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U.S. President Donald Trump's decision earlier this month to withdraw the United States from the Iran nuclear agreement, and to shift toward a policy of renewed sanctions and confrontation, will make the future of the Middle East even more uncertain.Trump's decision cannot be justified by any breach of the agreement on Iran's part. It is, rather, a return to the old, largely unsuccessful U.S. policy of confrontation with Iran. It was also supposed to be the first step toward creating a new, more stable regional order that would include Iran.Instead, the most important regional players – Israel, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey – have all been vying for influence in the war in Syria and collectively sliding toward a hopeless conflict for mastery of the entire region.The deal was meant to reintegrate Iran into the international order, thereby encouraging it to play a more responsible regional role.Make no mistake, though: One way or another, Iran will remain an integral part of the Middle East.Once Iran loses its economic lifeline from Europe and other parts of the world, it might well decide to restart its nuclear program, or even to withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, raising the risk of war.
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