Monday, April 14, 2008

How Not to Be Helpful: Iranian Edition

Somehow, the very real seriousness of what the United States may or may not do as regards Iraq's Persian neighbor pales when one considers what a nation of smurfs Iran turns out to be. Head smurf  Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is visiting the Philippines with the intention of sharing the great knowledge of nuclear energy his country has gained:

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad here on Monday expressed Iran's readiness to put its expertise on peaceful nuclear technology at disposal of all nations within the framework of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) regulations.

Ahmadinejad made the remark in a meeting with Philippine Foreign Minister Alberto Romulo, adding that certain monopolist powers try to introduce nuclear energy as atomic bomb.

We're reasonably sure that "monopolist power" is Liechtenstein. And the Liechtensteinians have been saying mean and untrue things:

The seditious policy of certain nuclear powers possessing nuclear arms is a big lie, the president said, adding that the Islamic Republic of Iran has realized this and resisted pressures of bullying and monopolist powers.

"Iran is to restore the right to acquiring nuclear technology for peaceful purposes to all nations," he added.

And there you are. Surely one can see that taking an aggressive stance against Iran would be like squashing a kitten.

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On the other hand, perhaps the kitten has claws:

The head of Iran's nuclear program has canceled a meeting scheduled for today with the chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Gholam Reza Aghazadeh, the Iranian vice-president, gave no reason for calling off talks with Mohamed ElBaradei, who was expected to use the meeting to investigate claims that Tehran had attempted to develop nuclear weapons.

Diplomats said the meeting was likely to have dealt with last week's announcement by the Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, of a major expansion of the country's capacity for uranium enrichment, in defiance of UN security council demands.

The talks were seen as a test of Iran's willingness to cooperate with the IAEA's demands for greater openness surrounding what Tehran maintains is a civilian nuclear program. Iran is under three sets of security council sanctions for its refusal to comply.

This leaves the impression that Aghazadeh felt he could bluff his way through a meeting and decided at the last minute that he could not do so. Where the bluff may really lie is very much an open question, since it behooves Iran to keep an American incursion at bay while sending as many mixed messages about their nuclear activities as possible.

Doing so staves off further sanctions, though a bill working its way through Congress means to do just that; however, they might be tough to make stick. Russia and China have been lumbering around the minarets looking for advantage, and the U.N. has been unable, as noted in the above story, to effectively rein in Iran.

What's sad, though, is that if Iran is using the promise of nuclear energy as a cover for more nefarious activities, they have unfurled a shroud that threatens to darken the good work that has made the promise of the atom manifest. That's too parochial, of course: there are many facets to Iran and its machinations (and the U.S. and its machinations, for that matter) to narrow it down to our corner of the world.

So of what can we be sure? Of one thing only: that the Philippines won't be benefiting much from Iran's nuclear expertise.

 

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Regardless of what one's political sentiments may be, the mad mullahs of Iran cannot be trusted with uranium enrichment technology. They won't stop at light enrichment for power reactors. There is a world of difference between a free country such as India or Israel having nuclear weapons enrichment capability, and Iran, which is nothing more than an Islamic fascist state. Just think about it: Iran is essentially a dictatorial theocracy intent on propagating Shiite militantism, and a friend to Hamas and many other terrorist groups. It is NOT a free country. We need to have clarity of vision. Until Iran becomes a free country, every effort should be made to stop its uranium enrichment ambitions. Mark my words (again!): as soon as Iran has sufficient weapons-grade uranium, it will use such material against Israel. And no, I'm not too keen about Pakistan having nuclear weapons capability either. It, too, isn't a free country and the alliance between it and the US is clearly one of convenience. We'd do better befriending India as long as Pakistan is a dictatorship.

Rod Adams said...

Whenever I read comments like the one posted by anonymous, I get very concerned. Just what does he expect our leaders to do if Iran really is interested in developing a bomb?

Is he in favor of massive destruction of a nation with 70 million people as a preemptive measure against people that he does not like having access to weapons that have been owned by such regimes as the Soviet Union and Communist China for many decades?

It is one thing to want to discourage proliferation, but it is another to figure out what the realistic options might be.

Anonymous said...

Rod, what ARE the realistic options? This condition was started by the failed policies of America's worst President, Jimmy Carter. Read more here:

http://www.jerrypournelle.com/view/2008/Q2/view514.html#Carter

Now obviously I don't want 70 million people devastated. But that decision has already been made by the mad mullahs in their crusade for a world-wide Islamic theocracy. I guess the lessons of the Battle of Lepanto are lost upon us. We are in a three way struggle between Christendom, Islamic fascism and atheist humanism (which BTW has murdered 50 million babies since Roe v Wade - where's your concern for human life there?).

Massive desturction of a nation? No, Rod, I don't favor that. But one wonders why YOU favor Roe v Wade which has murdered 50 million innocents.

Starvid said...

Let's leave the abortion crap out of this, shall we?

Say Iran gets nuclear weapons. In what way does the situation change? Pretty much not at all.

The only thing that will happen is that the US will no longer use as confrontative rhetoric about invading or destroying Iran anymore, just like when the situation changed when China got nukes (Eisenhower had been talking about nuclear weapons against China over the conflict over some Taiwan strait islands).

Iran cannot possible use the bombs, as that would mean certain annihilation of Iran.

An Iran with nuclear weapons is a much more attractive situation than a war with Iran to stop the country from getting nuclear weapons.