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Thread: The Iranian nuclear deal

  1. #26
    To vex the world rather than divert it. Villerar's Avatar
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    Re: The Iranian nuclear deal

    A former director of the Mossad wrote a very interesting opinion (completely in line with Goldberg's reading of events, I must say: he's not ecstatic about the deal, but thinks it's workable - rather good, even). He notes that Israeli society never had an intelligently critical debate of the deal and that the crucial point, the closure of the Arak reactor that could be used to enrich weapon-grade radioactive material, is ignored in the debate (also elsewhere), while the deal has really strong showing on this point.

    http://forward.com/opinion/321071/is...het-over-iran/

    The congressional debate on the Iran nuclear deal is over. President Obama has prevailed. The United States will implement the P5+1 agreement with Iran. Israel will have to live with it.

    In sharp contrast with Washington, no real public discussion of the deal’s details was ever conducted in Israel. Most of the opposition patriotically sided with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who dismissed the deal with the kneejerk pronouncement that it “paved the way to a nuclear Iran.” The public did not demand an explanation of the prime minister’s reasoning. Netanyahu said it was a bad deal. End of story.

    In fact, many senior figures familiar with the issue’s complexities, myself included, have argued the opposite. Included are Uzi Eilam, former director of the Israel Atomic Energy Commission; Issac Ben-Israel, former head of research and development of the entire Israeli defense establishment, and now a distinguished professor of strategic affairs and chairperson of the Israel Space Agency, and Meir Dagan, my successor as director of the Mossad.

    To appreciate fully the negotiators’ achievement, it must first be noted that despite the vast attention given to uranium enrichment, this was never the critical aspect of Iran’s nuclear program. The pivotal element was and remains the Arak heavy water installation, designed to produce enriched uranium through a plutogenic process, involving plutonium. This product is essential in the weaponization of a ballistic nuclear warhead. The deal calls for the Arak reactor core to be destroyed.

  2. #27
    To vex the world rather than divert it. Villerar's Avatar
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    Re: The Iranian nuclear deal

    It looks like Iran is very serious indeed about upholding its commitments under the agreement, Kerry stated. Put otherwise it doesn't appear that Iran is trying to game the negotiating partners. And the deal's conservative critics turn out to be wrong, to the surprise of nobody with any clue whatsoever.

    (The overwhelming majority of the American opposition against the deal, both from political and religious groups, was incredibly stupid anyway. Atomic security experts rated it a near-ideal outcome for the United States. And conservatives in about every other negotiating country were on board with the deal. Only political reactions in Israel were dumber than the American conservatives'.)

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-35191146

    The US says Iran has taken a "significant step" towards meeting its nuclear commitments, by sending a large quantity of uranium abroad.

    Secretary of State John Kerry spoke after Iran dispatched a shipment of more than 11 tonnes of low-enriched uranium to Russia.

    Iran signed a deal in July with six international powers.

    It is designed to demonstrate that Iran is not on the threshold of being able to make an atomic bomb.

    Under the deal, Iran agreed to reduce its holdings of low-enriched uranium; sharply reduce its quantity of centrifuges - used to enrich uranium - and cut its output of plutonium by re-engineering a power plant.

    Mr Kerry said Monday's shipment of low-enriched uranium to Russia had tripled the amount of time it would take to produce enough fuel for a bomb - from two or three months to nine months.

  3. #28
    To vex the world rather than divert it. Villerar's Avatar
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    Re: The Iranian nuclear deal

    Rouhani's supporters won a comfortable share of the Iranian Majlis.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-36178276

    Run-off elections have given moderates and reformists a working majority in the Iranian parliament for the first time in more than a decade.

    Supporters of President Hassan Rouhani won 42% of the total seats - short of an outright majority but comfortable enough to pass his legislative plans.

    Independents took nearly 30% and many of them are said to be reform-minded.

    Hardliners won just under a third of seats in a humiliating performance, a BBC correspondent reports.

    The run-off was held on Friday in constituencies where no candidate had won the minimum 25% of the vote at the first round in February.

    The results are regarded by many as an endorsement of the nuclear agreement that the government of President Rouhani signed with the US and other world powers to curtail Iran's nuclear programme in return for the lifting of international sanctions.

  4. #29
    To vex the world rather than divert it. Villerar's Avatar
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    Re: The Iranian nuclear deal

    Opponents of the Iran nuclear agreement distort a payment over a unilaterally cancelled weapons shipment as ransom for hostages. (Also note the opponent's American privilege, as they seek to portray the United States as the sole stakeholder against Iran in the nuclear agreement; of course the US are the sole stakeholder against Iran in the hostage exchange and the settlement over the arms cancellation.)

    http://www.vox.com/2016/8/4/12370848...an-400-million

    Late on Thursday, the Associated Press published a pretty inflammatory piece claiming that the US paid a lot of cash to Iran in exchange for the release of several detained American citizens. "US says $400 [million] payment was contingent on release of prisoners," blared the headline. Sure sounds a lot like a ransom, right?

    Wrong. The US did not pay Iran a ransom, despite the insistence of a number of leading conservatives like Paul Ryan and Donald Trump.

    The AP story is actually describing a payment that President Obama announced back in January. What’s more, the payment was the result of an agreed settlement to a 35-year case in international court — according to the AP's own reporting. It had nothing to do with any "hostage" payments.

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