Omid Memarian

Saturday, July 08, 2006

"When Could Iran get the bomb?"

Here is the front page of "Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists". In this article David Albright argues that Iran is close to get the enriched uranium and makes nuclear weapon. Click on the picture below to see the possible scenarios in his point of view.

While the international community is waiting for Tehran's respond to the incentive proposal and the G-8 summit will be hold next week, I think the possibility for the Iranian government to deny the proposal is getting less and less. I read that US is going to sign an agreement with Russia next week on developing their nuclear cooperation. What does it mean? Why after 10 years of halting nuclear cooperation they made this decision? It seems that the circle of pressure on Iran’s government is getting tighter. The agreement is profitable for Russia and so Putin’s administration would be softer on US pressure to stop Iran’s nuclear activities.
Look at the news:

“(AP) Russian President Vladimir Putin and President Bush are expected to make
progress at a meeting next week on a civilian nuclear power agreement, a Western
official and analysts said.

"Now that Russia has been more cooperative in putting pressure on Iran to abandon its" alleged nuclear weapons program, the United States "won't allow the Iran relationship to get in the way
of this particular activity," Wolfstahl said.

The Washington Post reported Saturday that a nuclear agreement would allow Russia to import and store nuclear fuel from U.S.-supplied power plants, opening the way to a
profitable business.”


It is very hard for Iran’s government now to give a negative respond. The content of the incentive proposal is not clear. But, if Iran does not accept the proposal-whatever it is- the possible scenarios would be ambiguously harmful. In the coming weeks, US will convince Russia to consider what they call “Iran’s Threat”. The regional arrangement would be changed by US allies in the region and also Iran’s dossier in UNSC will face harsh decision. US seem determined to stop the whole process of enrichment uranium by Iran. President Bush has emphasized several that all of the options are on the table and Iran’s “No” answer will create a huge problem for them. Iran is facing some huge economy and social problem which makes it very hard to face more international pressure.

At the same time, the conservatives in the government believe that US is not trustworthy. A few month ago, Ayatollah Ali Khamenie, Iran’s supreme leader, clarified that Iran will not go a step back, because if Iran goes back one step, US wants to go 10 steps ahead.

Iranian government is just looking at security guarantee. What US say about joining the nuclear talks just after Iran accept the EU proposal is nothing. Negotiation is just the beginning of asking the other things. Ahmadinejad and his fans believe that it is better not to say the first “yes” unless there is a powerful reason for that. But if they say first “yes” without any achievements, US will bring them to their knees in the later steps. At the time that they have not any precious play card.

That’s why it is very tricky to talk about the Iran’s answer. There are some evidence that Iran will accept suspension of enriching uranium for a couple of years and there are also some reasons that says Iran is just killing time. But now the question is this: Did US and EU countries designed the incentive proposal to be accepted by Iranians or not?

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