AirTalk for November 20, 2013

Iran nuclear talks and embassy bombings in Beirut

US-DIPLOMACY-OSAC-KERRY

PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images

US Secretary of State John Kerry delivers remarks on 'Securing American Entities Operating Abroad' at the US Department of State Bureau of Diplomatic Security Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) November 20, 2013, during their 28th Annual Briefing at the US Department of State in Washington, DC.

Nuclear negotiations between Iran and six countries have resumed in Geneva. It’s the third time they’ve come together in a month to try to hammer out a deal that would curtail Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for reduced economic sanctions. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad sounded upbeat about the renewed talks and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s postponement of a scheduled visit to Israel this week is fueling speculation again that an accord is indeed near.

The issue, however, is driving a wedge between the U.S. and Israel in what some observers are calling one of the biggest dispute between the two allies in 30 years. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said that any nuclear deal with Iran short of banning its nuclear program outright would be a threat to Israel’s safety.

Adding to all the moving pieces are two bombings against the Iranian Embassy in Beirut, which killed 23 people including a diplomat. An al-Qaida-linked group claimed responsibility for the attacks in retaliation for Hezbollah’s support of the Assad regime in the ongoing Syrian civil war.

Guests:
Patrick McDonnell, Beirut Bureau Chief for the Los Angeles Times

John Hudson, National security staff writer for Foreign Policy magazine


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