The stage is set for a showdown with Iran. The latest news is that president trump has not acknowledged that Iran is keeping its end of the bargain as far as the nuclear agreement is concerned. Earlier the CIA director Michael Pompeo in an address to the University of Texas at Austin accused the Iran government of being a terrorist and totalitarian state that was fomenting terror in the Middle East. He also referred to the Iranian Republican Guard as a terrorist organisation.

After this speech and a study of Trump's views on the Iran Nuclear deal, it was always on the cards that at some stage, he would decertify that Iran was complying with the nuclear deal.

He had all along called the nuclear deal flawed and had said that he would scrap it. The president has not scrapped the deal but has refused to certify that Iran is keeping its part of the nuclear agreement.

He has now passed the buck to Congress which will have 60 days to decide further course of action. The Republican Guard is not declared a terror group. This shows that Trump is ready to strike but not wound Iran - as reported by Fox News.

Hostage crisis

Iran for decades since the revolution of 1979 has been in the crosshairs of the US administrations right from the time of Jimmy Carter. During his tenure, the Iranian revolutionary guards took hundreds of US diplomatic personnel as hostages.

An attempt to rescue the hostages failed and made the USA a laughing stock around the world. Ultimately millions had to be paid in ransom to get the hostages back.

Iran nuclear program

Iran started a nuclear program which the US and its allies wanted to stop and this was the genesis of the nuclear agreement. The deal was crafted by Obama but Trump was always against it.

He wanted to scrap the deal but the almost universal opposition of the allies to scrapping the nuclear deal with Iran deterred him. This is the reason the president has chosen a middle path, as he has not scrapped the deal with Iran but has asked Congress to examine the issue. This is a bit of a surprise as the president could have by an executive action reimposed the sanctions.

Why did he pass the buck to Congress?

The situation in the Middle East is hotting up but Iran has the backing of Russia and China. It will be interesting to watch what Trump will do in case Iran again starts developing nuclear weapons - as it has threatened to do in case the deal is scrapped.

The nuclear agreement

Most likely at some stage, the deal with Iran will collapse as Trump continues his role as president. It will be interesting to watch how things pan out in the days to come. One hopes Trump has done his homework as the Iranians are shrewd and have the backing of almost all the signatories of the Iran nuclear accord.