A mistake in the mainstream media coverage of the P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran is the assumption that there were only two options, war or negotiations. Not only is there a third option, increasing the sanctions, but there are many shades of grey in between.

A new poll commissioned by Tower Magazine and executed by Luntz Global shows that by huge margins both Democrats and Republicans want renewed sanctions against the Iranian government, in addition to and regardless of current negotiations.

  • Overall Americans believe the Iranian government is more dangerous than all the other Middle Eastern countries combined. Half (49%) picked Iran as the greatest threat to the United States, more than Iraq (15%), Pakistan (13%), Afghanistan  (12%), and Syria (9%) combined. Iran was chosen as the most feared by all political parties.
  • Only 7% of Americans trust the Iranian claim that their nuclear program is exclusively peaceful and they are not seeking to develop weapons, while 77% do not trust Iran when they say the program is peaceful. 
  • The biggest concern, held by 61% of Americans is that Iran would provide nuclear weapons to terrorist groups for attacks on the U.S. and the west.
  • A plurality of both parties, 43% of Democrats and 44% of Republicans, want “further economic sanctions and financial pressure.” Only 24% of Democrats and 12% of Republicans prefer the  President’s strategy of more negotiations and less financial pressure. 
  •  Americans do not believe that Iran will follow through on what they agreed to in the latest deal An overwhelming 86% (78% among Democrats and 95% among Republicans) think Iran will break its promises during the negotiation process)
  •  Only16% believe Iran is “negotiating in good faith and will eventually give up their ability to make nuclear weapons, 84% think Iran is using negotiations “to stall as they continue to develop their ability to make nuclear weapons.”
  • While the Administration may be willing to allow Iran to keep some of its enrichment abilities, most Americans don’t agree, 81% of Democrats and 93 % of Republicans think we should prohibit Iran from possessing any sort of enrichment or related nuclear fuel capability – again, regardless of where the talks stand.

There are a few pieces of learning from this poll. firstly the Administration’s claim that America is behind their P5+1 negotiation strategy seems to be very very wrong. Secondly the media claim that the reason to stop Iran is to protect our ally Israel is also false. Americans justifiably worry about the Iranian nuclear program because the fear America may be attacked.

For more about the study, click here and go to The Tower