We asked BuzzFeed News’ RosieGray, who’s been reporting from the talks in Lausanne, two quick questions about the framework deal with Iran.
Why is this a big deal? What's at stake?
GRAY: There's several reasons why it's a big deal. One, if this potential deal does prevent Iran from going nuclear, then it will have resolved the single most pressing arms control issue of the modern era. If President Obama is right, the U.S. will have laid the groundwork for diffusing a 40-year enmity between the U.S. and Iran that dates back to the Islamic Revolution.
The nuclear negotiations with Iran are the Obama administration's top foreign policy priority, and this potential deal will likely be looked back on as the president's signature international accomplishment — whether it works or not. But if Obama's critics are right, and the deal does not prevent or even accelerates Iran's path to the bomb, then this could be looked back on as a mistake of historic proportions.
This framework deal with Iran, as well as U.S. cooperation withIran against ISIS on the battlefield, could also signal a new set of U.S. alliances in the Middle East. Traditional U.S. allies like Israel and Saudi Arabia are very worried about this — Israel's prime minister even told Obama on Thursday that if this framework is enacted as a final deal, it will threaten Israel's survival. The administration is walking a fine line here with its existing allies, and these negotiations are part of the reason why the U.S.-Israel relationship is in crisis.
For Iran itself, this could change everything. If there is indeed a deal and Iran complies with the restrictions, it will be relieved of the crippling sanctions that have kept it largely isolated from the world economy.
And what's expected to happen between now and June 30?
GRAY: Both Iran and the P5+1 (China, France, Russia, the U.K., and the U.S., plus Germany) will continue negotiating in the next three months. It's important to keep in mind there is no deal yet. This is merely a framework that sets the parameters of what a final deal will look like. They still have to figure out a lot of the details, and a lot of the issues still at stake could be very contentious. It's too early to say whether this deal will become a reality.