“Why would we relent in our longstanding policy of seeking to ensure that Iran is not on the threshold of producing nuclear weapons? Fundamentally, according to the Obama administration, it is because this deal will increase Iran’s nuclear weapons break-out time from two or three months today to at least one year. I understand that there is some disagreement among experts whether this is really true, but for purposes of my testimony today I will assume that it is true. And if true, this is good news, because it means that Iran will be significantly further away from being able to produce its first nuclear weapon than it is today.
“Like virtually all the other claims made about this deal, however, one needs to add to this claim the caveat that the agreement will do this only for the next 10 to 15 years. And if it’s very important today to extend Iran’s breakout time to one year, it’s fair to ask why that will stop being important after 10 years.”