Time for the US to Recognise Reality of Iran’s Nuclear Plans
Middle East Online / Tony Karon
04-Apr-2010 (one comment)

Moscow and Beijing have made clear that they don’t believe Iran is building nuclear weapons. Nor does the US, for that matter. The CIA’s assessment is that no such decision has yet been taken, notes Tony Karon.

Iran diplomacy in Washington these days consists principally of coaxing the likes of Russia and China to support new sanctions – and persuading gullible journalists that Moscow and Beijing are “on board”.

On Friday, the US president Barack Obama told CBS television that Iran is trying to get the “capacity to develop nuclear weapons”, and that he and his allies “are going to ratchet up the pressure ... with a unified international community”. Nobody sets much store by such talk, of course, because President George W Bush had been saying the same thing since 2006 with little effect.

Sure, Russia and China have agreed to finally discuss a Security Council resolution to increase sanctions first imposed three years ago over Iran’s failure to comply with all the transparency requirements of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). But Moscow and Beijing have also made clear that they don’t believe Iran is building nuclear weapons. Nor does the US, for that matter. The CIA’s assessment is that no such decision has yet been taken, and that Iran’s current nuclear efforts will simply give it the option to build nuclear weapons.

As a result, Russia and China have also made clear that they will block any new sanctions that infli... >>>

Dan Huck

Evil Triumphs When Good People Keep Silent

by Dan Huck on

After the Taiwan arms sale announcement, the threat of currency manipulation charges, and the confrontation over the meeting with the Dalai Lama, Washington thinks they've laid the groundwork for cooperation with China on Iran sanctions! To me, I think the reason the Chinese will attend the meetings is they have probably engaged widely in real diplomacy to form a 'coalition' of sorts which might present a well-thought-out alternative to the West's characteristic approach of 'do what we say, or suffer consequences'.

China, Russia, Japan, Turkey, Brazil, etc., might be willing to consider ways of encouraging Iran to be more forthcoming if the encouragement is tied inextricably with similar encouragement for Israel and the other NPT non-participants to do likewise.

Neither China nor Russia, regardless of their trade ties, if one really listens to what they have been saying, appears to believe punitive sanctions are called for in this disagreement, which is so fraught with bad history, devious as well as direct attempts at domination, and mutual distrust.

Nations such as China, Japan and Russia are sensitive to their own run-ins with the US and they are not blind to the US's apparent attempted manipulation in the nuclear area. The NPT has been circumvented most recently, in the most blatant way, for example, with our special arrangement with India.

Long term, the most important and obvious damage to the NPT by actions of ours has been our 'hiding' of Israel's nuclear weapons, which we have done with impunity for 43 years! Similarly, our keeping Israel under our wing, in effect, totally untouched by international community criticism of it's colonial excesses, to put it most kindly, is wearing very thin all over the world as well as in the UN.

What are the benefits to China and Russia as well as the others for continuing to ignore US hypocrisy in the nuclear area? Wouldn't the upcoming Security Council meeting and the Nuclear Security Meeting, which Mr. Hu Jintao is going to attend, be perfect places for the nations of the world to put these cards on the table, and ask the US in a very non-confrontational but insistent manner, to address these issues of the US's relations with Israel, which many Israelis believe is America's 51st state, straightforwardly? Would the US like to work with the world community honestly about Non-Proliferation, assessing Iranian shortcomings, if any, as well as Israeli and US shortcomings, if any? This is the perfect time to insist on fairness towards the parties involved, as well as equal treatment for all.