Iran Deal: Resolving a manufactured crisis

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There is hope that there will finally be a deal with Iran these days: a „comprehensive agreement on the Iranian nuclear programme“. This could/should be the beginning of the end of the legally unjustified sanctions the West has imposed on Iran since 1979.

If ever a settlement is reached, Iran had to give in on major issues: „Iran must agree to severe restrictions on its enrichment capabilities and on other aspects of its nuclear programme, under threat that the present sanctions would be maintained or even intensified.“

This threat and the restrictions are a prolongation of the violation of international rights as David Morrison and Peter Oborne write in Middle East Eye:

„There is no justification for imposing such restrictions on a sovereign state. As a non-nuclear weapon party to the NPT (Non-Proliferation Treaty) Iran is forbidden from acquiring nuclear weapons, but the treaty places no limits on civil nuclear activity under IAEA supervision.
Iran may agree to accept restrictions on its nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of sanctions, but they are doing so under duress and the restrictions are an infringement of Iran’s rights under the NPT.“

Already in their book „A Dangerous Delusion: Why the West is Wrong about Nuclear Iran“ (2013) Oborne and Morrison have convincingly argued that Iran is a „non-nuclear weapon“ party of the primary international treaty regulating nuclear activities by states, the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), and therefore:

„… has an ‚inalienable right‘ to engage in nuclear activity for peaceful purposes under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Authority (IAEA).“ 

John Kerry, the present US Secreatry of State, has agreed on this fact already 2009 in an interview with the Financial Times: „They (Iran) have a right to peaceful nuclear power and to enrichment in that purpose.“

„Despite this,“ Oborne/Morrison write, „the US has been trying for the past decade and more to coerce Iran into ceasing uranium enrichment. In recent years the US and the EU have applied ferocious sanctions on Iran in an attempt to force it to do so, damaging the well-being of millions of Iranians in the process.“

„Had the US accepted from the outset that Iran had a right to enrichment, as Kerry stated, there would have been no dispute at all, let alone one that has lasted for a decade, and no need for the present negotiations to resolve it.“

„The whole crisis has been manufactured by Washington“, the british authors conclude their analysis. And they are not alone with this judgement, not nearly.

The most famous book about the fabrication of the Iran Crisis might be Gareth Porter’s: Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare.“ He is specially blaming former Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates as „the prime mover in the 20-year-old attack on Iran based on unsubstantiated claims that Iran is manufacturing nuclear weapons.“ – „The attempt to claim that such a weapons program exists was the result of a decades long effort on the part of American neoconservatives allied with right-wing forces in Israel to legitimize hostile actions against Iran designed to effect regime change there.“ (Citations from Huffington Post).

Even George Bush knew that the claim was false back in 2007 Osborne/Morrison write. He knew it from a report of the 16 US intelligence services National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), „Iran: Nuclear Intentions and Capabilities.“ The report had „expressed the consensus view that Iran did not have an active nuclear weapons programme at that time“.

„The reaction of President George W. Bush to this good news is instructive: it made him angry. We know this because he says so in his memoir, Decision Points.
One might have thought that the president would have welcomed intelligence that Iran wasn’t developing nuclear weapons. After all, preventing the country acquiring nuclear weapons was supposed to be a major objective of his foreign policy.
But instead he was angry“ because it cut the ground from under his efforts to gain international support for what he termed dealing with Iran, which clearly went beyond ensuring that it did not possess a nuclear weapons programme. Specifically, it made it impossible for him to take military action against Iran.
‚The NIE didn’t just undermine diplomacy. It also tied my hands on the military side,‘ Bush wrote. ‚There were many reasons I was concerned about undertaking a military strike on Iran, including its uncertain effectiveness and the serious problems it would create for Iraq’s fragile young democracy. But after the NIE, how could I possibly explain using the military to destroy the nuclear facilities of a country the intelligence community said had no active nuclear weapons programme.“

In this blog „Contextlink“ I have highlighted the trials and tribulations of the Iran crisis several times. We just can keep our fingers crossed that we are really approaching the end of this dark chapter of western politics in the Middle East.

Closing remark: I am far away of turning a blind eye on Iran’s significant share in the current Middle East Disaster, but this does not justify the failures of the West.

PS:
I am collecting interesting articles I find on the net about Iran in a Flipboard Magazine „Iran“.

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