What do you do with a problem like Ahmadinejad?

  • #1
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5288286.stm

Iran nuclear project forges ahead
Iranian President Ahmadinejad at Arak nuclear facility
The Iranian president said his message was one of peace
Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has inaugurated a new phase of a heavy water reactor project despite Western fears about its nuclear programme.

He said Iran posed no threat to other states, not even its "enemy" Israel.

Heavy water made at Arak will be used to cool a reactor being built that will create a plutonium by-product that could be used to make atomic warheads.

Observers say Iran's move aims to send a signal of defiance days ahead of a UN deadline to halt uranium enrichment.

The US says Tehran is trying to build a nuclear weapon, while Iran says it is building a reactor to supply the country with nuclear power.


Here are the actual demands of the UN.

http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs//2006/sc8792.doc.htm [Broken]

As you can see the US is convinced they are going to make weapons and Iran is convinced of it's right under the non proliferation treaty to enrich Uranium for nuclear energy facilities. It's an impasse currently.

Ahmadinejad has clearly stated on numerous occasions that the pursuit of nuclear energy is for peaceful purposes only, but the question does not seem to be: is he looking for warheads but: when he will build them.

The US uses rhetoric that says he is absolutely looking for weapons, despite it having no intelligence to support this.

Iran had defied the international community by continuing its pursuit of nuclear weapons


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5281052.stm

Of course the Iranian presidents attacks against the west and Israel give us little reason to believe he is planning only peaceful uses for enrichment, some of his rhetoric, or should I say nearly all the rhetoric we have heard about confirms this.

Should we trust Ahmadinejad or should we be wary of this political wolf in sheeps clothing, wary enough to go further? I say this because there is some talk of the US sidestepping the UN and going it alone in garnering sanctions from other countries.

More broadly what do you think is the best course of action against Iran, should it fail to comply with the UN?

And lastly a more apposite question in my mind is: who should we believe here? The US or Iran? Should we believe in the UN? And how does your belief reflect your views in thinking of an answer to the problem...

EDITED: for clarity of meaning.
 
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Answers and Replies

  • #2
Astronuc
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One could simply wait.

Ahmadinejad could actually be sincere about peaceful uses for enrichment. It could be used for enrichment of a few percent and used in Russian version of a light water reactor (LWR), which is the VVER.

The heavy water could be used in a production reactor, and could be used to produce Pu-239. That is peaceful until someone uses it as a nuclear warhead in hostile act.

Presumably, Iran could simply buy nuclear warheads, or pits, from N. Korea.

In any event, Bush needs to get a grip on reality and realize that the US is one of many nations, not the sole supreme power in the world.
 
  • #3
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First, interesting post Schrod

Schrodinger's Dog said:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5288286.stm

The US uses rhetoric that says he is absolutely looking for weapons, despite it having no intelligence to support this.

Well, lack of good intelligence. This sounds all too familiar....:rolleyes:


Should we trust Ahmadinejad or should we be wary of this political wolf in sheeps clothing, wary enough to go further?

No, but then again, we should not trust G. W. Bush either.

More broadly what do you think is the best course of action against Iran, should it fail to comply with the UN?

First and foremost, open a dialog between the two countries?

And lastly a more apposite question in my mind is: who should we believe here? The US or Iran? Should we believe in the UN? And how does your belief reflect your views in thinking of an answer to the problem...

I do not believe Iran, but at the same time I do not believe anything our government has to say anymore. They have told lie after lie and twisted enough facts for a lifetime. We should do what Kissinger said to do. (1) start an open dialog with Iran. (2) ask what conditions of security does Iran define that makes it necessary for nuclear weapons, (3) how can the US help Iran with said definition of security so that Iran does not feel the necessity to obtain nuclear weapons. http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4078254699358348828&q=charlie+rose+british+harvard+book [Broken] Listen to his words:
Kissinger said:
If present trends continue, you and we are going to hit the wall, and we are going to face a crisis in our relationship that will do enormous damage to you, and maybe to us

Given that Bush refueses to talk to Iran and Syria, I tend not to trust a word out of his mouth anymore. His time to leave government has come. He should resign or get impeached.

If he does not change his tune, Iran is going to change it for him. Iran is no Iraq. Iran has 53,000 suicide bombers on stand by. Iraq will pale in comparison to ferocity of insurgency if the US steps one foot inside Iran. It will be a massacure on both sides. And for what? Because Bush was too close minded to even open a dialog with Iran??? (1) we wont win, just like we are not winning in Iraq. (2) we will create an even bigger divide between the middle east and the United States (and it's already as big as the grand canyon). (3) Our troops are going to be sent in to fight yet another war that was fabricated on lies and falsehoods. (4) why have we not yet strung up UBL by his heels and dragged him through the streets?

ANOTHER WAR? NO THANK YOU!

Let's spend all that money and help the people in New Orleans. Let's spend that money on healthcare. Let's spend that money on Education. Let's spend that money on Science and Technology so we can widen that gap. And then whatever money is left, let's spend that helping to build the Middle East instead of tearing it down. Then they won't hate us, then they won't decide to blow themselves up. Then they might actually sit down with us for tea.
 
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  • #4
Astronuc
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cyrusabdollahi said:
First and foremost, open a dialog between the two countries?

Given that Bush refueses to talk to Iran and Syria, I tend not to trust a word out of his mouth anymore. His time to leave government has come. He should resign or get impeached.
Dialogs with Iran and Syria are long overdue. They should have been done when Khatami was president of Iran, and when Bashar al-Assad became president of Syria.
 
  • #5
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Also, Iran is a nation. Just as is Germany, or France, or Israel. They have every right to pursue nuclear technology if they want to. Other countries do not need to get our approval to govern themselves. Is this really what we want our nation to be known as? A bully that goes around meddling in everyones affairs? :confused:

I would like somone to name 1 war that Iran has started in the last 100 years. Just one. Now lets turn the coin. I CAN tell you that the United States government started a revolution in Iran and got rid of a democractically elected president, and put in the Shaw instead. Boy, whats this word im looking for again......FAIRNESS? Don't believe me? Read up on the New York Times http://www.nytimes.com/library/world/mideast/041600iran-cia-index.html

If you want to argue about hezbollah fine, but that is a proxy of Iran, just as Israel is a proxy for the United States. So that argument holds no weight. You want to argue that they might give the bomb to a terrorist group? Fine, I'll by that. But that can be prevented with tight restrictions achieved through negotiations, not blatant threats.

You see, Iran is not Iraq. Iran is not a bunch of different groups like Iraq is. Iran is a unified nation that WILL be very hostile to invaders. Much, Much moreso than Iraqis.

Be aware, if we go to war with Iran get ready to send your children and your childrens children to the middle east. 10 years Iran held off Iraq after the US gave Iraq massive support in the 80's. They lost 1 million people in that war. They know what war is like, and they will take it seriously. If you think the US forces will waltz in like they did in Iraq, think twice. This will be a long, long war and they will have to reinstate a draft. Why? Our generals have requested for additional troops and were turned down simply because there were no troops to send! Iraq should have had almost 4-500k troops. We undermaned the job by sending in only ~200k troops. What do you think will happen if we start another war with Iran? Iran, Iraq, Afganistan...I don't think we have enough people in the entire United States to take on that kind of job even if we wanted to....:rolleyes: Do we REALLY want to send over 1 million troops just to the middle east? I sure don't.

It's time to start being real America..... too many people fail to read the news, learn about other peoples cultures, or care about world events. I hope more people spend time on these kinds of issues, and go out and vote!

I'm not trying to be Anti-American here, because I am an American. But I am very worried that too many people like to listen to sound bites from Bush, and don't realize the nonsense they are being spoon fed......

/rant.

Edit: Journalism. I hope we get some serious journalism as well. Have you ever noticed that in a British Press confrence they hold the person up to what they say? Here, everything is staged, questions written before hand. Are you kidding me!? Let's have an open debate here, last time I checked, we live in a democracy! We need more Charlie Roses' and less Fox..................I can't say it together.........news.

You do know, the majority of Iranian citizens are pro-US??.........how about using that to our advantage instead of making them turn against us, which WILL happen if we go to war with Iran..... Iran, like China, has a HUGE population of young people that are of the military age. Think about that....

Edit 2: Oops, almost forgot. Not only do we not talk to Iran or Syria. We talk about democracy in the ME yet we chose not to recognize a democractically elected Hezbollah......... double standards................

I guess the problem is not "What do you do with a problem like Ahmadinejad?" The problem is what do you do with nonsense and ignorance on both sides of the fence? Ans. You get them out of office to start with!

I fear we are heading down the WRONG path with this whole terrorism business and in the process sacrificing what is essential....our civil liberties.
 
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  • #6
Astronuc
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I heard a comment, possibly yesterday, that Bush is backing of the 'democracy' rhetoric, because there are non-democratic allies, e.g. Saudi Arabia, who feel a little uncomfortable with it. :rolleyes: I think the term used was 'back-pedalling' on democracy - and it seems to be very obvious to millions of people in Islamic countries.
 
  • #7
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Here is a map of Iran and Iraq juxtapose.

http://www.usip.org/images/hp/2005/0906_iraniraq.jpg [Broken]

Just from the map alone, you can see how much bigger Iran is from Iraq. 200k troops in Iran? Good luck. Try doubling that number and still not having enough. Because almost double is what should have been in Iraq in the first place. To stablize Iraq and fight Iran, realistically your talking at the very minimum 800k troops, and that's probably a conservative number.

George Vidal said it best in the move, http://whywefight.com" [Broken]

We live in the United States of Amnesia
:biggrin:
 
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  • #8
War is unlikely,the US cannot afford it, which is why I steered clear of overtly suggesting it.

population of Iraq.26,074,906

population of Iran.68,017,860

But since you mentioned it :smile:

The only way the US governement would be able to sell military action to its people now, given it's history, is if Iran actually had nukes and started pointing them at the world. Since I personally doubt this is going to happen, that is to say doubt that nukes are going to materialise in the country it's a moot point.

I quite agree war would be literal and financial suicide for the US. The greatest enemy to the US people in my eyes atm is George Bush, what the country needs is to take care of itself, it spends too much time wasting billions on sticking it's meat hooks into every conflict that rears it's head, as if bullying countries is the high art of diplomacy.

Put your own state of affairs into order then consider the rest of the world once you've trimmed the beard, lost a little fat and put on your pulling shirt.:smile: The US needs to reinvent it's image in my opinion, in the wake of the mess that is the Bush regime.

I also agree with Astronuc that the the idea of wait and see seems the best course of action atm, If you managed to read the UN document I sugest you read Irans response at the end, it's very indicative to my mind of an actual feeling of being picked on by bullies, and they feel it is unjustified and without cause. That's something I can currently agree with, at least untill the IAEI shows me clear evidence of their nuclear weapon machinations, then there is no sense in claiming that they are doing something now is there? Habeus Corpus anyone?

Here's a small excerpt of the last passage, it's a long old read but I recomend it.

Concluding, he said it was pertinent to ask what the motive was behind the long-standing urge of some permanent members to bring Iran before the Council. Was it anything but pressure and coercion? That approach would not lead to any productive outcome and, in fact, it could only exacerbate the situation. The people and Government of Iran were not seeking any confrontation and had always shown their readiness to engage in serious and result-oriented negotiation, based on mutual respect and equal footing. They had also showed, time and again, their resilience in the face of pressure, threat, injustice and imposition.
 
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  • #9
Gokul43201
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They could do this:
UNITED NATIONS — With increasing signs that several fellow Security Council members may stall a United States push to penalize Iran for its nuclear enrichment program, Bush administration officials have indicated that they are prepared to form an independent coalition to freeze Iranian assets and restrict trade.

http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/la-fg-iran26aug26,0,1409761.story?track=mostviewed-homepage [Broken]

I'm not sure about the details of implementation (particularly the freezing of assets), but that approach (trade restrictions) is one I'm mostly in support of. To be precise, I think such an approach is fair, I'm not sure though, if it's the wisest option on the table.
 
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  • #10
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Gokul43201 said:
They could do this:


http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/la-fg-iran26aug26,0,1409761.story?track=mostviewed-homepage [Broken]

I'm not sure about the details of implementation (particularly the freezing of assets), but that approach (trade restrictions) is one I'm mostly in support of. To be precise, I think such an approach is fair, I'm not sure though, if it's the wisest option on the table.

Well, Iran has had sanctions with the US for the last 30 years. They froze $12 billion of Iranian money in 1979. Factor in the interest and that is an amazing amount of money. http://www.foreignaffairs.org/19811201faessay8269/robert-caswell/economic-sanctions-and-the-iran-experience.html [Broken]

Russia has 25 million Muslims on its boarder with Iran that speak Farsi. You think Russia is going to anger them and Iran? They learned their lesson in Afganistan already.

What are you going to do, sanction a major oil producing country so that gasoline becomes $10 a gallon? Unrealistic.
 
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  • #11
kyleb
There is no need for more sanctions as long as Israel has every right to defend herself:
JERUSALEM -- Israel has appointed a top general to oversee a war against Iran, prompting speculation that it is preparing for possible military action against Tehran's nuclear program.
Maj. Gen. Elyezer Shkedy, Israel's air force chief, will be overall commander for the "Iran front," military sources told the London Sunday Telegraph.
News of the appointment comes just days before a United Nations deadline expires for Iran to give up its nuclear program, which Western governments fear will be used to produce atomic weapons. Despite Iran's offer last week to engage in "serious talks" on the matter, Israel fears even more than other Western nations that the offer is simply to buy time for Tehran to secure all the technology it needs to build the bomb.
"Israel is becoming extremely concerned now with what they see as Iran's delaying tactics," said Israeli Iran analyst Meir Javedanfar. "[The planners] think negotiations are going nowhere, and Iran is becoming a major danger for Israel. Now they are getting ready for living with a nuclear Iran or letting the military take care of it."
The prospect of Israel "living with" a nuclear Iran appears remote. Last week, Giora Eiland, Israel's former national security adviser, told reporters that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would "sacrifice half of Iran for the sake of eliminating Israel."

http://www.washtimes.com/world/20060827-122213-1606r.htm
 
  • #12
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Iran does not hide its intentions to destroy Israel.
Iran is run by a fanatic regime that hangs 16 year old raped girls and stones mothers to death in front of hundreds. Note these are not anecdotal examples.
Iran has destabilized the middle east for years by exporting terror into other countries, see the latest Lebanese conflict and the Buenos Aires bombings. One cannot simply look at whether or not they have started wars, that is all but irrelevant in these times.
Note Ahmedinejad is not the root of the problem. The real men running the show are the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the Council of Guardians.
http://www.rferl.org/featuresarticle/2004/01/280f9a59-88b6-489b-bd03-f76267db36fa.html" [Broken].
 
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  • #14
Hurkyl
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Schrodinger's Dog said:
The US uses rhetoric that says he is absolutely looking for weapons, despite it having no intelligence to support this.
I'm pretty sure that when this came up a while back, we had quotes of him actually saying he wanted nukes. (and wanted to nuke Israel, because while they could obliterate Israel, Israel could only damage the Muslim world)


Astronuc said:
One could simply wait.

Ahmadinejad could actually be sincere about peaceful uses for enrichment.
The reason to wait is because you think the expected cost of action is greater than the expected cost of inaction. It is not a reasonable policy to wait simply because the possibility of a peaceful outcome exists.


cyrusabdollahi said:
They have every right to pursue nuclear technology if they want to.
That's debatable, of course. On the philosophical level (on what principles do you grant rights to a government?) and on a more concrete level -- they signed the non-proliferation treaty. :tongue:

Do we REALLY want to send over 1 million troops just to the middle east? I sure don't.
I do if and only if it's better than the alternatives. It's not a reasonable policy to reject a plan just because you don't like what it entails. :tongue:


Gokul43201 said:
but that approach (trade restrictions) is one I'm mostly in support of.
I've been wondering about that for a while. Economic warfare is the new "gentleman's war" -- is it really a better alternative? Is it more effective than military warfare? Or less damaging?
 
  • #15
Astronuc
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Yonoz said:
Iran does not hide its intentions to destroy Israel.
They definitely need to change that attitude. Iran's Council of Guardians needs to get a grip on reality and recognize Israel's right to exist, and peacefully so among its Islamic (and Christian) neighbors.
Yonoz said:
Iran is run by a fanatic regime that hangs 16 year old raped girls and stones mothers to death in front of hundreds. Note these are not anecdotal examples.
True, but I think many Muslims are opposed to such harsh behavior.
Yonoz said:
Iran has destabilized the middle east for years by exporting terror into other countries, see the latest Lebanese conflict and the Buenos Aires bombings.
I think many terrorists are homegrown and seek support from states like Iran. Certainly it appears Iran and Syria have supported either financially or logistically terrorists in other countries.
Yonoz said:
One cannot simply look at whether or not they have started wars, that is all but irrelevant in these times.
It's relevant to those countries which have been attacked. On the other hand, use of proxies for war is a significant problem.
Yonoz said:
Note Ahmedinejad is not the root of the problem. The real men running the show are the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the Council of Guardians.
So how does the west reach moderate Muslims? What credible leadership is there in the west either in US or Europe?
Yonoz said:
Iran has purchased nuclear weapons-only technology from Pakistan.
According to the article, the key issue is proliferation of 'enrichment' technology, which can be used to make enriched uranium for anything from LWR fuel to fast reactor fuel, to WG uranium. Inidividuals from Khan Research Laboratories, including Abdul Qadeer Khan, have been under investigation concerning the transfer of centrifuge technology. The uranium used in most of the world's commercial nuclear fuel is produced (enriched) by this method, so it's not weapons-only technology.
 
  • #16
Astronuc
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hurkyl said:
Gokul said:
. . . but that approach (trade restrictions) is one I'm mostly in support of.

I've been wondering about that for a while. Economic warfare is the new "gentleman's war" -- is it really a better alternative?
Actually the oil companies do not want trade sanctions against Iran. It cuts into profits, particular of the managers and executives.

The reason to wait is because you think the expected cost of action is greater than the expected cost of inaction. It is not a reasonable policy to wait simply because the possibility of a peaceful outcome exists.
Actually I would prefer a peaceful, or at least less violent solution. Bush's policy in Iraq is an unmitigated disaster, particularly for those who have been killed or wounded or displaced. Bush has demonstrated that violence is not the solution.
 
  • #17
Hurkyl
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Astronuc said:
Actually I would prefer a peaceful, or at least less violent solution.
That's the whole problem I have with your post! You're advocating a course of action because of the possibility it might lead to your preferred outcome -- you do not seem to be making any serious attempt at evaluating the likelihood of your preferred outcome, nor the consequences of your course of action should your preference not materialize.

Bush has demonstrated that violence is not the solution.
I didn't realize you thought Bush perfectly executed the violent approach!

Also, do you have any grounds for your belief that there is a "solution" to this problem? What if we're in a no-win scenario and all we can do is to try and mitigate the ensuing disaster?

Furthermore, even if there is a "solution", do you have any grounds to believe that it will be found before it's too late?


I don't have a problem with people who wish for a peaceful solution -- just those who would have us pursue it blindly. :grumpy:
 
  • #18
kyleb
Yonoz said:
http://www.rferl.org/featuresarticle/2004/01/280f9a59-88b6-489b-bd03-f76267db36fa.html" [Broken].
I just skimmed the article and it seems it is about two and a half year old speculation, could you quote what you believe backs up your conclusion?

Astronuc said:
They definitely need to change that attitude. Iran's Council of Guardians needs to get a grip on reality and recognize Israel's right to exist, and peacefully so among its Islamic (and Christian) neighbors.
They have proclaimed public support for reaching a two state solution between Israel and Palestine twice over the past few years, they even offered to attempt to mediate a deal. Our attitude got in the way of that though, we told them to piss off.
 
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  • #19
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Astronuc said:
True, but I think many Muslims are opposed to such harsh behavior.
I truly believe that, but it is irrelevant. This is a fanatic regime with little appreciation for human life.
Astronuc said:
It's relevant to those countries which have been attacked. On the other hand, use of proxies for war is a significant problem.
It's certainly become a problem. Countries are waging war on other countries without being held accountable simply because they do it under the table.
Astronuc said:
So how does the west reach moderate Muslims? What credible leadership is there in the west either in US or Europe?
It's a complex problem. There is no single unified Muslim leadership. Islamic fundamentalism is given too much weight by the west. There are ever-changing regional dynamics, historical tensions and status-quos. Take for example Iran and Syria. Iran is a theocracy; Syria is run by a military junta with a dubious record of violently oppressing religious groups - yet they cooperate, simply because it serves both leadership's interests. Iran and the Taliban, despite having much similarity, did not get along all that well, certainly not as well as Iran got along with Pakistan - another military junta state. A British-appointed royal family has ruled quite benevolently over Jordan for nearly a century. Jordan is almost entirely Palestinians, the Hashemite family is a minority, just like the misappropriately named Alawite Bashar Assad in Syria. Egypt used to be identical to Syria but is slowly turning into a democratic republic (slowly because whenever a move is made towards democracy, the public strengthens the religious revolutionaries). And Libya - well, let's just say every country has its right leaders. There probably is no single universal solution, but I think that currently (in)decisions are based on wrongful projections of western ideals and values onto other cultures.
I was once interviewed by a BBC crew. It was during the Intifada, the public here was so outraged at the BBC there were mass cancelations of cable subscription until the cable company removed it from the base plan. Off-camera, I spoke to the interviewer about BBC coverage, and he said "we report it like we see it" - I believe this is not enough. I don't think the average westerner gets enough information to really comprehend the conflict. I suppose the west should start off by educating itself. The government is not credible enough to do it, the media is too sensationalist - I guess it's up to you. :wink:
Astronuc said:
According to the article, the key issue is proliferation of 'enrichment' technology, which can be used to make enriched uranium for anything from LWR fuel to fast reactor fuel, to WG uranium. Inidividuals from Khan Research Laboratories, including Abdul Qadeer Khan, have been under investigation concerning the transfer of centrifuge technology. The uranium used in most of the world's commercial nuclear fuel is produced (enriched) by this method, so it's not weapons-only technology.
I stand corrected, but it is nevertheless quite clear from the article that the technology was transferred in a deal to allow all 3 nations: Pakistan, Iran and North Korea to benefit from each other's advances to produce a nuclear balistic missile program. Obviously some will disagree but I think they would not be so happy about having a nuclear-capable Islamic fundamentalist neighbour whose leaders repeatedly describe the destruction of their state as a noble goal.
 
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  • #20
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kyleb, allow me to diverge from our regular skirmishes.
Do you honestly believe Iran, a country with quite a bit of oil, requires a nuclear program for research purposes?
 
  • #21
Astronuc
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Hurkyl said:
That's the whole problem I have with your post! You're advocating a course of action because of the possibility it might lead to your preferred outcome -- you do not seem to be making any serious attempt at evaluating the likelihood of your preferred outcome, nor the consequences of your course of action should your preference not materialize.
Certainly a peaceful solution is the most desirable outcome.

Hurkyl said:
I didn't realize you thought Bush perfectly executed the violent approach!
I don't, nor did I state as such. The US forces in both Gulf Wars demonstrated how imperfectly violence is used. There was much 'collateral' damage in Iraq, aka many non-combatants - children, women, men, elderly, none of whom were involved in war - who were killed due to errant bombs and artillery fire.

Hurkyl said:
Also, do you have any grounds for your belief that there is a "solution" to this problem? What if we're in a no-win scenario and all we can do is to try and mitigate the ensuing disaster?
I don't see that the situation is "no-win" at this point.

Hurkyl said:
Furthermore, even if there is a "solution", do you have any grounds to believe that it will be found before it's too late?
This needs to be further explored. I don't believe 'it is too late'.

Hurkyl said:
I don't have a problem with people who wish for a peaceful solution -- just those who would have us pursue it blindly. :grumpy:
I am not as naive, nor blind, as one seems to be inferring. I prefer to 'give peace a chance'.

Yonoz said:
Do you honestly believe Iran, a country with quite a bit of oil, requires a nuclear program for research purposes?
No, Iran does not need a nuclear program at this time. It has sufficient oil and gas reserves to meet current demands, and still export oil and gas.

Even so, if the Russians build VVER and supply fuel, Iran does not need an enrichment program. Iran could also use CANDU reactors, which use heavy water, so that enrichment is not necessary. On the other hand, CANDUs (and LWRs) produce Pu-239, which could be diverted to a nuclear weapons program.

I think the nuclear program is a matter of national pride and prestige, and since N. Korea, Pakistan and India have nuclear weapons, I am sure that many in the Iranian government think Iran should also have nuclear weapons, even though Iran signed NPT (I presume before 1979).

If Iran pursues a nuclear energy program, then they must be willing to submit to the same oversight by IAEA as any other country.
 
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  • #22
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Hurkyl said:
I'm pretty sure that when this came up a while back, we had quotes of him actually saying he wanted nukes. (and wanted to nuke Israel, because while they could obliterate Israel, Israel could only damage the Muslim world)

Can you find this quote, I would be interested to see it.


That's debatable, of course. On the philosophical level (on what principles do you grant rights to a government?) and on a more concrete level -- they signed the non-proliferation treaty. :tongue:

Does that treaty have to do with nuclear weapons or nuclear technology? I do not think it is debatable. They are an independent sovern nation. They are not our proxy to do as we tell them to.


I do if and only if it's better than the alternatives. It's not a reasonable policy to reject a plan just because you don't like what it entails. :tongue:

Well, then I suggest you be the first one to sign up for combat when the war starts if you believe in it so staunchly. :wink:
 
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  • #23
Gokul43201
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cyrusabdollahi said:
Well, Iran has had sanctions with the US for the last 30 years. They froze $12 billion of Iranian money in 1979. Factor in the interest and that is an amazing amount of money. http://www.foreignaffairs.org/19811201faessay8269/robert-caswell/economic-sanctions-and-the-iran-experience.html [Broken]

What are you going to do, sanction a major oil producing country so that gasoline becomes $10 a gallon? Unrealistic.
As I mentioned before, I'm not convinced of the effectiveness of the proposal. But going by your post, if the US has had sanctions on trade with Iran for the last 30 years, why should a new one inflate oil prices when the old ones didn't?

Cyrus said:
Russia has 25 million Muslims on its boarder with Iran that speak Farsi. You think Russia is going to anger them and Iran? They learned their lesson in Afganistan already.
I did not call for all countries to join in a trade restriction. I think however, that it's only fair that countries that feel threatened (directly or indirectly) act to pressurize Iran against threatening them. Countries that have more to lose from antagonism can feel free to step away from such a move.

Hurkyl said:
I've been wondering about that for a while. Economic warfare is the new "gentleman's war" -- is it really a better alternative? Is it more effective than military warfare? Or less damaging?
I'm pretty sure there isn't one optimum for all situations. Right now, for instance, the military option is all but essentially infeasible.
 
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  • #24
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I did not call for all countries to join in a trade restriction. I think however, that it's only fair that countries that feel threatened (directly or indirectly) act to pressurize Iran against threatening them. Countries that have more to lose from antagonism can feel free to step away from such a move.

Well, at the end of the day I think it will be the US (which already has had sanctions for the last 30 years, and Israel (which doesnt talk to Iran either) that will have sacantions. China wants oil. Iran has oil. There not going to pressure Iran the way the US wants them to. Neither is Russia. I think the world is done being our puppets.

I'm pretty sure there isn't one optimum for all situations. Right now, for instance, the military option is all but essentially infeasible.

Yes, this is true.
 
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Astronuc said:
Even so, if the Russians build VVER and supply fuel, Iran does not need an enrichment program. Iran could also use CANDU reactors, which use heavy water, so that enrichment is not necessary. On the other hand, CANDUs (and LWRs) produce Pu-239, which could be diverted to a nuclear weapons program.
I'm sure there are solutions that will allow Iran to benefit from nuclear energy without having to produce it themselves, let alone enrich their own Uranium. Why doesn't Russia offer to supply Iran with a set quota of electricity? I'm sure the rest of the world will be happy to subsidise it generously. Let them build Iranian reactors on Turkish territory, with international monitors. Iran simply threw the monitors out of Iran when it felt like it. Why have they not taken the reportedly generous offer by the UNSC? I'm sure the US would rather pay Iran in cash than allow them to have nuclear capability. Let's stop the pretence, this is not about cheap megawatts.

Astronuc said:
I think the nuclear program is a matter of national pride and prestige, and since N. Korea, Pakistan and India have nuclear weapons, I am sure that many in the Iranian government think Iran should also have nuclear weapons, even though Iran signed NPT (I presume before 1979).
That's probably a major factor in Iran's leadership's decisions to carry on with their nuclear program.

In any case, the west should consider whether it is wise to allow the current leadership, given its record and policy, the capability to produce their own nuclear weapons? The west is having a hard time controlling them as it is, I'll throw in a scenario I just thought up now (one can spend ages discussing "what if"): Iran and Syria grow closer. Iran supplies Syria with financial and military backing, and they sign various mutual defence treaties. Now Syria is unhappy about Israel for something, maybe stalled negotiations, or maybe a Palestinian group in Syria gets a few rockets and decides to attack Israel. Israel responds to a limited scale attack, the Syrians choose to play a tough stance, and before you know it the IDF is bombarding Damascus, like back in 1973. Assad's still defiant, and Israel wants to deliver the final blow to end a bloody war. Iran threatens to retaliate with nuclear weapons. What's the world going to do then? Send another peacekeeping force?
 
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