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The past few weeks have seen some pretty interesting developments in a realm not many people usually think too much about, but one that affects all of us: nuclear weapons, and the control of their proliferation.

Specifically, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) learned that Iran had been building a covert uranium enrichment facility near Qom. Regardless of what President Ahmadinejad and others have said, it is absolutely unambiguous that Iran violated its IAEA safeguards by building such a facility; I described these violations quite clearly here. Not to put too fine a point on it, as the Director General of the IAEA, Mohammed ElBaradei said, they broke the law:

"Iran has been on the wrong side of the law in so far as to inform the agency at an earlier date," ElBaradei told CNN's sister station in India, CNN-IBN. "Iran was supposed to inform us on the day it was decided to construct the facility. They have not done that."

So, it was with this new and rather interesting information in hand that the five permanent members of the UN Security Council (United States, China, Russia, France, and the UK) plus Germany sat down with Iranian officials in Geneva on October 1, 2009.

What came out of that meeting was an agreement that has the potential to really make a difference, if all parties involved do what they say they will do.

The Agreement

The Tehran Nuclear Research Center includes the Tehran Research Reactor (TRR), a small light-water reactor that produces radioisotopes for medical use.

According to the US State Department background briefing on the Geneva talks:

... we discussed the question of the Tehran research reactor. And maybe a little background would be helpful. This is a research reactor which has been in operation in Tehran for decades, producing medical isotopes under strict IAEA safeguards. The last supply of fuel for this reactor, which is at roughly 19.75 percent LEU [low-enriched uranium], was supplied by the Argentine government in the early 1990s and it’s going to run out in roughly the next year, year and a half.

Iran came to the IAEA a few months ago with the request to replace this supply. The IAEA consulted us and some others, some other members, and to make a long story short the United States and Russia joined together in a proposal to the IAEA which the IAEA subsequently conveyed as a response to the Iranians, to use Iran’s own LEU stockpile as the basis, as the feedstock for the reactor fuel that’s required.

The plan involves taking the LEU (which is enriched to about 3.5%), sending it to Russia to be enriched to 19.75%, then fabricating it into fuel assemblies to be used in the reactor, which is under IAEA safeguards. The Russians have confirmed they will do the enrichment; the French will fabricate the fuel assemblies.

Under the proposal, approximately 75% of Iran's LEU would be removed, which is approximately 1,200 kg. It would be out of the country for a year or so before it would be ready for use in the TRR.

Possible benefits of the agreement

The obvious benefit is that the LEU could no longer be enriched to the point that it could be used to make nuclear weapons, making it far more difficult to achieve nuclear breakout, even with the relatively small amount of LEU that would be left in the country (click here for breakout calculation scenarios, courtesy of the Federation of American Scientists).

Greg Thielmann is a Senior Fellow with the Arms Control Association, and has extensive experience in the area of threat assessment, nuclear proliferation, and other such issues. I asked him what he thought; he told me:

It seems to me that this is an astounding development. For one thing, what I'm really thinking about is the effect on kind of worst-case assumptions about Iranian breakout capabilities, and this arrangement -- and obviously, it only happens when it happens -- the outline of this arrangement would seem to inherently push back worst-case time lines here, because you're taking the various ingredients away that a lot of those worst-case scenarios depend on in order to arrive at their bad outcome.

The larger picture, at least according to the State Department brief, is "confidence-building":

So again, at least in our view, the research reactor proposal made by the IAEA would be a positive interim step to help build confidence so that we’d have more diplomatic space to pursue Iran’s compliance with its obligations under the Security Council Resolutions, the NPT and the IAEA, and to tackle the more fundamental question of Iran’s nuclear program.



Possible risks

By all accounts, Iran has agreed "in principle" to the proposal, and the details will be hammered out in Vienna on October 19, 2009 (and probably discussed during ElBaradei's Tehran visit this weekend).

I asked Thielmann if he thought the Iranians would follow through with their end of the agreement, or if they might back out. I argued that since they were basically backed into a corner going into this meeting, they might have agreed simply to relieve the pressure. He said:

They clearly were under a lot of pressure here, and when they're less behind the eight ball, then there may be opportunities to delay or change the terms and so forth, so I remind myself of that and try not to get to optimistic about that, but you know, some of these things are a little bit hard to get out of. I mean, they've said some unequivocal things, they have Mohammad ElBaradei coming to Tehran to work out the details -- it looks to me that a lot of this is the real deal.

The arrangement with Russia seems like something the Iranians are not going to want to completely let fall through the cracks, particularly since it seems like this is actually taking care of an impending problem that they had. They actually do produce medical isotopes at this research reactor, and it is running out of fuel, so this is not just hanging out there, it's actually giving something to Iran that they want, so I don't think that they would just necessarily see this as being totally a favor to the international community.

Another question I had was whether the light-water reactor itself was a proliferation risk, especially since that reactor was associated with small-scale plutonium isolation experiments. I asked Jacqueline Shire of the Institute for Science and International Security about this. She replied:

Yes - fuel rods are relatively proliferation-proof, especially if they have not been in the reactor for long (plutonium builds up with operation). North Korea took out the fuel rods and reprocessed for the plutonium but their reactor was graphite-moderated - so [there was] lots of plutonium.

Working with fuel rods is messy stuff - they also have to cool for a time before they can be chemically dissolved and the fuel extracted. Also the TRR runs on relatively small quantities of fuel - so in all, with safeguards, not a significant proliferation risk.

I don't think the Pu experiments are cause for concern... they were very lab-scale.

Geoffrey Forden has posted an excellent primer on Iran's TRR plans over at Arms Control Wonk; I recommend that you read it. In his post, he also emphasizes that any amount of plutonium produced would be in such tiny amounts as to not be a cause for concern.

What's next?

As I mentioned above, Iranian officials will meet with US, French, and Russian officials in Vienna on October 19 to discuss details of the TRR deal.

Also, ElBaradei's trip to Tehran this weekend has resulted in setting a date for IAEA inspection of the enrichment facility near Qom. The inspections will take place on October 25 of this year, which is has been criticized by some experts as not being soon enough.

However, ElBaradei feels that "... we are shifting gears from confrontation into transparency and cooperation," which is a view also shared by US National Security Adviser Jim Jones. He thinks that the TRR deal, as well as setting a date for a Qom inspection indicates:

We now have an Iran that is willing to come to the table. We have two more meetings scheduled, one in which they will announce the -- they will allow the inspectors to visit the Qom site which has just been recently announced and the other one to discuss methodology by which we can ship flow and rich uranium out of the country.

Those two things alone move the dial in our direction favorably. And the issue of proliferation is one that really keeps us up at night and should keep us up at night whether it's North Korea or Iran and on both fronts, we're seeing some positive movement in the positive direction.

As Greg Thielmann told me, the operative term for him was "cautiously optimistic". That's probably a pretty good assessment at this point.

Finally, I'd like to leave you with a quote from President Obama regarding the outcome of the Geneva meeting. He's looking at the big picture:

This is a constructive beginning, but hard work lies ahead.  We’ve entered a phase of intensive international negotiations.  And talk is no substitute for action.  Pledges of cooperation must be fulfilled.  We have made it clear that we will do our part to engage the Iranian government on the basis of mutual interests and mutual respect, but our patience is not unlimited.

This is not about singling out Iran... This is about the global non-proliferation regime, and Iran’s right to peaceful nuclear energy, just as all nations have it -- but with that right, comes responsibilities.

The burden of meeting these responsibilities lies with the Iranian government, and they are now the ones that need to make that choice.

It is no small thing to have the power of the atom in your hands. There are international laws by which each nation that is party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty must abide, and Iran is no exception.

Note: Please click here for a background piece on Iran's nuclear program.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 06:58 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I really appreciate the effort it takes to (16+ / 0-)

    write these diaries. I know this subject has opened you up to attack by a number of commenters but I feel you've done an excellent job of presenting the facts in a non-biased manner, and this diary is no exception.

    Thank you.

    •  Thanks! It's nice to get good feedback. (18+ / 0-)

      I hope "cautious optimism" is warranted here. I think it is.

      I know I linked to it in the post, but I'd like to emphasize again that everyone should check out Geoffrey Forden's post at armscontrolwonk.com -- it has so many reasons why Iran could benefit from this deal. It would save them money, among other things.

      Check it out.

      Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

      by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:04:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No matter what concessions Iran makes, their (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      divineorder
      will be more demanded. The Congress Critters already want to spend all of next week[Nothing better to do]and pass a slew of sanctions against Iran. I guess these are pre-emptive sanctions. How in the fuk will this give Iran a graceful way to accept terms even if they wanted to. Iran does have the right to the Full Nuclear Fuel Cycle and of course all five[+ Israel] of the Nuclear Armed countries were supposed to Reduce Their Nuclear Arsenals. I mean it's only been 40 something years and have their been in reductions in Total Destructive Capabilities ? One, One nuclear armed submarine can obliterate an entire continent and their are 100s roaming the seas. First Iran must disavow the Fuel Cycle and who disagrees that next their Missles Must Be Disarmed and or not allowed to have a range of over five miles..All this sounds familiar of course and thier can be no doubt that Israel will take out the Iranian nuclear facilities whenever they choose. More death more destruvtion more pain more suffering and sky high Oil Prices. Sanctions only hurt the common people, the peasnants. Starve out the brown-non christian people of the world. Only the names change as we flounder around the Mid East and Afghanistan. How in the fuk are we paying for this as we whine and cry about Social Security and Medicaire going broke..WTF Am done

      "Course I'm respectable. I'm old. Politicians, ugly buildings, and whores all get respectable if they last long enough."

      by LakePipes on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:13:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Your characterization of what's happened ... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dems2004, divineorder, dansmith17, ramara

        ...under the NPT is certainly true. The only big cheer to be had on that score is that South Africa gave up is nukes after apartheid was demolished.

        While the U.S. and Russia have agreed to dismantle thousands of their warheads, the queue for actually carrying out this work is now 15 years long. Both nations have far more than they had when the NPT was drafted and ratified by the original signatories.

        But, good news of a sort: It's not the case that there are hundreds of nuclear-armed submarines. The U.S. has 14. The Russians have 15. The French have 4. The Chinese have 3. The British have 4.

        Science is just a theory.

        by Meteor Blades on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:40:21 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  What a difference a Democrat makes. Barack Obama (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          brooklynbadboy, cheforacle

          President of the United States, Citizen of the Earth, I salute you. And while I am at it, Iran.  Congress, not so much.

          I quit teaching high school in Austin in 1986 for a few years and  to promote Soviet American Exchange Projects and economic conversion, to in some small way make a difference for humanity. A child the of duck and cover era, I found myself in tears numerous times when I was in Russia, Ukraine, Estonia, Siberia. I had been programmed to fear those people who I soon discovered that I had so much in common with.

          I was so elated when the agreements were signed under Gorbachev and later. So disappointing that we still have so far to go to reach the goals of disarming the nuclear overkill in both Russia and the US.

          Encouraged that now at least we have a President who gives non proliferation the priority it deserves. In this area he is indeed, the change we can believe in.

          Thank you, Plutonium Page, for your time and effort in this area. I well know from experience that most Americans are into psychic numbing on this most important topics.  As we said back in the day, one nuclear bomb could ruin your whole day.

          (Meteor Blades, you are some kind of damn informed intellectual.  Is there some topic that you are not conversant on?)

          Still time to Take action in support of single payer today Physicians for A National Health Plan www pnhp com

          by divineorder on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 09:14:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  You write "thier(sic) can be no doubt that Israel (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ohiobama, charliehall

        will take out the Iranian nuclear facilities whenever they choose."  How do you know?  Are you Nostradamus?  Perhaps the stepped-up diplomatic efforts are intended to preclude that?  I don't know but I see you are unhindered in speculating.

  •  Maybe the conclusion should read (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder, soms, Dr Marcos

    There are international laws by which each nation (that signed on to the IAEA) must abide, and Iran is no exception.

    This country has come to feel the same when Congress is in session as when the baby gets hold of a hammer. -Will Rogers

    by Lefty Coaster on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:04:08 PM PDT

    •  Well (5+ / 0-)

      If you click the link, that's what it says ;-)

      Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

      by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:04:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Except that Iran has not violated any IAEA (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MPociask, Dr Marcos

        agreements. Unless you have have evidence that the still under construction facility is closer than 180 days from receiving its first nuclear materials.

        cheers,

        Mitch Gore

        January 20, 2009... the end of an error.

        by Lestatdelc on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:13:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes they did (6+ / 0-)

          It's a good idea to read James Acton's piece :-)

          Go for it, it's really interesting and quite educational.

          Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

          by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:18:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  If I have to read that Acton's filth again (0+ / 0-)

            Acton's piece, which you so consistently parrot, is a typical case of American pettiness. Even this famous clause 3.1 is in place to ensure inspection can be in place before the introduction of nuclear material.

            There will be inspection because the introduction of nuclear material.

            1It became clear that this requirement did not provide the IAEA with sufficient time to plan and prepare for safeguards. So, in the early 1990s the IAEA modified Code 3.1. The new version requires states to report on a new facility as soon as the decision to construct it is taken. [Emphasis added]

            You want to make real Anti-Nuclear Weapons/Anti-War points Page? Why don't you talk Israel, that has a secret nuclear weapons programme in Dimona never allowed inspectors in and hasn't signed the NPT.

            But I reckon with drivel like this, you are only one of those faux-anti proliferation types that seem to infect so much of America.

            So I dare you next diary you write about Nuclear Weapons why don't you aim at a country which actually has nuclear weapons, and not a country in which you're words merely add to the drumbeat towards war.

             

             

            "You show me a capitalist, and I'll show you a bloodsucker." - Malcolm X

            by Dr Marcos on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:41:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Acton's British (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dems2004, cheforacle, Escamillo

              Just FYI.

              And drivel? My goodness, that's a rather, um, interesting assessment of someone who's considered one of the top analysts in the field.

              You're clearly unable to address the issue in a way that is free of insults and uninformed commentary.

              Have a good evening.

              Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

              by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:47:08 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I don't care is he is from Neptune 6 (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MPociask

                He works for the Carnegie Endowment. As Philip Weiss wrote in the New York Observer about that particular think tank.

                "(Anton Lievan) had to parachute out of Carnegie when they didn't want to hear what he had to say about Israel"

                And Anton Lievan is not what you would call in any way Anti- any war.

                You want to source you're material from a think tank like Carnegie with there radical agenda be my guest. But don't expect it not to be called out in Anti War circles.  

                "You show me a capitalist, and I'll show you a bloodsucker." - Malcolm X

                by Dr Marcos on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:59:56 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  I have read it (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MPociask

            And they didn't Show me evidence they are closer than 180 days form receiving fissile nuclear material.

            Acton's piece gloss over that crucial point that Iran never ratified the modified 3.1 agreement.

            cheers,

            Mitch Gore

            January 20, 2009... the end of an error.

            by Lestatdelc on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:43:20 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  This is glossing over? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              divineorder, Escamillo

              These details are included in much more complex Subsidiary Arrangements, which do not require ratification by national legislatures.

              The Subsidiary Arrangements specify when a state must report a new facility to the IAEA. "Code 3.1" of the 1976 version of the Subsidiary Arrangements requires states to report on new facilities “normally no later than 180 days before the facility is scheduled to receive nuclear material for the first time.”

              It became clear that this requirement did not provide the IAEA with sufficient time to plan and prepare for safeguards. So, in the early 1990s the IAEA modified Code 3.1. The new version requires states to report on a new facility as soon as the decision to construct it is taken.

              In February 2003, shortly after its original clandestine centrifuge plant—the one at Natanz—was discovered, Iran agreed to the modified Code 3.1.[2] As is usual, this was accomplished by an exchange of letters.

              •  Yes it is (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MPociask

                Because Iran NEVER signed the modified 3.1 agreement. Iran never ratified the 2003 modified 3.1 agreement. They said they would voluntary abide by it pending a ratification vote by the Majlis, or Iranian parliament. In October 2005, they rejected it and hence, Iran never ratified the 3.1 agreement.

                Kind of a major point not mentioned don't you think?

                cheers,

                Mitch Gore

                January 20, 2009... the end of an error.

                by Lestatdelc on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:52:33 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I'm tired of pasting large chucks... (0+ / 0-)

                  ... of what was written in the Acton article. Article 39 doesn't let Iran unilaterally change the deal.

                  •  Iran NEVER signed the modified 3.1 agreement (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    divineorder, MPociask

                    There was never a signed agreement. Again, Iran never ratified the 2003 modified 3.1 agreement. They said they would voluntary abide by it pending a ratification vote by the Majlis, or Iranian parliament. In October 2005, they rejected it and hence, Iran never ratified the 3.1 agreement.

                    It is no different legally than Clinton initialing Kyoto and then the Senate voting down ratification. Hence the U.S. never agreed to, via ratification of Kyoto.

                    cheers,

                    Mitch Gore

                    January 20, 2009... the end of an error.

                    by Lestatdelc on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:59:59 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

    •  p.s. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dems2004, Lefty Coaster, divineorder, soms

      I did update for clarity. Hope that works better.

      Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

      by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:06:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  A Light water reactor (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder, charliehall
    Assuming
    this wiki  is correct can't be used to produce plutonium for that you need a heavy water reactor.
  •  Wing-Nut's greatest fear is Obama uses executive (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder
    powers George Bush created.  
  •  This is all well and good... (8+ / 0-)

    but why does any of this small-potatoes "diplomacy" matter if Obama can't bring the Olympics to Chicago.

    /snark.

    It's good to see that the administration isn't following the Bush "issue publicly humiliating ultimatums like a petulant child all the time" approach to international diplomacy.

  •  Ahmadinejad... (6+ / 0-)

    doesn't have any control – direct or otherwise – over Iran's nuclear program, does he?

    The Supreme Leader controls all of that, correct?

    •  You know, that's a good question (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Trix, Dems2004, shpilk, divineorder, soms

      I would assume that's the case, but I don't know. He's certainly the mouthpiece.

      Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

      by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:11:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The Revolutionary Guard ... (6+ / 0-)

      ...is said to be gaining considerable de facto authority in this sphere. Ahmadinejad is alternately said to have special clout with the RG or it is said to have special clout with him. On paper, however, the Supreme Leader has full authority in this matter.

      Science is just a theory.

      by Meteor Blades on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:24:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I Believe Ahmedinejad Is Limited To Lethal Acts (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      divineorder
      And tantrums directed against his enemies list but not in a nuclear way. There's probably an invisible line drawn somewhere behind the scenes which he's not allowed to cross. Bush erased ours; which made everybody justifiably much more nervous than was healthy.
      Rolling back from the brink of macho mania would be the better play. And if all the super powers aligned to invite Iran to calm down, they just might do it.

      Lies at the top cause murder and misery at the bottom. Freedom should be a universal birthright. So many lives end like Neda Agha Soltan.

      by renzo capetti on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:38:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think you have to ask, 'Why did Iran break the (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Trix, divineorder, MPociask

    law by not making public their intent to build such a facility?'

    I think the answer is pretty obvious - they figured if they did, they either would have been unable to build it at all, or it would have been bombed out of existence by Israel or the US before it was complete.

    So they waited, and presented the IAEA with a fait accompli once they had it built and well-protected.

    Sounds like the smart thing to do when other countries are continuously belligerent to your goals, whether those goals are weapons or merely energy.

    Those who labour in the earth are the chosen people of God. - Thomas Jefferson

    by Ezekial 23 20 on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:08:21 PM PDT

    •  They didn't break the law (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MPociask

      cheers,

      Mitch Gore

      January 20, 2009... the end of an error.

      by Lestatdelc on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:14:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hi there (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cheforacle, divineorder, soms, charliehall

        There is consensus that they did. Unless you think ElBaradei is wrong.

        Think about it, read my whole piece, let me know what you think about the TRR deal.

        Thanks!

        Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

        by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:17:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  They most certainly did break the law (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          divineorder, Dr Marcos

          But...what law? International law? A treaty? With infidels?

          I mean...who really cares if they broke an international law? Neocons can't care; they don't believe in international law any more than terrorists do.

          It's beside the point. The law is impotent without teeth. No international law has any, aside from the threat of economic sanctions.

          Iran HAS nukes. Iran CAN'T USE nukes offensively without being NUKED itself. And they know that, only too well.

          "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

          by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:30:29 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Iran does not have nuclear weapons. (4+ / 0-)

            Not yet.

            I'm not sure where you got that idea.

            Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

            by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:34:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Where I got that idea (0+ / 0-)

              A. Q. Khan. Vice Magazine. Reading countless articles about how second year physics students can build their own nuke as long as they can get the plutonium. And on and on.

              It's a scary subject, and I don't buy all the scare tactics.

              Iran PROBABLY has nukes. No self-respecting nation would be caught without them.

              "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

              by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:39:31 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  You don't have to be a second-year ... (4+ / 0-)

                ...physics student to understand the concepts behind building a nuke. But, contrary to all the BS that's spouted about it, it takes a lot more than two years of physics, a lump of plutonium and a garage lab to make a working Bomb. Knowing how and having the capability to do so are far apart. Otherwise, the Libyan nuclear engineers my wife talk English to in the 1980s in Tripoli at Fatah University would have long ago produced one.

                And, for the record, A.Q. Khan provided materials and information about uranium Bombs, not plutonium Bombs.

                Science is just a theory.

                by Meteor Blades on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:54:00 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  So we should have no regulatory... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            charliehall

            ... infrastructure in place internationally and purely rely upon mutually assured destruction as our guiding principle?

            •  Did I say that? (0+ / 0-)

              How about somebody, ANYBODY, in this thread please read my words and not infer nonsense from them?

              "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

              by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:40:08 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm not sure how I misread (0+ / 0-)

                The law is impotent without teeth. No international law has any, aside from the threat of economic sanctions.

                Iran CAN'T USE nukes offensively without being NUKED itself. And they know that, only too well.

                •  Where did I say... (0+ / 0-)

                  ...we should have NO regulatory infrastructure in place?

                  We can and should have a UN to monitor nukes worldwide, just for informational purposes to determine if the rest of the world should place sanctions on a particular country. I have no problem with that. I still think you've put words or ideas in my mouth with your inference that I MEANT we should have no regulatory infrastructure. You're jumping to conclusions about what I'm saying.

                  But international law and economic sanctions really are practically worthless as a deterrent. Nukes are not. Pragmatically speaking.

                  It really does take some doing to wrap your head around these concepts. I'm not a neocon. If I could, I'd close up Pandora's Box and we'd never have a nuclear threat again. But that's not reality.

                  Go ahead and ask me why we haven't been hit by a nuke from al Qaeda. I know why. Do you?

                  "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

                  by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:49:04 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Well you did say... (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    divineorder

                    who cares if they broke international law

                    and

                    it's beside the point [that they broke international law]

                    and then you went into you MAD argument. I think a reasoned reading of your reply indicates that the regulatory structure doesn't matter, only deterrence.

        •  And the consensus is wrong (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MPociask, Dr Marcos

          Oran never ratified the 2003 modified 3.1 agreement. They said they would voluntary abide by it pending a ratification vote by the Majlis, or Iranian parliament. In October 2005, they rejected it and hence, Iran never ratified the 3.1 agreement.

          From February 2003 to March 2007, Iran voluntarily observed the modified Code 3.1. But, in February 2007, the Board of Governors of the IAEA sent Iran's nuclear dossier to the United Nations Security Council. This action was in violation of the IAEA statute setting forth conditions under which the Agency could refer a member state's dossier to the UNSC. In retaliation, Iran notified the IAEA in March 2007 that it would no longer voluntarily observe the modified Code 3.1.

          So since Iran was never a signatory to the modified 3.1 agreement, and the original 3.1 agreement was still the only legally binding one in place, which set the time frame for notification at 180 days prior to receiving fissile material, I say again, Iran has not broken the law.

          cheers,

          Mitch Gore

          January 20, 2009... the end of an error.

          by Lestatdelc on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:49:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  so, there is common ground to be had (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dems2004, divineorder, zizi

    I was pleasantly surprised that the outcome of these talks was so promising.

    "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

    by limpidglass on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:10:34 PM PDT

  •  Except they were not violating the IAE NPT (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MPociask

    From your earlier article:

    The Subsidiary Arrangements specify when a state must report a new facility to the IAEA. "Code 3.1" of the 1976 version of the Subsidiary Arrangements requires states to report on new facilities "normally no later than 180 days before the facility is scheduled to receive nuclear material for the first time."

    Show me evidence this facility is closer than 180 form receiving  nuclear material for the first time.

    The facility is still under construction had does not have any nuclear material as of yet and I have yet to see anyone present evidence it is closer than 180 days form doing so.

    cheers,

    Mitch Gore

    January 20, 2009... the end of an error.

    by Lestatdelc on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:12:13 PM PDT

  •  Hmmm... the fruits of diplomacy (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dems2004, soms

    I guess the implication being that diplomacy is ghey... not that there's anything wrong with that.

    ;-)

    But seriously, great post, Plutonium Page.

  •  Plutonium Page, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder, MPociask

    and where exactly does that leave Israel, a nuclear weapons power outside any international agreements?  The one that's pushing the hardest for a military attack on Iran?

    The big Elephant in the room.

    "Only when the last tree has withered, and the last fish caught, and the last river been poisoned, will we realize we cannot eat money." Cree

    by Tyto Alba on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:19:07 PM PDT

  •  Lindsey Grahm is going to be SO mad! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dansmith17

    "I wanna blow up Iran! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA AAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!"

  •  IF all parties involved do what they say (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder, MPociask

    Iran isn't going to get rid of its nuclear arms.

    It seeks them for one reason only: To PROTECT itself. Nukes are only 'good' for one thing:

    Deterrent. Self-defense. If Iran is attacked or nuked, it could retaliate. And it should be ABLE to, just like any other country that has the capability.

    Iran should be free from being terrorized or attacked by Israel. It may not be a perfect example of democracy, but who the hell gets to judge what nation has the higher moral ground?

    I don't want the job. And lest anyone misunderstand my comments here, let me remind you all that if Iran EVER nuked ANYONE, Tehran would be reduced to a red hot glowing mass of glass sand. No one knows this better than the Supreme Leader, even if Ahmedinejand is too stupid to understand.

    "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

    by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:26:36 PM PDT

    •  One thing I want everyone to keep in mind... (7+ / 0-)

      ... when talking in theoretical terms about deterrence and weapons programs, is that these are nuclear weapons we are talking about. They aren't just shotguns because someone who hates you has them.

      They're nukes, and it is in everyone's best interest to not have as many of them around as we do right now.

      The theory of deterrence is nice, but that doesn't mean "give everyone nukes". It doesn't work that way.

      Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

      by Page van der Linden on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:30:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't want to give everyone nukes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        divineorder

        Nowhere in my comments did I infer or say that.

        I'm a realist. Ever since A.Q. Khan, we must deal with the fact that Muslim countries have nukes.

        I've protested against proliferation, probably before you were born, PP. I appreciate your efforts to rid the planet of nukes. But it's just not going to happen.

        Neither will I panic or become terrorized by my own government because they can't say what the truth is: Nukes are NOT the biggest worry on the planet. Because to use them is near-instant suicide for any country.

        Except the U.S., of course, unless they attack Russia, for some godforsaken reason. And that's just not gonna happen, either.

        "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

        by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:34:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think it's foolish to assume ... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dems2004

          ...after what we just saw the previous eight years that neither the U.S. nor Russia nor Iran has or may in the future have any Dr. Strangeloves or Major Kongs in high places.

          Science is just a theory.

          by Meteor Blades on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:45:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You may be right... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            divineorder, dansmith17

            ...and you may be fearmongering, too.

            Think about this: Even if Kim Jong-Il ORDERS nuking Alaska or Seattle...will his generals carry OUT the order? Those guys in the big hats you see in the background?

            They may like their lives, but I know one thing: They're probably in much better health than Kim, and they LIKE their life too much to actually shoot the missile, even if Kim orders them to.

            They'll just tell him what he wants to hear...

            "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

            by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:52:16 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  And... (3+ / 0-)

            Nothing happened, nuke-wise, in the last eight years. Except one valuable lesson:

            If you have a nuke, no matter how many of your own people you've killed, you won't get invaded. Ask Kim Jong-Il and Saddam Hussein, if you don't believe me.

            "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

            by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:54:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  one issue (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dems2004, divineorder, charliehall

              I don't know that the belief that no country will actually use nuclear weapons is a reason not to try and prevent their attaining them. Proliferation brings with it a whole host of new problems that are unrelated to the actual/potential use of the weapons.  

              "I've been in an underdog position quite often in my life (niiiccce) " - Sarah Palin

              by tetsuko on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 08:15:29 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Politically, it's interesting to see what a (12+ / 0-)

    responsible adult does with the information, as opposed to an idiot.

    Bush knew about Qom, and information about it for years. Obama was briefed on this information prior to assuming Office.

    Rather than continue the nonsense of Bush with the ridiculous stances and posturing, Obama held out his hand knowing all along that Iran was lying about their capabilities.

    Even now, while brandishing a stick Obama continues to hold a hand.

    Rather than force Iran to make a decision, Obama's actions have built a worldwide concensus to challenge Iran, including Russia and China. This approach allows Iran to make the right decision, and leaves them an 'out' by offering up that hand of cooperation.

    This is how adults behave; it's such a pleasure to see this, rather than having a 500 year old vampire imitator and the boy would be Preznit taking us time and again to the brink of Armageddeon.

    Try to make it real, compared to what.

    by shpilk on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:27:25 PM PDT

    •  Obama is playing this beautifully (0+ / 0-)

      and it would not surprise me if he and Netanyahu agreed to a "good cop, bad cop" strategy. Everyone hates Israel no matter what it does; this makes it free to do the dirty work as it did at Osirak.

      All my IP addresses have been banned from Redstate.com.

      by charliehall on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 08:35:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Excellent thoughts (0+ / 0-)

    I still maintain that Iran with nukes is not a real problem for anyone--including Israel.

    They want them for PROTECTION, and that's the only practical use for them, for any country except the U.S.'s overwhelming arsenal. If anyone is serious about nuclear proliferation, they should start at home.

    "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

    by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:36:49 PM PDT

  •  Cautious optimism seems warranted (0+ / 0-)

    This is a positive step in the process but ultimately, Iran has to decide that it is not in Iran's interest to have nuclear weapons or it will eventually obtain them.

    •  Don't see how Iran could come to that conclusion (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      divineorder

      Israel is breathing down their necks. They have nukes. The only real way to protect themselves is to have a retaliatory capability.

      I would really like liberals and progressives to be able to do one thing neocons and reactionaries couldn't do if their lives depended on it: Put yourself in someone else's shoes. Put yourself in those crazy, fanatic, suicidal Muslim fundamentalists' shoes. Try it. Just for a few minutes. Imagine.

      "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

      by DaddyO on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:43:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Israel is not the issue (0+ / 0-)

        In the absence of Iranian attempts to obtain nuclear weapons Israel is no threat to Iran.  

        A little history here goes a long way.  Iran has three real reasons to want nuclear weapons.  

        1.  Iran was viciously attacked by Iraq which used chemical weapons against them.  Although Iraq is no longer a threat to Iran, suffering hundreds of thousands of casualties and chemical attack with limited ability to respond is quite scarring.
        1.  The United States declared Iran to be part of the Axis of Evil and called for the overthrow of the Iranian regime. The United States did overthrow the Iraqi regime which was another member of the Axis of Evil.  And the Iraqis invading Iran? They were armed and encouraged by...the US.  
        1.  The third reason is that Pakistan is nuclear armed.  Although Pakistan is currently not opposed to Iran, there is a reasonable potential for Pakistan to be taken over by radical Sunni Muslims akin to the Taliban...who view Iranian Shi'a as heretics.  (The degree to which this is relevant is unclear and this is somewhat more speculative than the other reasons.)  
      •  i dont think (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        divineorder

        anyone here is trying to argue that Iran trying to develop nuclear weapons is illogical.  

        "I've been in an underdog position quite often in my life (niiiccce) " - Sarah Palin

        by tetsuko on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 08:29:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  And you need to realize (0+ / 0-)

        that we can't have everyone in the world armed with nukes as if it is inevitable, if we hope for nonproliferation and disarmament. Obama's security council resolution set the stage for transparency and nuclear safeguards among all existing or potential nuclear states and that includes everyone.

        If his diplomatic efforts work this will be a great accomplishment.

        http://geneva.usmission.gov/...

        Language is wine upon the lips. -Virginia Woolf

        by valadon on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 03:56:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  You mean we're not (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dansmith17

    gonna bomb Iran?  :)

    If not me, who? If not now, when?

    by ramara on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:58:37 PM PDT

  •  In case anyone cares - this might be (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dems2004, divineorder, zizi

    change you can believe in.

    no remuneration was received by anyone for the writing of this message

    by ItsSimpleSimon on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 07:59:35 PM PDT

  •  Isn't IAEA walking back the statement by ME-B? (0+ / 0-)

    Heard something to that effect.

    There's something attractive about invincible ignorance... for the first 5 seconds.

    by MNPundit on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 08:02:08 PM PDT

  •  unfortunately, considering the past and current (0+ / 0-)

    the past and current nature of Iran negotiations and forthrightness,  this doesn't instill confidence ...

  •  After all these years (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder

    it seems that Mohammed ElBaradei is still on the job, still getting it done. He must have a very interesting life.

    Excellent article, as usual, Page.

    Thanks for all your hard work on it.

  •  kind of disconcerting (5+ / 0-)

    it seems that a certain slice of the commentary here would like to see Iran reach nuclear status for no reason other than maybe they think it may redress some grievance they (commentators) may have with US foreign policy.  

    "I've been in an underdog position quite often in my life (niiiccce) " - Sarah Palin

    by tetsuko on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 08:09:41 PM PDT

  •  Iran is in the right (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder

    Acton's piece a ridiculous. See this: When did Iran begin building the Qom nuclear facility

    The fact remains that Iran is being told it has to declare all its nuclear sites at a time when the US and Israel are blatantly and ILLEGALLY threatening to bomb Iran. Why shuold Iran abide by any laws when the Israelis and the US are not? Hate to break the news to you all, but even threatening to use force against another nation constitutes a WAR CRIME. That's right -- WE'RE WAR CRIMINALS for threatening to bomb Iran.

    •  When did the US threaten to bomb Iran? I have (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dems2004, divineorder

      heard administration officials say they are not taking use of force off the table but that is standard language applicable to relations with many nations.  What law does such a statement violate?  Any citations.  And what laws has Israel violated?  As I recall, they, unlike Iran, are not a signatory to the Nonproliferation Treaty.  

      You also fail to identify any specific flaws in Acton's article.  

      •  US has threatened to nuke Iran (0+ / 0-)

        "During an impromptu April 18 press conference, President George W. Bush was asked if his assertion that "all options are on the table" regarding Iran included the possibility of a nuclear strike. Bush reiterated, "All options are on the table. We want to solve this issue diplomatically, and we’re working hard to do so." In no uncertain words, the president of the United States directly threatened Iran with a preemptive nuclear strike. It is hard to read his reply in any other way."
        FROM: Bulletin of the Atomic Scientist Sept-Oct 2006

        Keeping "force in the table" is itself a threat, and therefore constitutes a violation of international law and is also a war crime. Furthermore, the US has explicitly threatened Iran with nuclear attack. In fact the US violated its "Negative Security Assurances" by endorsing the first use of nukes against even non-nuclear armed opponents. Read the US Nuclear Posture Review of 2002 and Joint Nuclear Operations Doctrine. THe Pentagon has been considering nuking Iran. nuking Iran and Bush explicitly threatened to nuke Iran.

    •  Sure (0+ / 0-)

      One country violates the law, so it is then open season on lawlessness.

      That might happen, but only in a perfect scenario.

      Hate to break the news to us? Oh, that's right, we just flew in from the pumpkin truck.

    •  Go Theocracy! nt (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      charliehall

      "The future ain't what it used to be." - Yogi Berra

      by brooklynbadboy on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 04:03:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Who is making the threats? (0+ / 0-)

      Israel had made no threats prior to Ahmadinejad's saber rattling. Most of Israel's population is concentrated in a very small area so just a few nuclear weapons in the right place would result in a death toll not seen since the holocaust. If we are war criminals for making threats on Iran, Iran was the first criminal here.

      All my IP addresses have been banned from Redstate.com.

      by charliehall on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 08:38:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Plutonium Page... (0+ / 0-)

    Here is Acton's article:

    In March 2007, however, Iran announced to the IAEA that it was suspending the implementation of the modified Code 3.1 and reverting back to the original form. The United States has claimed that Iran started building the Qom facility before this date. If this claim is correct—and the IAEA should try and verify it—then Iran obviously breached its obligations.

    However, even if Iran only decided to build the facility after March 2007 then the charge of non-compliance still stands because Iran is not permitted to modify its subsidiary arrangements without the permission of the IAEA. Indeed, when Iran first announced it was "suspending" application of the modified Code 3.1, the IAEA stated that:

    In accordance with Article 39 of Iran’s Safeguards Agreement, agreed Subsidiary Arrangements cannot be modified unilaterally; nor is there a mechanism in the Safeguards Agreement for the suspension of provisions agreed to in Subsidiary Arrangements.[3]

    Iran justified its action by saying that the modification to Code 3.1 had not been ratified by the Majlis.[4]

    And.. here is the REST of Acton's words...

    The problem with this argument is that, like every other state, Iran did not ask its parliament, the Majlis, to ratify its original Subsidiary Arrangements! To claim that a modification to these arrangements requires ratification is therefore absurd.

    Moreover, Iran—like every other state—modifies its Subsidiary Arrangements regularly, without asking for parliamentary ratification. For example, as the size of its enrichment plant at Natanz has grown, Iran has (reluctantly) agreed to various improvements in safeguards. These improvements required modifications of the Subsidiary Arrangements, but Iran did not ask the Majlis to ratify them.

    If EVERY OTHER STATE regularly modifies its Subsidiary Arrangements without ratification, then simply, Iran is being held to a standard EVERY OTHER STATE routinely ignores.  That is by Acton's article.  So, if Iran is in violation, so is EVERY OTHER STATE that does it.

    The "rule of law"; it applies to you and me, but not the rich, the Republican or the celebrity. Welcome to America!

    by MotleyPatriot on Sun Oct 04, 2009 at 11:16:16 PM PDT

    •  Wait a minute...am I stupid? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      charliehall

      It seems to me reading this article buttresses the idea that Iran can't suspend its agreements unilaterally. If it cannot do that, then wouldn't that make them not in compliance when they built to Qom plant?

      "The future ain't what it used to be." - Yogi Berra

      by brooklynbadboy on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 04:07:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not stupid... No... (0+ / 0-)

        The point is that EVERY state does stuff like this, so, Iran is not doing anything more "illegal" than any other state.

        You can read background on Iran and the Middle East, and my commentary here, here and here.

        The "rule of law"; it applies to you and me, but not the rich, the Republican or the celebrity. Welcome to America!

        by MotleyPatriot on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 05:41:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  THAT was an ether to this whole blog entry,sir (0+ / 0-)

      Nice find. Who cares about Iran really? I don't. Our country is falling apart, we dont have time to shake our fist at Iran and think we are righteous in our authority. Holy Shit, are we that deluded into thinking we follow INTERNATIONAL LAWS?

      •  Thank you... (0+ / 0-)

        If you read my response to brooklynbadboy, you'll find the links to my essays on this issue.

        I wouldn't even have responded, but, I got tired of hearing how Iran had done something wrong and Acton's article being cited.

        The "rule of law"; it applies to you and me, but not the rich, the Republican or the celebrity. Welcome to America!

        by MotleyPatriot on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 05:42:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Great Diary PP (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cheforacle

    Language is wine upon the lips. -Virginia Woolf

    by valadon on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 03:58:20 AM PDT

  •  Lost in transcription? (0+ / 0-)

    In this diary, you included the following blockquote:

    We now have an Iran that is willing to come to the table. We have two more meetings scheduled, one in which they will announce the -- they will allow the inspectors to visit the Qom site which has just been recently announced and the other one to discuss methodology by which we can ship flow and rich uranium out of the country.

    Emphasis mine.

    Was this transcribed from a phone call or other conversation?  It seems to me from the context that "flow and rich" should read "low-enriched".

    Not picking nits, just wondering.

  •  Doesn't change fact we r war criminals,PlutoniumP (0+ / 0-)

    It's sad to see the progressive movement just collapse under the weight of corruption. We have people on this forum who have been deluded into the Obama presidency not turning authoritarian in the similar fashion that Bush Crime Family did. Don't take that bet, because you will lose. And it doesn't make you a "shill" or  "racist" to say that Obama leadership is leading us to another road of dictatorship.

    You know how you can tell?
    XE aka Blackwater
    Triple Canopy

    This War on Terror is nothing without those contractors. I mean, MERCENARIES. At least Grayson is doing something about it.

    This is all a ruse for power and Daily Kos is spinning every bit of it into some roses and sunshine bs. Not to mention it's unethical to follow the War on Terror line it's immortal,it's deceptive, it's beyond self righteous. It's beligerent to our constitution and our way of life. Progressives are trying to turn the Obama presidency into a triumph for "Our" side.

    Why did Obama keep Gates on board? Face it, he played every single one of us. This isn't about freedom this isn't about Liberty and this sure as hell isnt about Democracy.

    Oh and regardless of what Obama says or the Pentagon or the Military brass says, WE still torture. We outsource it by the oil drum, literally. And Obama's cabinet knows. The military is a business,the prisons are a business and to twist the progressives movement to march with the war party is priority number 1.

    And instead of Obama caring for the people, he cares more about marching us off with more military bases and making the brass happy. How dare we even put terms on Iran. Israel wont even declare it has nuclear arms. This is so tragic everything we were told is a effin myth or a lie. And you know what happens if you say that? You are an anti semite to the Western press.

    Last question, Why should we care to rise this empire when in the end it's going to screw us all?  All of these questions we ask we already know the answer. All this country does is con you into thinking it's for the greater good when really it's the money, genocide, power, authoritarianism. Please dont indoctrinate our kids into the Great Myth, that America is some patron saint for diplomacy. I can't even count how many should be arrested in the white house and former Bush Crime Family co. Sorry, Plutonum P. You are being had in the worst way. Optimism is for suckers when you have armies of mercenaries to do your bidding i.e. murdering any opposition to the empire

    P.S. Did you know the EMPIRE ordered to ban the public from seeing anymore recent/past torture photos last week?

  •  Iran is no exception? The Height of Hypocrisy (0+ / 0-)

    Tell me, what right is it of ours to dictate to Iran their rights to Nuclear Weaponry? Does Israel follow these same guidelines? I am guessing if Israel disclosed their Nuclear Arms cache, US wouldn't be in a position to dictate to Persians what must be done. Seems to me we have a bit of credibility problem.

    Wow, how sad is it to see Americans thumping their chest and loudly declaring we are righteous enough to declare law and order around the world. This country has become so deluded and hypocritical to levels I haven't seen before. We are so past Alice in Wonderland. As soon as you said "Iran is no exception" I could picture you singing this song to any nation that defies us.

    http://www.youtube.com/...

    America has no right anymore to declare a damn thing. We have lost that right a long time ago,Plutonium P. No amount of assertion or bold lettering will change that. Not even if you bang that shoe on the table.

  •  So tired of Americans (0+ / 0-)

    My fellow countrymen/women dictating what the world should do. We lost that right,chief. We lost it with Hiroshima,Vietnam,Iraq,Afghanistan. Any place we did a hostile takeover to put up a Vatican sized military base. We are the elephant in the room that has no right to speak. I got a treaty for you we should have abided by: Native Americans

    Sorry but our soapbox has rotted to the core. We can't stand on it anymore.

    •  This comment is offensive (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cheforacle

      Afghanistan was not a "hostile takeover" but the freedom of its citizens from the terror of the Taliban -- who were harboring the terrorists who directed the murder of three thousand Americans on 9/11. Are you a Taliban or Al Qaeda supporter?

      All my IP addresses have been banned from Redstate.com.

      by charliehall on Mon Oct 05, 2009 at 08:40:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I will tell you what is offensive to me (0+ / 0-)

        The Fear Factory churning out lies merged with distortions. All we had to do in Afghanistan was send in a special ops to find Bin Laden but see it doesn't work that way. What we did in essence was a forced occupation just the way momma makes them.

        Am I a taliban or Al Q supporter? No, and I don't support terrorist cloaked organizations either: the CIA,Black Water or Triple Canopy etc. But guess who does?

        This is such vile indoctrination to rev up the fear of  Islamic societies. What exactly did these organizations do that was beyond anything we have participated in? I call red herring. I see no evidence to the contrary we have any validity in these areas regarding terror which we are supporting/engaging in. Everyone has their cutthroat moments. The supreme pirate of the world has no credibility concerning issues concerning Freedom for all. And that's what we are, the supreme pirate of the world with a fleet of red white and blue ships. In short, we aren't any better, we just are more crafty at framing the message. Still doesn't change the truth that we live under a bed of lies to make us sleep better at night while we rape/plunder/destroy societies in the name of our nation. Quite frankly, I find THAT to be truly offensive.

  •  Conservative argument in 15 years: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MindRayge

    The French are supplying nuclear fuel to Iran.

    You're either with us or against us.

  •  Russians secretly providing expert help (0+ / 0-)

    George Friedman analyzed two media leaks this weekend about Iran and the fact that Russia has atomic experts in Iran has changed the game.

    Friedman explains that Obama has two choices but they're based on Russia:  1) Russia pulls the scientists and supports sanctions.  2) Russia denies the scientists and doesn't support sanctions, therefore the military strike is the only option.

    Friedman explains that Russia considers Obama to be weak and indecisive but Friedman explains that this view historically back-fires and has often leads into wars.

    Obama knew about this in Geneva and has given lip-service to mutual peace but neither Russia nor Iran trust Obama.

    So, I think any discussion that does not take into account the leaks from this weekend are out-of-date.

    Stratfor: Two Leaks and the Deepening Iran Crisis

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