"Weakened at home, diminished in the region, and isolated in the world -- this is the dramatic shift in Iran's fortunes that has occurred over the past three years," Donilon said in remarks prepared for delivery at the Brookings Institution in Washington. "In this sense, we have succeeded in changing the dynamic that was at work when President Obama took office."
The remarks followed Monday's imposition by the United States and Britain of sanctions against Iran's petrochemical industry and the isolation of its banking sector, what he called "effective" and "pragmatic" actions to slow Tehran's effort to develop nuclear weapons. The sanctions followed a report last week by the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency, saying it could not guarantee Iran's nuclear program was for civilian purposes only.
Donilon said there is no question Iran must be prevented from developing nuclear weapons. He said actions taken so far against Iran have made it more difficult for Iran to proceed and more expensive.
"Even as Tehran continues to engage in dangerous and destabilizing behavior, Iran today is fundamentally weaker, more isolated, more vulnerable and badly discredited than ever," he said. "On the contrary, compared to when President Obama took office, Iran is greatly diminished -- at home, in the region and around the world."