File Photo: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during joint statements with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (not in the picture) at the White House in Washington D.C., the United States, June 26, 2017. (Xinhua/Yin Bogu)
WASHINGTON, Oct. 13 (Xinhua) -- First it was the Paris climate deal. Then a key UN body on Thursday. Now U.S. President Donald Trump turned to defy another token of multilateralism -- the Iran nuclear deal, forboding a severe frustration to international diplomacy for non-proliferation.
Trump on Friday claimed to decertify Tehran's compliance of the landmark Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, also taking a tough toll to the U.S. global credibility.
Trump has been scrapping the political legacies of his predecessor Barack Obama altogether -- with much enthusiasm. He might have reaped wide applauses and high ratings before, but this time, his foreign policy impulses and odd appetite for unpredictability are set to draw the world's ire.
For starters, the premise of Trump's declaration that Tehran did not strictly abide by the pact is ill-grounded. The International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN nuclear watchdog, has issued nearly 10 reports over the past two years confirming Iran's commitments to the accord.
Furthermore, confronting the agreement will blight the U.S. reliability. Among all the repercussions, Trump might find it increasingly difficult to find a willing partner around the globe to solve thorny issues, since the White House has proved ready to tear apart any of its previous commitments -- even they are of globe concern -- as long as its next host does not favor them.
Moreover, as the nuclear crisis over the Korean Peninsula threatens to disintegrate into an all-out conflict, undermining such a hard-won nuke pact will diminish Pyongyang's expectations for any peace talks with Washington.
Last but not the least, a myopic nitpicking of the treaty derails the international diplomatic efforts for non-proliferation in the Middle East -- precisely the reason why the pact is necessary in the first place. A nuclear-armed Tehran would be far more menacing to regional and global security than is now.
It has always been easier to judge than to construct. Although Trump was not a fan of the Iran deal, neither he nor his cabinet officers have ever put forward an alternative as accredited to all the parties concerned as the current version.
Given the escalating tensions between Washington and Tehran, as well as Pyongyang, Trump would be well advised to turn to self-restraint from aggressive posture, and engage in what are constructive to the final settlement of the crisis.
The rule of the international politics demands compromise and consultation. Zero-sum games for one's own good are simply untenable in the current multipolar world.
Flawed as it may be, the multilateralism, as marked by the Paris climate pact, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and the Iran accord, remains the best option for the world, hence requiring better cooperation among countries to consummate it in the long run.
Sooner or later, it will dawn on the White House that the wheeler-dealer trick it has brandished for so long simply won't cut it anymore. The world has changed, and Washington would be sensible to change with it.