Tag Archives: nuclear weapons

Does Iran Have IT Or Not Have IT?

It increasingly has become a given that Iran is on the road to developing an atomic bomb and once it attains that goal the safety of the world is imperiled. The Iran government on Monday dismissed American concerns about how much fissile material the country has produced saying it isn’t developing a nuclear bomb and that any effort to make weapons-grade uranium would be difficult under the eyes of international inspectors. These comments came a day after US Chief of Staff, Admiral MIke Mullen said Iran has sufficient fissile material for a nuclear weapon and warned the world was under threat if that became a reality. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Hasan Qashqavi told reporters, “we have said many times that a nuclear weapon has no place in Iran”s defense doctrine.” He asked reporters, “how is it possible for uranium enriched 3 to 4 percent to be enriched up to 90 percent while under IAEA monitoring?”

Iran’s possession of an atomic bomb does not foster stability in the Middle East, but that does not translate into becoming a threat to the world. First, why would Iran attack Europe or the United States knowing full well their country would be obliterated from the face of the Earth by making a nuclear attack? Second, is the assumption of Western observers the leaders of Iran are complete fools? There is a world of difference between creating tension and posing a threat to the world. It is time for calm behavior and to cease exaggerating the problem of Iran and nuclear weapons.

Israel Threatens Action On Iran

News that Iran is progressing in its development of atomic energy has sent a shock wave of fear throughout the Israel military establishment. Defense Minister Ehud Barak warned that Israel could not by idly while Iran developed nuclear weapons. “Israel’s policy is clear: We are not ruling out any option regarding the Iranian nuclear program.” He sent a thinly clad warning to President Obama that “we recommend that others don’t rule out any option either.” Barak insisted that “time is running out” and there is need to act before time ran out and Iran had an atomic weapon.

Israeli leaders insist that something must “be done” to halt or to end the Iranian nuclear development program. Let’s assume that Israel did bomb Iranian nuclear facilities. The result, most probably, would be launching of dozens, if not hundreds of suicide bombers in Israel which would then end any hope for peace between Palestinians and Israel. Of course, Iran would continue developing nuclear energy and would hide their work and wait for time. Making threats about bombing Iran satisfies the emotional needs of Israelis, but does it also solve any problems?

Iran has indicated to Turkey it is ready to negotiate. Let the talks begin and put aside talk of war, war.

Iran Urges Obama To Take New Approach

The Iranian government has asked Barack Obama not to adhere to the failed policies of Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld which was to believe only the worst about their government and to resort to military force. In 2001, when US forces invaded Afghanistan, the Khatami government of Iran provided assistance in order to help get rid of its Taliban enemy, but while accepting the aid, George Bush refused to reach out to Iran and build friendly relations. The Foreign Ministry of Iran promised to respond in an “appropriate and timely”way to any change in American behavior toward their nation. Hassan Qashqavi said: “We have to see whether or not this change in orientation (by Obama) is in practice and whether it will bring about fundamental change in the behavior and stance of America in relation to Iran.”

There are reports Obama is ready to engage in dialogue with Iran and to open new possibilities for change. It is time for a change.

North Korea Wants Out Of Nuclear Agreement!

The North Korean government said it will halt efforts to disable it nuclear facilities and consider restoring the Yongbyon reactor that can make material for atomic bombs. It charges the United States with violating a disarmament deal. “We have decided to immediately suspend disabling our nuclear facilities,” the KCNA news agency quoted a foreign ministry official as saying. According to Lee Dong-bok, of the CSIS think tank, “this is a last-ditch effort trying to somehow influence U.S. presidential politics.” The announcement came days after China’s President Hu Jintao left South Korea where he promised to get tough with the North if it did not move toward giving up its nuclear weapons.

As usual, President Bush’s “get tough policy” of threatening other nations unless they fulfill his requirements played a role in the North Korean decision. Instead of offering support and encouragement to North Korea for its actions in working toward nuclear disarmament, he made clear that nation’s name would not be removed from the list of terrorist enemies. Professor Koh Yu-hwan, of Seoul’s Dongguk University believes it is “another card at the negotiation table to urge the U.S. to remove it from the terrorism blacklist as soon as possible.” The Chinese Foreign Ministry urged nations to remain calm and continue effort to work for nuclear disarmament.

In June, North Korea toppled the cooling tower at its plutonium producing reactor in a symbolic gesture to show its commitment to the nuclear deal. The Bush reaction was not to respond with a symbolic gesture such as removing North Korea from the terrorist list. Instead, he made known the U.S. would play tough. Isn’t this always the Bush approach?

Israel Defense Minister Warns of Action Against Iran

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak warned the world his nation is prepared to take any necessary action in order to ensure that Iran does not obtain nuclear weapons. Barak told an Italian newspaper that a nuclear Iran would be “dangerous to world order” and he emphasized all options for dealing with a nuclear Iran were on the table and could be used. However, he did emphasize the importance of “accelerating economic sanctions against Iran” as a primary weapon to deal with nuclear development in that country. “Either way, we need to keep very option open. If they provoke us, or they attack us, our army is prepared to attack and to succeed uncompromisingly.”

There is no question those in charge of Iran are deliberately challenging leading nations of the world by refusing to accede to requests to focus on peaceful uses of nuclear development and to end military considerations. However, attacking Iran is also a foolhardy approach that will only lead to devastation in the region. The path of economic pressure must be pursued even though it takes time and does not appear to be the macho approach to dealing with Iranian leaders. In many respects, President Ahmadinejad is the type of leader who wants military action so he can pose as a courageous leader.

Kuwait Leader Blasts US Over Iran Policy

Kuwait’s Speaker of the National Assembly, Jassem Ai Khorafi, accused the United States of deliberately attempting to provoke a conflict with Iran and made clear his nation would not allow its territory to be used in such a venture. “What is happening is that there are provocative Western statements, and Iran responds in the same way. Such a sensitive issue requires the language of dialogue, not escalation… It is necessary to respect Iran’s sovereignty because a resolution will not be reached by treating it like a US state.” Khorafi said the West was using double standards in the dispute by trying to halt Iran’s nuclear program while saying nothing about the nuclear program of Israel or dealing with that nation’s nuclear weapons.

The Speaker pointed out although Bush constantly emphasizes his commitment to peace, he also threatens Iran by sending warships into areas near its coastal region. The Kuwait leader is correct in emphasizing the importance of toning down threats and working in a peaceful manner through use of diplomatic contacts in resolving regional issues.

North Korea Will No Longer Be A Terrorist Nation

In the heady days of the early Bush administration when Republicans insisted they would never negotiate with any “terrorist” nation, North Korea was cited as an example of how the weak policies of the Clinton years must be replaced with tough minded George Bush. Of course, somewhere along the way, Bush decided to embrace negotiations with terrorist nations and, voila, the world now sees an end to nuclear weapon development in North Korea. Six nations signed an agreement with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea under which the “terrorist” nation has agreed to dismantle the last remaining parts of its nuclear weapon program. A team of experts will visit North Korea to verify completion of this task.

Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill, who has been working on this issue, noted, “we would like the protocol to be reached within 45 days and secondly to begin verification within 45 days. We’re anticipating that and don’t see any obstacles.”

One can only wonder if George Bush will not support the candidacy of Barack Obama who agrees America must negotiate with terrorist nations.

Iran Will Accept West Offer On Uranium Enrichment

There are unconfirmed reports Iran has agreed to halt its uranium enrichment program in exchange for Western economic cooperation. Iran will place on freeze on further work in the area of possible development of nuclear weapons. The Iranian government is responding to a western proposal which offered ending economic sanctions and other incentives for an Iranian agreement. However, the American government is supposedly concerned that Israel might do something foolish such as attack Iranian nuclear facilities, an action that would doom negotiations with Iran.

Admiral Mullen has urged Israel not to do anything that would further destabilize the region. Hopefully, wise heads will listen to this sound advice.

US Intends To Strike N. Korea From Terrorist Nation List

The United States government has informed Japan it intends to strike the name of North Korea from its list of nations that support terrorism provided North Koreans file a statement describing its nuclear facilities and activities. The government of Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda is pleased and not pleased with the American decision. Japan has been insisting that North Korea must provide information concerning Japanese citizens who were abducted and brought to North Korea, but there has not been adequate response to Japanese requests for information.

Prime Minister Fukuda is in a difficult position, as he noted to the press, “if the nuclear problem will be resolved, isn’t that something desirable also for our country? It’s something we should welcome.” But, accepting the North Koreans without obtaining information about the kidnapped Japanese citizens is a political hot potato.

The decision by America to go it alone on this issue simply makes it more likely Japan will find its own foreign policy for Asia and cease always trailing behind that of America.

In 2001, upon assuming office, President Bush made it clear he would not follow the ideas of Bill Clinton who negotiated with North Korea. Early this year, Bush told the Israel parliament, it was appeasement to negotiate with terrorist nations. How times have changed.

Israel Claims Iran Has Secret Nuclear Program

Israel defense Minister Ehud Barak insisted Iran has a secret nuclear weapon development program and e suspects it is already working on warheads for ground-to-ground missiles. “The Iranians are aiming at nuclear weapons,” he asserted, even though “they may have slowed down the weapons development in 2003″ out of fear of an American attack. Barak insists Iran is further down the line of nuclear weapons than anyone realizes. He fears “we will wind up in 10 or 15 years with a nuclear device in the hands of terrorists.” He wants the international community to dig further into this problem.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Manoucher Mottaki made clear yesterday “Iran is not threatening Israel and does not want nuclear weapons.” He pointed out Iran refused to recognize South Africa until their apartheid program ended and as far as Israel is concerned, “there is no reason why relations with that oountry cannot change to.” There was nothing in the Iranian foreign minister’s statement suggesting his nation did not believe Israel had a right to exist. This attitude is far different from extremists like Hamas, but Israel continues believing the worse about Iran despite evidence there is no nuclear weapon program.