News+and+politics religion philosophy the cynic librarian: Where's the Press When You Need Them?

Friday, August 25, 2006

Where's the Press When You Need Them?

I am still wondering why the mainstream media has refused to find and interview the authors at the US Army War College International Strategic Studies (ISS) group who issued a recommendation that seems to envision a nuclear-capable Iran. Their report, GETTING READY FOR A NUCLEAR-READY IRAN, suggests ways to channel this capability in responsible ways that benefit Iran and the mideast region itself, and would calm some of the US' fears. ...

Could it be bcause of the following recommendation that the report makes concerning Israel's nuclear stockpile? According to this report, the US should remedy this perecption of favoritism towards Israel by:

Encourage Israel to initiate a Middle East nuclear restraint effort that would help isolate Iran as a regional producer of fissile materials. [emphasis in original] Israel should announce that it will unilaterally mothball (but not yet dismantle) Dimona, and place the reactor’s mothballing under IAEA monitoring. At the same time, Israel should announce that it is prepared to dismantle Dimona and place the special nuclear material it has produced in “escrow” in Israel with a third trusted declared nuclear state, e.g., the United States. It should make clear, however, that Israel will only take this additional step when at least two of three Middle Eastern nations (i.e., Algeria, Egypt, or Iran) follow Israel’s lead by mothballing their own declared nuclear facilities that are capable of producing at least one bomb’s worth of plutonium or highly enriched uranium in 1 to 3 years. Israel should further announce that it will take the additional step of handing over control of its weapons usable fissile material to the IAEA when:
  • a. All states in the Middle East (i.e., the three mentioned above)dismantle their fissile producing facilities (large research and power reactors, hexafluoride, enrichment plants, and all reprocessing capabilities).
  • b. All nuclear weapons states (including Pakistan) formally agree not to redeploy nuclear weapons onto any Middle Eastern nation’s soil in time of peace. Such arms restraint by deed rather than negotiation should avoid the awkwardness of current Middle Eastern arms control proposals that would have Israel enter into nuclear arms talks with states that do not recognize it and have it admit that it has nuclear weapons―a declaration that would force Israel’s neighbors immediately to justify some security reaction including getting bombs of their own.
From an Iranian persepctive, it must seem to be the height of US hypocrisy to demand that it not have nclear weapons while the US turns a blind eye to Israel's own weapons.

The Army War College report's recommendations would not only go a long way in heading off nuclear confrontation in the Mideast but also provide goodwill with Iran that can stabilize the region.

Update 1 Dafna Linzer writes:
Officials familiar with the inspectors' summer findings said they will report that Iran has produced several kilograms of low-enriched uranium and as much as 145 tons of converted uranium in the past year. Iran's two main nuclear facilities, the IAEA's most heavily monitored in the world, are outfitted with dozens of cameras pointed at every piece of equipment and barrel that contains uranium.

Inspectors continue to visit certain sites as well, but Iran ended voluntary cooperation with the agency several months ago and has threatened to end it entirely if the Security Council imposes sanctions.

Much of what is known by U.S. intelligence about Iran's nuclear program comes from the inspectors. Current intelligence assessments predict that Iran could have a nuclear weapon within a decade if it vastly improves its capabilities.
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[Xposted at Sic Semper Tyrannais]

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