EP 308: Amb. Wendy Sherman on Negotiating Nukes w/ Iran & North Korea
Ambassador Wendy Sherman was the lead negotiator on the Iran Nuclear Agreement, and she writes about it in her new book titled Not for the Faint of Heart: Lessons in Courage, Power, and Persistence. Today she recalls working with Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to halt North Korea’s nuclear ambitions in the 90’s, and how they came close to an agreement only to see their efforts derailed by the chaos of the 2000 election. She explains why negotiating with North Korea is always "one part diplomacy and one part absurdity," she recalls her personal interactions with Kim Jung Il, and weighs in on how his successor Kim Jung Un measures up. Ambassador Sherman talks about the many months of diplomacy (both covert and overt) that went into the nuclear agreement with Iran, how much was lost when President Trump decertified the deal, and what her colleagues from across the negotiating table are saying about it. She explains why the negotiation was a lot like solving a Rubik’s Cube, just how heated things got in the behind closed doors, and why sometimes tactics are no substitute for pure raw human emotion.