Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu understands the power of framing a story. On April 29, he gave a televised presentation and revealed, in dramatic fashion, the existence of an alleged archive of documents, drawings and photographs that proved Iran once had a program dedicated to the acquisition of a nuclear weapon, contrary to public claims that senior Iranian officials made in the past.
The relevance of Netanyahu’s message is up for debate. Most observers acknowledge the exposé may prove embarrassing to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran, which together certified in December 2015 that all issues pertaining to the so-called “possible military dimensions” of the Iranian nuclear program had been resolved. But there is unanimous agreement that nothing in Netanyahu’s presentation shows Iran is operating in violation of its commitments under the agreement reached with the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, Germany and the European Union regarding its ongoing nuclear activities (formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Program of Action, or JCPOA.)