One of a series of RAND perspectives on what the Middle East and U.S. policy might look like in "the days after a deal", this perspective begins by positing that a final nuclear agreement is reached between the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) and Iran and then examines the potential responses of two of the most important U.S. partners in the region: Israel and Saudi Arabia. The authors argue that because each partner's concerns about Iran run deeper than Tehran's nuclear program, both Israel and Saudi Arabia are not likely to welcome a final agreement. On the other hand, the authors do not anticipate that Israel and Saudi Arabia will adopt their most aggressive counters to the implementation of the final agreement: for Israel a military strike on Iranian nuclear infrastructure and for Saudi Arabia acquisition of its own nuclear deterrent. Furthermore, the authors present a range of measures the United States could employ to address the concerns of its partners and prevent destabilizing actions.
This report results from the RAND Corporation's Investment in People and Ideas program. The research was conducted jointly within the International Security and Defense Policy Center of the RAND National Security Research Division and the Center for Middle East Public Policy (CMEPP), part of International Programs at the RAND Corporation.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation Perspective series. RAND Perspectives present expert insights on timely policy issues. All RAND Perspectives undergo peer review to ensure high standards for quality and objectivity.
Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.