsible for the "deep state" divide in the State Department, as many Obama-era supporters share Kerry's views while some of them — and especially Trump's appointees and those ideologically loyal to him — stand with the current President. The first-mentioned faction isn't as eager to see Iran destabilized as the latter one is, hence why it's behind Kerry's unprecedented "shadow diplomacy", while the second group is regarded as hawks and is eagerly awaiting the Hybrid War consequences that Trump's aggressive policies might have for Iran.
Pouya Sharif, Iranian student activist from Germany, and Niall Bradley, Editor and analyst for the independent news site SOTT.net, joined our discussion.
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