In another instance of mixed messaging from the White House, National Security Council coordinator John Kirby on Tuesday pointed to Iran's past failure to abide by the JCPOA Nuclear Deal while underscoring the administration's commitment to reviving the same agreement. 

After 16 months of negotiations to revive the Obama- era nuclear deal, Iran this week has conceded some of its primary demands holding up talks with the Biden administration, which has made reviving the nuclear agreement a cornerstone of its foreign policy.

Kirby welcomed the progress in an interview on "The Story," Tuesday, where he was pressed on the concerns shared by Israel and surrounding Arab countries who've urged President Biden to refrain from resurrecting the agreement, warning that the U.S. funding will be used to finance Iran's terror network that will only further destabilize the region. 


 Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei

 Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei gives a live broadcast on state television on the occasion of Mawlid al-Nabi or Prophet Muhammad's (PBUH) birth anniversary in Tehran, Iran on November 03, 2020. (Photo by Iranian Leader Press Office / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images) (Getty Images)

"Our allies in Israel, they're not comfortable with it. They're the prime target. Our Arab allies also not comfortable getting back into a deal with Iran," Fox News host Martha MacCallum said. "So does this isolate us out of that equation when we’re doing something that all of those partners are not happy with?"

"Quite the contrary," Kirby responded, arguing that it was the withdrawal from the deal under former President Trump in 2018 that isolated the U.S. from its allies. When the U.S. was active in the agreement, he said, it was Iran who isolated itself by violating the same deal the White House is determined to revive.

"When we were in the deal, Iran was the one that was isolating itself by not accommodating to it, So look, we were isolating ourselves by pulling out," he said. "It was a decision that was opposed by our European allies and partners and many other countries around the world. Now we want back in the deal. We want Iran back in the deal so that we can eliminate the outcome of them having a nuclear weapon."

Kirby said while Biden "understands" the concerns of Israel and neighboring countries, he remains determined to rejoin the JCPOA and use diplomacy as a means to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear capabilities.  


President Biden speaks in front of two microphones

President Biden reiterates his commitment to rejoining the Iran Nuclear Deal. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

"Any problem in the Middle East only gets more difficult to solve when you have a nuclear-armed Iran," Kirby said."

Critics say the deal would at best only delay Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons. According to a new report from the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), Iran is poised to rake in an estimated $275 billion in the first year and balloon to an estimated $1 trillion by the early 2030s.

Kirby said the revived agreement would reinstate the "most strenuous inspection" protocols on Iranian facilities. 


"This is not about trust. It’s about verify," he said. "We can get inspectors on the ground and see what the Iranians are doing. If they cheat on the deal, we’ll know. We’ll have a lot [more] of transparency and visibility than we do right now, which is to say, we have none."

Trump pulled out of the original 2015 nuclear deal in 2018 and reimposed harsh sanctions on Iran, which responded by breaching the pact's restrictions on uranium enrichment.