Abstract: Donald Trump has exited the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and threatened Iran with economic warfare – the ultimate goal is regime change. Iran is still adhering to the JCPOA, their goal is increased trade with the European Union (EU). Belatedly the European Union is trying to save the JCPOA by protecting its trade with Iran despite American sanctions. As the EU is one of the main architects of this non-proliferation victory, maintaining it is crucial for its credibility. This is of about the EU’s strategic autonomy, its ability to conduct an independent foreign policy. Domestic Iranian political developments will be set back by the United States sanctions and the pressure on other countries to follow suit. But this will hurt the population more than the political elite.