Conditions within Iran prevent the Rouhani administration from working with the Trump administration to settle the nuclear issue.
Military and social accomplishments coupled with economic endurance have emboldened officials of the Islamic Republic, including IRGC commanders, who abjure any compromise with the US. They harbor ill will for past American involvement – from the 1953 reinstallation of the shah, through chemical weapons supplies to Iraq during the 1980s war, to the ongoing sanctions.
…the more Trump has clamored for a deal, the more Iranian leaders have stuck steadfastly to their preconditions of lifting sanctions, restoring the JCPOA, and even paying compensation for losses. Tehran has even countered with the possibility of “leaving the NPT [Non-Proliferation Treaty]” and enriching uranium up to 60 percent. Iran’s shopkeeper-to-customer approach to a nuclear deal may be dangerous, however. The American president’s caution should not be misunderstood as weakness. To date, Trump’s policy toward Iran has been restrained and consistent – offer rewards and impose penalties. He has punished the Islamic Republic through economic and cyber rather than military attacks – most recently by sanctioning the construction sector on October 31. But Trump is not a rejected customer who quietly leaves.