Matthew Kroenig

  • Trump Sanctions Iran’s Supreme Leader

    US President Donald J. Trump on June 24 signed an executive order that he said would place “hard-hitting” sanctions on Iran’s supreme leader.


    “The Supreme Leader of Iran is one who ultimately is responsible for the hostile conduct of the regime. He’s respected within his country.  His office oversees the regime’s most brutal instruments, including the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps,” Trump said before signing the order in the White House. “These measures represent a strong and proportionate response to Iran’s increasingly provocative actions,” he added.

    The executive order allows US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to impose sanctions on officials appointed by Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and those who provide material support to his office. “These sanctions will deny Iran’s leadership access to financial resources, blocking them from using the United States financial system or accessing any assets in the United States,” the White House said.

    However, most analysts are skeptical about the efficacy of such action.


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  • Is the Iran Nuclear Deal on Its Last Legs?

    Iran’s plans to violate a central tenet of the 2015 nuclear deal by exceeding limits placed on enriched uranium “will be the final blow to an agreement that the United States mortally wounded a year ago,” according to Barbara Slavin, director of the Atlantic Council’s Future of Iran Initiative

    The nuclear deal—formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)—was signed between Iran, the United States, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and China on July 14, 2015. The deal required Tehran to freeze aspects of its nuclear weapons program. In return, the other signatories would provide sanctions relief. On May 8, 2018, US President Donald J. Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the JCPOA over concerns that it did not do enough to stop Tehran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon or its “malign activity” in the Middle East.


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  • Kroenig Joins PRI to Discuss the Diplomacy in the Trump Administration


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  • Trump Did the Right Thing in Hanoi

    Summit with North Korea’s Kim Jung-un collapses under the weight of sanctions

    To those who have been paying attention to North Korea for years, the collapse of the second summit between US President Donald J. Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Hanoi, Vietnam, comes as no surprise.

    “This outcome is disappointing, but not surprising,” said Matthew Kroenig, deputy director for strategy in the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security.


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  • Kroenig Quoted in Foreign Policy on US Exiting INF Nuclear Treaty


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  • Kroenig Joins NPR to Discuss US-Russia Missile Building


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  • United States Suspends INF Treaty With Russia

    Decision could spark "unpredictable and unconstrained US-Russian arms race," Atlantic Council's Alexander Vershbow says.

    The US decision to suspend participation in a decades-old nuclear arms control treaty with Russia has raised the probability of a US-Russian arms race, according to Alexander Vershbow, a distinguished fellow in the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security and a former US ambassador to Russia.

    “Although the US withdrawal will not take effect for another six months, today marks the effective end of the INF Treaty, the only nuclear arms agreement to ban an entire class of missiles,” Vershbow said. “The loss of the treaty creates a real possibility of an unpredictable and unconstrained US-Russian arms race in Europe and, potentially, in Northeast Asia as well.”


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  • Trump to Meet North Korea’s Kim Jong-un Again in February

    US President Donald J. Trump will meet Kim Jong-un for a second time in late February to push the North Korean leader to take steps toward denuclearization, the White House said on January 18. It did not announce a location. The two leaders last met in Singapore on June 12, 2018. That was the first meeting between a leader of North Korea and a sitting US president.


    Is a second summit a good idea?


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  • Kroenig in The Federalist: Trump’s Not Kidding When He Promises ‘Cutting-Edge’ Missile Defense


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  • Two Years of Trump: Key Moments in Foreign Policy

    January 20 marks two years since US President Donald J. Trump took office. We take a look back at some of the big foreign policy headlines made by the president and his administration over these past two years.


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