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All Sticks And No Carrots — Why Now?
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All Sticks And No Carrots

Iran has reacted rather predictably to the latest threats, as Danger Room reports Iran Wants 10 More Nuke Sites.

These extra sites will give Iran the capacity necessary to process their own fuel, and answers the question of why the latest site has so little capacity. They are dispersing the sites around the country to reduce the effects of threatened Israeli bombing raids. This is a very orthodox move in response to the threats that have been made, and should have been anticipated. This is a rational response to the constant threats.

As ‘Noz points out Iran has decided on a Netanyahu-style freeze, they will stop expanding after they have done all of the expansion they feel like. If it is acceptable for Israel, why isn’t it acceptable for Iran?

Without a consistent policy in the Mideast, the US has no policy.


1 Bryan { 12.01.09 at 1:54 pm }

Look, I realize that study and history is a difficult task for you, but Iran began “going nuclear” in the late 1950s after the US/UK coup that replaced the democratically elected prime minister with the Shah. It was part of the “Atoms for Peace” program being pushed by the Eisenhower administration.

Iran has had sanctions imposed by multiple countries, including the US, UK, and Europe based on dodgy, if not totally manufactured evidence of the type used to claim Iraq had WMDs stockpiles.

The US backed Iraq in the Iraq-Iran War, and recently the Bush administration and Israel have talked about bombing Iranian facilities.

While Iran hasn’t been totally truthful about all of the side agreements imposed on it, it have never violated the terms of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. It has the right to refine its own fuel under the NPT, and developed the secret site as a direct result of the threat to its main site by Israel.

In the existence of the United States, Iran has never attacked anyone. They are defensively minded and will certainly defend themselves when attacked. They have a minuscule defense budget. They aren’t a threat to anyone but themselves, and if it didn’t have oil, few people would even know Iran existed.

2 Bryan { 12.02.09 at 2:56 pm }

I glad you admit you were unaware that the US, Germany, and several other nations refused to deliver the equipment, or complete the construction of the nuclear power plants that Iran had all ready paid for.

Your ignorance of the situation shows the shallow approach you have to world affairs, but doesn’t stop you from advocating the killing of innocent people.

The Iranian government didn’t stop the nuclear program in 1979, the US and Europe stole their money for the program by refusing to complete contracts, and blocked their access to most sources of the technology. That is why they had to go to the black market for their program. It is the blow-back from another stupid decision.

The original system couldn’t be readily converted for weapons purposes, but the technology they bought to replace it can be. Because the West cut them off from the safer technology, the West left them no choice in the pursuit of nuclear power, which given their pollution problems and reliance on oil exports for hard currency is a cost effective solution.

3 Badtux { 12.02.09 at 6:09 pm }

A nuclear power plant doesn’t cost *that* much more than a gas-fired plant of equivalent capacity (roughly 5 times more, but the operational costs are much lower given how much foreign currency income you can make exporting the natural gas that a gas-powered plant would otherwise burn), and of course Iran has no coal so a coal-powered plant is out of the question. It’s a rational thing to do whether your name is Iran or United States of America. Sometimes I think the US is just jealous that someone is more rational than the USA when it comes to nuclear power.

And BTW, the light water reactor that the Iranians bought from the Russians is *not* useful for nuclear weapons purposes. It is a standard light water design, meaning that it produces too many contaminant plutonium isotopes to be useful for creating plutonium for nuclear weapons. If you want to look at a weapons reactor, look at the heavy water reactor that the Iranians bought from Pakistan, you can readily irradiate U-238 into Pu-239 in that guy without having to short-cycle because you don’t need to shut down a heavy water reactor to swap fuel rods. Oh wait, Pakistan is our *friend* so for some bizarre reason everybody seems to ignore that reactor (WTF?!) and focus on a program that is clearly a civilian program… it is to laugh.

– Badtux the Nuclear Penguin
.-= last blog ..Future band name =-.

4 Badtux { 12.03.09 at 10:19 am }

You should not try doing snark, Duffy old chap. You simply lack the prerequisite wit for it.

The light water reactor is almost certainly for electricity. Iran has an electricity shortage right now and will have one for the foreseeable future and light-water reactors are a piss-poor way of gaining bomb materials, enriched uranium when irradiated simply gains too many non-fissible isotopes of plutonium and you have to short-cycle the reactor (very visible and obvious) if you want to harvest fissionable plutonium. The heavy water reactor, on the other hand… well. That’s how India and Pakistan both got their bomb. You do the math. Yet it is the light water reactor and associated infrastructure that the U.S. and Israel are threatening to bomb. Clearly there is a reason other than fears of Iran gaining a nuclear weapon at work here, that’s apparent even to bird-brained penguins, much less to a supposedly thinking human being with a multi-pound brain. But then, some people seem to use their brains for paperweights rather than for thinking. It is to laugh.
.-= last blog ..The new guitar =-.

5 Bryan { 12.03.09 at 2:18 pm }

If I were a dog owner in Tehran I might care what Ahmadinejad thought, but I’m not. He has no real power in Iran. He’s a figurehead, like Governor-Generals in Commonwealth nations. Do try to keep up, Mr. Duff. It is really tiresome having to continually explain reality to you.

As Badtux notes, nothing about the reaction makes sense as anything other than attempt by politicians to divert the public from other, more urgent, problems.

Both Germany and Japan have nuclear reactors, and it wasn’t that long ago that they were rather obvious enemies of most of the world.

6 Badtux { 12.03.09 at 5:15 pm }

I’d feel quite fine about Chavez having a few nukes and the missiles to go with them. Chavez sells lots of oil to the USA, he has far more reasons to not nuke the USA than he has reasons to nuke the USA (as in, all the $$$ that his oil is getting from the USA, let us never underestimate the power of the almighty dollar as a motivator!). Let us not forget that there is only one nation in the entire history of humanity that has ever used nuclear weapons, for the simple reason that after the second nation achieved nuclear weapons, the consequences of use became too dire to countenance.

But since Chavez has expressed no desire for nuclear weapons, and, for that matter, neither has Iran, what is the point? And BTW, Duffy old chap, my point was not that Iran is seeking nuclear weapons. My point was that if Iran *were* seeking nuclear weapons, they’d be using their heavy water “research” reactor to do so, not the light water reactor and associated infrastructure largely useless for weapons use that for some reason Israel and the U.S. seem fixated upon, perhaps to distract their general public from the failings of their own respective governments…

– Badtux the Nuclear Penguin
.-= last blog ..Quote of the day =-.

7 Bryan { 12.03.09 at 11:39 pm }

To add, making demands for sanctions is not a friendly move on the part of the US administration, which hasn’t even waited for an Iranian counter offer.