Rex Tillerson, Chairman an CEO of Exxon Mobil, was named this week as the next administration’s Secretary of State to execute the tough foreign policies charted by president-elect Donald Trump, including his decision to stiffen the nuclear accord signed with Iran as soon as he moves into the White House on Jan. 20.
DEBKAfile reports this exclusively from New York and its intelligence sources.
While campaigning for the presidency, Trump called the accord “the worst deal” ever.
According to our sources, a special team is already working on revisions of the accord which the US and five other global powers concluded with Iran in 2015 in the hope of retarding Iran’s nuclear weapons program by a decade.
As new president, Trump will issue Tehran with a unilateral demand to accept those revisions as pre-condition for the continuation of relations between the US and Iran. He does not intend consulting America’s co-signers, Russia, China, Germany, Britain and France, or asking them for their endorsement of the revamped accord.
The teams preparing the Trump administration’s Iran policy were put in place last week by Tillerson and designated national security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn.
No members of the incumbent NSC, State Department, Pentagon or Treasury, who managed the Obama administration’s Iran policy, was invited to take part. The teams were instead chosen from among scientists, military leaders and intelligence officials who opposed the nuclear accord with Iran.
Also attached were former administration officials hired by Exxon for their extensive knowledge of Iran’s oil trade and their close ties with oil circles in the Gulf Emirates, which like Israel, fought hard to pre-empt the nuclear deal with Iran.
Our sources have also learned that if Iran rejects the revised accord, the president elect has a list of new economic sanctions drawn up which are a lot tougher than the sanctions regime imposed by the Bush and Obama administrations.
The incoming president will have a fight on his hands to get the Tillerson appointment through the Senate in the face of objections raised by Republican lawmakers over his ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin. However, Trump hopes to turn those ties to his advantage. He trusts that Tillerson is just the man to sell the new administration’s Iran policies to the Russian president.
Read more about Trump’s plans for his secretary of state in the coming issue of DEBKA Weekly (for subscribers) out on Friday. Dec. 16, 2016.