Clear differences have emerged over the expectations and outcomes of the implementation of the Joint Plan of Action (JPA), both regarding the dimension of the interim agreement’s limits on Iran’s nuclear program and the efficacy of the sanctions relief. Viewed together, they provide a useful context for what the contours of any good comprehensive deal should look like.Washington has repeatedly declared that the signing of the JPA effectively closes the window on Iranian enrichment. US Secretary of State John Kerry stated: “This first step does not say that Iran has a right to enrichment. No matter what interpretive comments are made, it is not in this document. There is no right to enrich within the four corners of the NPT (Non-Proliferation Treaty).”However, less than 24 hours after the Geneva document was inked, the Iranians insisted otherwise. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and others publicly averred that dismantling their country’s nuclear infrastructure is “100%” a red line, and that “under the six-month agreement, Natanz, Fordow, Arak, Isfahan and Bandar Abbas [facilities] will all continue their activities.” The interviews were described as a “diplomatic train-wreck” by CNN host Fareed Zakaria.An analysis published this month by the US-based Institute of Science and International Security (ISIS) calculated that, in order to put its nuclear program verifiably beyond use for weaponization, Iran would minimally have to remove 15,000 centrifuges. This is something that President Rouhani has flatly rejected.Regarding the lifting of sanctions in exchange for limited Iranian nuclear concessions, the Obama administration initially claimed that the overall value of the sanctions relief would be modest – roughly $7 billion. The White House also contended that the rest of the international sanctions regime targeting Iran’s banking and oil sectors – what the White House describes as core sanctions – would remain intact.Skeptics immediately challenged both claims, arguing that the actual value of the relief is much higher and that the sanctions regime will be substantially eroded as companies and states scramble to rush back into Iranian markets. Currently, those US estimates have been revised upward to $15 billion, and many states are waiting in line to renew their economic ties with Iran.The P5+1 and Iran are slated to begin talks next week in Vienna over a final deal. Serious statesmen must now grapple with the fact that the degree of difficulty of their mission has been compounded by Iranian double-talk and limited leverage caused by the crumbling of sanctions. New threats have also emerged. In its annual Worldwide Threat Analysis, published on January 29, the US intelligence community noted that Iran could undermine the comprehensive nuclear deal by acquiring nuclear materials through clandestine channels, and that despite its repeated pledges “not to transfer nuclear materials, technology, or know-how, North Korea might again export nuclear technology.” According to David Albright, the former United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency inspector and ISIS founder and president, to reach a deal Tehran must minimally shut down its uranium enriching underground military bunker at Fordow, downgrade the reactor at its plutonium-production facility at Arak, and agree to a 20-year inspection regime. Iran would also have to ship out its entire stockpile of enriched uranium, which today is enough to produce approximately six bombs. A good deal would force Iran to comply fully with IAEA demands and six mandatory UN Security Council Resolutions – which demand Iran suspend all enrichment, reprocessing, and heavy water activity. Parchin would be placed under international scrutiny, and although there is no evidence of hidden enrichment facilities, tough consideration would be given to the likely existence of any still-undisclosed sites.In her testimony yesterday, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the interim deal is “not perfect,” but she repeatedly emphasized that this was “merely a first step” to a more comprehensive final agreement.Now to the really hard part.Mr. Raskas is a graduate student at The George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management.