While we can all breathe a collective sigh of relief that the nightmare for five Americans is over and they are now out of Iranian custody, the White House's decision to yield to the demands of a state sponsor of terrorism is cause for deep concern on several fronts.
For one, we've released seven convicted Iranian sanctions busters and financial criminals, and expunged international arrest warrants against an additional 14, in exchange for innocent Americans who should have never been incarcerated.
Moreover, this capitulation will likely encourage
All of this points to a worrying trend: America itself looks to be held hostage by the nuclear deal. The White House is willing to bend over backwards to keep the weapons agreement on track.
President Obama's foreign policy legacy is inextricably tied to implementing the nuclear deal and fulfilling the promise of détente with Tehran. This gives the Iranian axis an alarming degree of leverage over him for the next year.
There will invariably be those who argue that yielding to Iran's demands was the only way to secure the release of our countrymen. Similarly, White House supporters over the summer argued there was no alternative to the nuclear deal.
Then, as now, there was a better option: refusing to reward Iran for rogue behavior.