U.S. Killing of Qasem Soleimani: Frequently Asked Questions

The January 2, 2020, U.S. killing in Iraq of Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) Commander Qasem Soleimani, generally regarded as one of the most powerful and important officials in Iran, has potentially dramatic implications for the United States. For Congress, it raises possible questions about U.S. policy in the Middle East, broader U.S. global… Continue Reading U.S. Killing of Qasem Soleimani: Frequently Asked Questions

U.S.-Iran Conflict and Implications for U.S. Policy

Since May 2019, U.S.-Iran tensions have heightened significantly, especially since U.S. military forces killed Qasem Soleimani, the commander of the Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force (IRGC-QF) and one of Iran’s most important military commanders, in a U.S. airstrike in Baghdad on January 2, 2020. The U.S.-Iran tensions have the potential to escalate into… Continue Reading U.S.-Iran Conflict and Implications for U.S. Policy

Iran: Internal Politics and U.S. Policy and Options

U.S.-Iran relations have been mostly adversarial—but with varying degrees of intensity—since the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran. U.S. officials have consistently identified Iran’s support for militant Middle East groups as a significant threat to U.S. interests and allies, and Iran’s nuclear program took precedence in U.S. policy after 2002 as that program advanced. In 2010,… Continue Reading Iran: Internal Politics and U.S. Policy and Options

Iran’s Foreign and Defense Policies

  Iran’s national security policy is the product of many overlapping and sometimes competing factors such as the ideology of Iran’s Islamic revolution, perception of threats to the regime and to the country, long-standing national interests, and the interaction of the Iranian regime’s factions and constituencies. Iran’s leadership: * Seeks to deter or thwart U.S.… Continue Reading Iran’s Foreign and Defense Policies

U.S.-Iran Tensions and Implications for U.S. Policy

  Since May 2019, U.S.-Iran tensions have escalated. The Trump Administration, following its 2018 withdrawal from the 2015 multilateral nuclear agreement with Iran (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, JCPOA), has taken several steps in its campaign of applying “maximum pressure” on Iran. Iran and Iran-linked forces have targeted commercial ships and infrastructure in U.S. partner… Continue Reading U.S.-Iran Tensions and Implications for U.S. Policy

U.S.-Iran Tensions and Implications for U.S. Policy

  In the spring of 2019, U.S.-Iran tensions have escalated. The Trump Administration, following its 2018 withdrawal from the 2015 multilateral nuclear agreement with Iran (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, JCPOA), has taken several steps in its campaign of applying “maximum pressure” on Iran. Iran or Iran-linked forces have targeted commercial ships and infrastructure in… Continue Reading U.S.-Iran Tensions and Implications for U.S. Policy

Iran’s Nuclear Program: Status

Iran’s nuclear program began during the 1950s. The United States has expressed concern since the mid-1970s that Tehran might develop nuclear weapons. Iran’s construction of gas centrifuge uranium enrichment facilities is currently the main source of proliferation concern. Gas centrifuges can produce both low-enriched uranium (LEU), which can be used in nuclear power reactors, and… Continue Reading Iran’s Nuclear Program: Status

Iran Sanctions

Successive Administrations have used sanctions extensively to try to change Iran’s behavior. Sanctions have a substantial effect on Iran’﷿s economy and on some major decisions, but little or no effect on Iran’﷿s regional malign activities. During 2012-2015, when the global community was relatively united in pressuring Iran, Iran’﷿s economy shrank as its crude oil exports… Continue Reading Iran Sanctions

Iran’s Nuclear Program: Tehran’s Compliance With International Obligations

Several U.N. Security Council resolutions adopted between 2006 and 2010 required Iran to cooperate fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAE’s) investigation of its nuclear activities, suspend its uranium enrichment program, suspend its construction of a heavy-water reactor and related projects, and ratify the Additional Protocol to its IAEA safeguards agreement. However, Tehran has… Continue Reading Iran’s Nuclear Program: Tehran’s Compliance With International Obligations