Iranian Nuclear Energy Program

Monday, October 15, 2007

Pirouz Mojtahed-Zadeh 

An excuse for US Neo-Cons to wage war on the people of Iran:

There are movements towards massing real challenges to the uni-polar geopolitical system that the ultra-right tendencies of the so-called Neo-Cons in the United States of America have created. No where in the world this challenge is more visible that the region of Eurasia and with the expansion of the geopolitical role of the Shanghai grouping has in deed caused noticeable retreat in the expansion of US-Israeli influence in Central Asia and the Caspian Sea and Shanghai’s invitation of Iran to join it as an observer and emphatic expression of support for Iran’s right to peaceful use of nuclear energy is an indication of its intention to signal its geopolitical role vis-avis the existing uni-polar system. What follows here is in reality an epilogue to my speech of 4 July 2007 at the EU Parliament, and it is because the danger of war on Iran is being increased on daily basis.

The neo-cons have waged wars of devastation on Afghanistan, Iraq, and Lebanon all of which happen to be Moslem nations, and now they are planning to wage war on an “Islamic Republic”, which if it happens, will set the Christian West against Moslem East and makes Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations a reality. To reach this monstrous goal, the unholy alliance between Israeli, US Neo-Cons and their new allies in France are making an effective use of monopolizing news media and have turned the so-called international media into a very effective tool in their propaganda war, thus subjecting international public opinion to a well orchestrated campaign of disinformation and misinformation. In other word, they demonize Moslem nations in the public international public opinion and then unleash their war machine on them, committing the most horrific crimes against humanity, as has been the case in all the three countries mentioned hitherto.

George Bush and Dick Cheney seem to have found themselves on the point of make or break and in order to save themselves from their present position as the undisputed losers of Iraqi, Afghan and Lebanese wars, they have decided to start their ultimate aim of a war of the worlds between the Christian West and the Moslem East, by starting the war on Iran, without bothering with the issue of finding an excuse for it. They seem increasingly not concerned with the issue of prior justification for war and want to leave finding justifications for later. Nevertheless, since the strategy of turning the issue of Iran’s nuclear energy program into a pretext for starting a war and/or imposing crushing economic sanctions against Iran is still going on, they have decided to allow those efforts to continue, albeit their resulting is clearing Iran of all false accusations laid upon her by the United States and Israel. El-Baradei’s expression of impatience with the US lies and the media campaign has started to sound so similar to Hans Blix’s expression of impatience with the American lies leading to the war on Iraq.

While in his report of 10 September 2007 to the board of governors of the IAEA, Director General of that UN body described the agreements between his Agency and Iran as an “important step in the right direction” (1), the US government described the same development as “an attempt by the Iranian government to distract from its intention of developing nuclear weapons” (2). This attempt to sabotage progress in the settlement of the issue of Iran’s nuclear energy program leaves no doubt once again that not only is the United States aware of the fact that there is no strategic threat from Iran’s nuclear energy program, but also there is no willingness in the White House to settle the crisis that is created over it.

The reason for this is quite obvious to me. The United States has reiterated its intention to effect “regime change” in Iran by making an excuse of whatever issue that could justify waging wars or crippling sanctions on the people of Iran. The first excuse was that Iran was exporting its revolution to the neighbouring states. Saddam Hussein was armed and encouraged to wage a war of devastation on the people of Iran with more than one million dead and well over a thousand billion dollars of devastation with no result for anyone except that it united the people of Iran with the regime that America wanted to change, which in turn, guaranteed IRI’s survival in its shaky start. Then there were other allegations to be exploited as excuses for starting the promised war on the people of Iran. However, although President Bush and Dick Cheney have moved to their next excuse in the shape of the implausible allegations that the IRI supports Al-Qaeda and Taliban terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan respectively, to the detriment of its own peace and security, efforts to use the issue of Iran’s nuclear energy program as an excuse to start the war, is still in full swing.

The US-Israeli Dimension

Sadly, with their unfounded fear of an Iranian bomb, the United States and Israel have made the best use of their monopoly control of major news media to prevent the world from seeing Iran's legitimate quest for nuclear energy to provide for its critical energy needs. It is, however, the recognition of this national need which is essential for holding a meaningful dialogue with Tehran, or to deter it from the possibility of expanding its nuclear technology to bomb making. To this end they ignore the fact that:

1- It was Washington that encouraged Iran in 1970s to go for nuclear energy to confront its fast developing needs for energy in the 1980s and beyond. Washington signed an agreement with Iran in July 1978 which stipulated, among other things, US export of nuclear technology to Iran, and material and expertise in searching for uranium deposits.

2- With an annual growth of 6 to 8 percent in demand for electricity and a population estimated to reach 100 million before 2025, Iran cannot rely exclusively on oil and gas for its energy need. Iran's current production level of 3.5 million barrels p/d is increasingly geared toward domestic consumption, which has grown by more than 280% since 1979 revolution. If this trend continues, Iran will become a net oil importer beyond 2010, a catastrophe for a country that relies on oil for 80 percent of its foreign currency and 45 percent of its annual budget (3).

3- The importance of diminishing Iran's fears and replacing threats against Iran's territorial integrity by acknowledgment of her constructive conflict-management role in the region. This would achieve a lot more toward Iranian nonproliferation than war, or years, or even decades, of sanctions. This, in turn, requires a willingness by the United States to recognize Iran's important role in regional stability, as demonstrated by her cordial relations with the government of Hamid Karzai in Kabul and its endorsement of the elected government in Baghdad, as well as, negotiating with the US on Iraqi security. These, of course, will simultaneously bring into open the fact that the crisis over Iran’s nuclear energy program is a crisis of choice, not necessity (4) and threats are not the way to influence Iran (5).

“Nation change” replaces “regime change”

Neo-cons in Washington have made no secret of the fact that they prosecuted the issue of Iran’s nuclear energy program to a large extent as an excuse to implement their well publicized strategy of “regime change” against the Islamic Republic in Iran. In a similar strategy the United States succeeded to change the Baath regime in Iraq by creating one of the most fearsome terrorist crises in the Middle East, but its failure so far to change the regime in Iran seems to be the core reason for Washington and Tel Aviv to engage in clandestine subversive operations inside Iran encouraging separatist movements among Pan-Turk, Pan-Kurd, Pan-Arab and other terrorist organizations in Azerbaijan, Kurdistan, Khuzestan and Baluchistan of Iran.

Former Israeli Deputy Prime Minister, Shimon Perez brought this information to the open by publicly admitting that his country and the United States are involved in operations aimed at disintegration of Iran (6). That is to say that they have broken international rules and regulations in order to make a legal case against Iran’s nuclear energy program continued at UN Security Council level in order to pave the way for legalizing economic sanctions or military actions against Iran (7,) while conspiracy to disintegrate Iran needs no legalizing.

This is a living proof that the neo-con administration in Washington is leaving no stone unturned in proving to be the national enemy of the people of Iran, and any measure in fulfilling their strategy of changing the Islamic regime boils down to causing devastation to the people of Iran much the same way they have devastated Iraq and its people. Worst still is their expectation the we, the people of Iran, keep silent vis-à-vis these atrocities against our country and our people, and if some of us decide to defend our national dignity, our national rights and our country’s territorial integrity, the United States and Israel reduce themselves to using their agents inside and outside Iran to wage a personal war trying to discredit each one of us. Recently in a televised debate on an English language Iranian television I was accused by a White House Press staff of “taking my line from the Iranian Foreign Ministry”. I wondered if he knew that it is more than four years that I do not even take part in any gathering that leaders of IRI foreign ministry happen to be present.

How to End the Crisis

In order to prove that Iran is pursuing a clandestine nuclear weapons program, the United States enforced an extensive investigation of suspected sites in Iran by the IAEA. In spite of the US displeasure of the IAEA's impartial investigations and reports and threats against its Director General Dr El-Baradei's future in his job, reports of investigations throughout the years have cleared Iran of allegations of wrong-doing.

Moreover, it was on the basis of these inspections and reports carried out, according to the Tehran agreement between Iran and EU3 in 2003, that the IAEA Board of Governors passed resolutions in 2004, whereby recognized Iran's pledge of peaceful use of nuclear energy (8). Disappointed by these results from the IAEA investigations, some of the most influential Western media began a campaign of misinformation and disinformation. These propaganda campaign seem to have deprived international public opinion of the awareness that should Iran succumb to illegal demands of Washington and Tel Aviv in depriving herself of an independent national fuel supply, she would have left a dangerous precedence, allowing big powers interfering in peaceful internal affairs of smaller nations, and would have given up her own independence in respect of the use of nuclear energy by becoming dependant on the supplies of nuclear fuel from other countries. Though the US and Israel, supported by EU, managed to get the UNSC issue punitive resolutions against Iran, they were confronted by the unanimous demand of international community that the issue of Iran’s nuclear energy program be settled through diplomacy and negotiations.

Though the IAEA investigations of the country proved that no evidence was found indicating an Iranian intention of using nuclear industry for strategic purposes, the IAEA decided, on the instructions from Washington and Tel Aviv, as well as the European Union, to refer Iran’s dossier to the UN Security Council by invoking Chapter VII of the UN Charter, against the clearly pronounced advice of the UN Secretary General who stated that the Security Council was not the appropriate forum for debating Iran’s case, and that it was the IAEA Board of Governors then which was the authority to discuss the matter. Chapter VII of the UN Charter specifies that a country can be referred to UNSC under that chapter only if it ‘threatened the peace’, ‘broken the peace’, and/or ‘undertaken acts of aggression’. Not only did the IAEA not accuse Iran of any of those instances, but the documents the IAEA included in the dossier in support of its referral, consistently confirm that no evidence had been found that would incriminate Iran of trying to use its nuclear industry for strategic purposes.

Hence, by trying to put on trial Iran’s nuclear energy program in a process legally unjustifiable, the UN Security Council has indeed put on trial its own integrity and credibility. This has made the international community to emphatically demand for a peaceful settlement of the Iranian nuclear energy crisis through diplomacy. But a negotiated settlement has proved to be impossible because of the obstruction by the US president Bush who has imposed his precondition that “any negotiation with Iran must be subject to Iran’s suspension of uranium enrichment process”. By doing so, in reality, the United States has made sure no negotiation would commence with Iran as: if Iran was to be forced to bring to a complete halt its uranium enrichment activities as a pre-condition for negotiations, what would be left there for Iran to negotiate about?
In the latest development, the IAEA chief’s report on 11 September 2007 to the board of governors of that UN body, that the agreement with Iran had been designed to remove all the outstanding questions, met with hostile reaction from the Portuguese ambassador, acting on behalf of the European Union. This suggests that the departure of Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac from the political scene has not changed EU’s obedience of the US-Israeli instruction to keep the Iranian nuclear energy program as a pretext for inflicting war and/or devastating sanctions against her.

It is unfortunate that EU defies all aspects of political and geopolitical wisdom and behaves in this manner. The EU may try to see the wisdom of the advice by IAEA chief that: "Sanctions have to be coupled at all time with incentives and a real search for a compromise based on face saving, based on respect", and try to work out a new and independent policy to remove the current impasse which is the result of imposing precondition for negotiations. Europe did a very bad job of its, so-called, ‘mediation’ by trying to impose the US precondition on Iran instead of negotiating a way out of the stalemate which was created by that same precondition.

The united Europe is indeed well placed to overcome the stalemate by adopting a more independent position as an honest broker and try to find an alternative regime that would be more in keeping with Iran’s progress in producing enriched uranium, as has been indicated by Dr. El Baradei, the Chief IAEA Inspector, recently. Perhaps an effective international control of the level and degree of Iran’s enrichment process can be worked out through actual US or EU partnership with Iran in her uranium enrichment industry and production of nuclear fuel (9).

1- Ettelaat International quoting IRNA News Agency, London, Wednesday 12 September 2007, p. 1.
2- Abbas Edalat & Mehrnaz Shahabi, Changing course on Iran, The Guardian, London, September 10, 2007.
3- For more on these, see; Pirouz Mojtahed-Zadeh et all “Iran needs nuclear power”, International Herald Tribune, Opinion, Tuesday, October 14, 2003, as retrieved on 29 Jun 2007 16:53:26 GMT.
4- See Pirouz Mojtahed-Zadeh and Kaveh Afrasiabi, Iran’s nuclear program: A crisis of choice, not necessity, International Herald Tribune, Friday, August 12, 2005.
5- See “Threats are not the way to influence Tehran”, by Pirouz Mojtahed-Zadeh and Kaveh Afrasiabi, International Herald Tribune, Friday July 2, 2004.
6- Shimon Perez in interview with Fox News as reported by ISNA semi-official news agency: Sunday December 03, 2006.
7- See Pirouz Mojtahed-Zadeh, Letter to President George W. Bush, London 17 April 2006.
8- Pirouz Mojtahed-Zadeh, War on Iran will lead to World War III as US Neo-Cons also admit, speech at a conference on “Iran and US War Drive in Middle East”, organized by CASMII at London University, Monday 25 September 2006.
9- For more on this, see: Pirouz Mojtahed-Zadeh, text of speech to EU Parliament, Brussels 4 July 2007.