Iran's president Hassan Rouhani meets with German Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel at his office in Tehran, Iran, Monday, July 20, 2015. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
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Let's imagine that the opponents of the nuclear agreement with Iran get their way.Within one year, Iran would have more than 25,000 centrifuges, its breakout time would shrink to mere weeks, and the sanctions against it would crumble.In 2005, three European powers rejected a nuclear deal with Iran after two years of negotiations.There is no doubt that Iran has the capacity to make centrifuges, even under crippling sanctions. Between November 2012 and November 2013, when all international sanctions against Iran were in place, it installed 6,000 new centrifuges. For most of the other countries involved, the sanctions were enacted specifically to bring Iran to the negotiating table. These countries would not allow them to be turned into a permanent mechanism to strangle Iran. As for the belief that the Islamic Republic will collapse soon, there is little evidence for this hope. More importantly, we know that a more democratic Iran would likely still support a nuclear program.
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