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West Cedes A Nuclear Victory To Iran

There are many reports circulating today about the coming EU-Iran nuclear talks set for Wednesday, and most of them are characterizing the Iranian regime and its position as fundamentally changed and suddenly pragmatic. Digest them (and associated headlines) with extreme caution. First up, from the Associated Press, the final paragraph gets directly to the heart of the matter at hand.

The approach on both sides ahead of Wednesday's talks, however, might make a compromise easier, because of a new willingness to examine possible ways of redefining an enrichment freeze, said the officials, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because their information was confidential.

First, understand that Iran has long said that its nuclear program is non-negotiable. Period. Judging by past actions and words, this should be accepted at face value.

Second, understand that Iran has demanded talks 'without preconditions,' specifically the US - and presumably European - demand that Iran first cease enrichment. The West Cedes this to Iran by holding the EU-Iran Wednesday talks without precondition.

But most importantly, please note that after ceding this, the West is considering a ground-up redefinition of the central term 'enrichment.' Be very wary of diplomatic hocus-pocus with the magic wand of language. Observe specifics (resultant language) coming from discussions very carefully.

Next up is from the UK's Guardian Unlimited, where the headline informs the reader of the intended message: Iran tones down rhetoric ahead of nuclear talks.

Iran's unusually conciliatory tone ahead of two key meetings tomorrow raised hopes that its tense confrontation with the US and some western countries on nuclear and security issues is beginning to subside.

Speaking prior talks with the EU on Tehran's suspect nuclear programme that are due to resume in Ankara, foreign ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini described the west's approach as "positive and realistic" and said grounds for optimism existed.

"The western side has not set any preconditions for this round of talks and has called for holding negotiations in a calm atmosphere," Mr Hosseini told Irna news agency. "So coming to a purposeful and working agreement is imaginable."

Again, why would Iran wield its customary rhetoric when the West is ceding Iranian demands for talks without precondition? How reasonable of the Iranians, no? Quite "positive and realistic" indeed of the West.

Cede Iran what it wants and the regime becomes quite reasonable indeed. Unless, of course, one is paying attention to Iranian activities in Lebanon or Iraq. It begs one to wonder, how on earth does al-Qaeda get its new recruits from Diyala Province to Pakistan? No matter. Iran is 'toning down its rhetoric,' so move along, please.

It requires an Arab media outlet for proper context beyond the afforded press conferences hyping up the 'progress' ahead in Ankara, and the 'softening' of both sides toward a supposedly more reasonable approach. From the United Arab Emirates' Khaleej Times, their corresponding article is headlined quite differently: Iran vows no nuclear retreat on eve of EU talks.

Iran’s unwavering defiance over its nuclear programme has further dampened hopes of a breakthrough at talks with the European Union on Wednesday.

Iran and the EU resume discussions in Turkey with the 27-nation bloc hoping to persuade Teheran to halt sensitive work major powers fear is aimed at making atom bombs, in return for a suspension of sanctions against it.

But Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told Reuters in an interview on Monday the Islamic state would not accept any such ‘double suspension’ and the government spokesman took a similar line on Tuesday.

‘This issue (Iran’s nuclear activities) will not go backwards and we have followed a legal path for the country’s progress,’ Gholamhossein Elham told a regular briefing.

In order to accept the popular Western media accounts for the message(s) they intend to project, one must first trust an Iranian regime that leads the world in state sponsored terrorism and that hid its nuclear program for 20 years.

The important thing to take from the news cycle today is that the West is ceding to Iranian demands, Iran is getting precisely what it wishes, and it intends to use these talks to redefine the very term 'enrichment,' necessarily bringing the entire process of the Iranian nuclear crisis back to square one.

Translation: "We're being awfully nice. We're making progress in our enrichment. Let's start this over again on new grounds. We could really use the time."

You've been warned.

9 Comments

You forgot to mention Gates telling everyone that diplomacy is working.

So what? you have deduced that the power that be are going to give something to Iran and hail it as a diplomatic victory. I don't have a problem with that and nore should you. If there is any chance to get out of Iraq and Afghanistan with some pride intact, we need to establish some kind of working relationship with the Iranians and Syrians. The nuclear issue actually has no bearing on the Iraq issue. It's something that Israel wants from us.

The old saying: "keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer." does have some merit here.

Diplomacy is working? With due respect, EFP's continue to stream from Iran into Iraq and their enrichment program has neither halted or been curtailed. Perhaps there is another measure I am missing. Feel free to offer one up here.

"If there is any chance to get out of Iraq and Afghanistan with some pride intact, we need to establish some kind of working relationship with the Iranians and Syrians."

Get out of Iraq or Afghanistan with our pride intact? We are seeking to establish both as self-reliant, self-sustainable and self-defensible states who are not a threat to US national security. There's no stake in pride, sir. The key to your quote is your choice of seeking to 'get out.'

I ask you, why on earth would you seek a 'working relationship' with two state sponsors of terror with regimes that are not pliable in a reasonable manner? Why?

Is it not clear enough that the 'working' end of the existing Iranian and Syrian 'relationship' is the 'working' end of a truck bomb or other explosive device?

Perhaps the American dead in the Khobar Towers bombing or the US Embassy and Marine Barracks in Beirut is not compelling? The 'contemporary' American dead in EFP roadside bomb blasts? Or the shattered body of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and 19 others in just one 'communique' from the Syrian regime?

And you want pride intact?

You are naive and totally ignorant of the players in that theater. First of all, none of those attacks that you are referencing is substantiated as an Iranian or Hezbollah attacks. They are just allegations just like Saddam's WMDs. But we do know that most of the attacks in Iraq are propagated by Al Qaeda that is made up of foreign fighters following the Wahhabi/Salafist ideology coming out of Saudi funded madrases that go to Iraq to kill Americans. We also know that both the Iranians and Syrians are enemies of these guys. Also, weather you like it or not, Iraq is geographically stuck between Iran and Syria and that will not change in a 100 years. Besides, the Iranians are signing $100 billion deals with the Chinese, 30 billion with Europe and another 80 billion deal with India, all over the past year. You want to sit back nice happy while everyone else give you lip service with washed down sanctions? Time to make friends. Iranians have already signaled us through Italy that they want to help in Afghanistan without any conditions and willingness to establish economic partnerships with the US. Even Haliburton worked there. That's the way to neutralize the Iranian threat. Invest and become a partner in their oil, gas and nuclear programs. The current strategy doesn't work. The best way to push for a regime change is to work from the inside.

Steve Schippert is quite correct that first the EU and then the U.S.A. will `cede' to Iran's terms for `defusing' the ME nuclear `crisis.' Why? Because the Persian Gulf, the Strait of Hormuz,the Horn of Africa are vital lifelines for much of the world's petroleum traffic. What the Powers want of Iran is not that the latter nation give up being a nuclear power but that it become a `responsible' one - like, say, India, or even Pakistan. Or even like Israel, which is not just a nuclear power but a major one, with hundreds of atomic bombs and 2nd strike capability.

As concerns state-sponsored terrorism, the `beauty' of such [tongue in cheek] is that the sponsor state can turn the terrorism off at will. Sticks and carrots are the means of getting the `offender' to do just that. Given Europe's, and increasingly America's, energy dependence and political weakness, Iran will be offered nuclear carrots. Remember, the great post-9/11 fear is not of state-sponsored terror but of WMD-armed terrorists no longer under the control of any state. Under the right conditions all existing states share a common interest in the suppression of this deadly virus.

Sir, Iran suffered 8 years of full scale aggression by the co-alition of pirates through their now defunct proxy the late Saddam Hussein. Rockets against civilians, Chemicals against armed forces. The highly advanced supreme power 'accidentaly' shot down a passenger plane to stop Iran mauling the mercenary. Stuff the 20 yeas secrecy BS where it belongs. As regards terrorism, I only quote the true Americans, "We've been fighting terroprism since 1492. Are you addressing idiots?

Funny thing about that civilian airliner that was shot down....

Ever notice how the bodies in the water already had the onset of full Rigor Mortis?

Happen to be a former anti-aircraft missile system Marine, sir, and we looked long and hard at everything, including our own potential for error.

Research the flight path and the time requirements for full rigor mortise onset.

It was a probe loaded with corpses for passengers and a provocation for propaganda value.

Wrong place to shop that one. Sorry.

It was a probe loaded with corpses for passengers and a provocation for propaganda value.

And then the Iranians found a dumb anti-aircraft missile system Marine to shoot it down. Ya right.

The interesting thing is that the Iranians have now diverted the pressure away from the real reason US started to press them in the first place, support of Hezbollah and Hamas.

They still have years before they need to develop fuel for their reactors. The core for their bushehr reactor is going to be supplied by the Russians and that's good for years and additional NPP are still years away. The threat is really none existent and if you knew a little about nuclear weapons technology, you'd also know that enriched Uranium is neither the easiest way nor an efficient way to pursue weapons technology. Just take a look at Israel and India. Israel's weapons manufacturing complex consists of one heavy water reactor that burns regular uranium and converts it into plutonium. Then the reprocessing centre separates the Plutonium chemically. They didn't invest in a developing a complete fuel cycle like the Iranians.

Going back to Iraq, Obviously US didn't go to Iraq to spread democracy or find weapons of mass destruction. If you still believe that, you are ignorant, and there was no exit strategy because that was never an option. Objectives were to ensure energy security by rerouting pipelines through Jordan and Israel and get a Hydrocarbon law passed to get a 30 year control of Iraqi energy resources. To insure that these objectives are met and at the same time, maintain pressure on Iran and Syria to stop supporting the Palestinians and the Lebanese, US has to stay in Iraq with 10 or 12 military bases. I am sure you'd prefer a nice subservient democratically elected government as well as a calm and obedient population. But that didn't happen and
doesn't look like it is going to happen anytime soon.

If US wants to stay, I am sure that it can stay in Iraq forever. But the cost is going to be about 1000 lives plus a 100 billion per year. Does it worth it?

The Marine Corps did not shoot the plane down. But every AA man worth his salt studied the incident. Quite frankly, study the flight path and compare it to the normal Iranian airliner flight paths and consider the context or get off this bus.

As to the nuclear process, I am quite familiar with it. At issue was a matter of convenience for the Iranians, and AQ Kahn's centrifuge technology was laid at their feet. But no worries there either, as the Arak heavy water plutonium plant is right on schedule, and their heavy water moderator production facility is fully operational to feed it.

As to the rest, you lose me when you say "maintain pressure on Iran and Syria to stop supporting the Palestinians and the Lebanese." Let's be clear: Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hizballah. Let's not go lumping these groups in as the whole of either peoples. Let's be clear also that the target is Israel. Or there'd be no less 'support' for the minority Shi'a in Yemen, et al.

TW faces difficult editorial decisions: what kinds of threats will it take up, threats against whom and of what degree of immediacy? To take two extremes, some articles have dealt with very specific IT threats to U.S. defenses while others have addressed ME ideological/religious developments that might come to imperil our western way of life. And indeed the intense focus on the ME may seem provincial to those who think of the global politico-economic system as an entirety. It may be necessary for TW's owners/editors to lay down policy as to what kinds of articles to web-publish and what kinds of `feedback' to post.