Iran refuses to disclose information about its nuclear program
David Kay , 7/17/10 – scientist best known for acting as weapons inspector in Iraq (JULY 17, “Weapons Inspectors Can't Disarm Iran”, http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704188104575083582467171848.html),
Tehran's belligerent rhetoric about its nuclear program ratchets up daily, while the international community continues to push for tougher sanctions. The hope is that economic pressure can force Iran to the bargaining table, where it will agree to abandon its weapons capabilities—and that such disarmament will be verified by inspections. As a former weapons inspector, I have very bad news: A weapons-inspection regime in Iran will not work. Inspection and verification are often viewed as ways to prevent a country from developing nuclear weapons. This is well beyond the capabilities of any conceivable inspection regime, especially given Iran's status as an almost-nuclear-capable state. The fact that inspectors must let Tehran carry out its civilian-nuclear effort while policing the military program makes the task largely unachievable. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) would need access to all of the infrastructure that could possibly aid in fashioning a nuclear weapon and potential delivery systems. They also would need a full and complete declaration of all Tehran's nuclear components, all of its uranium enrichment, all of its plutonium-related activities, and all missile testing, production and deployment sites. This is just not plausible when inspectors confront a hostile regime. Tehran has kept hidden its nuclear activities and support networks, domestic and foreign. It has refused repeated IAEA requests for interviews with the scientists and engineers responsible for large areas of its secret atomic work, and it has refused to disclose the details of its involvement with North Korea and with Pakistan's A.Q. Khan nuclear smuggling network. The result is that Iran now has a broad capability in all aspects of the complex nuclear-weapons process—from converting natural uranium into enriched uranium using gas centrifuges, to designing and testing the components of a nuclear weapon, to working on the construction of a missile-deliverable warhead, to building and testing missiles capable of delivering that nuclear warhead over significant distances. Iran ignored sanctions and continues enriching uranium – possible cover for weapon development
Ladane Nasseri, 7/15/10 – Iran-based journalist.
(July 15, “Iran Says Nuclear-Fuel Talks Should Open in September”, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/15/AR2010071501788_pf.html)
July 15 (Bloomberg) -- Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said that talks between his country and the world powers on a plan to supply fuel for a Tehran nuclear reactor should start around late September. Iran has said it is ready for negotiations with the five veto-holding members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany on a deal brokered by Turkey and Brazil in May. It proposed supplying enriched uranium in a form usable in the medical-research reactor in exchange for part of Iran's supply of the material that has yet to be transformed into fuel. "Turkey and Brazil still adopt the same stance and we welcome their presence in talks," Mottaki said today at a Tehran news conference aired live by state-run Press TV. The two countries "will see that the negotiations be held in the proper way," he said. The five Security Council members and Germany have pressed Iran to agree to talks on its nuclear program since the council voted to impose a fourth round of UN sanctions last month. The U.S. and the European Union subsequently imposed their own restrictions on Iran. Mottaki said on July 12 that the world powers had agreed to let Turkey and Brazil participate in the talks, according to Press TV. Western nations last month rejected the plan for a fuel swap because Iran vowed to continue enriching uranium after it receives a supply of the material in a form needed to run the reactor. The facility makes isotopes for medical uses such as X- rays and radiation therapy. Iran has refused international demands to suspend uranium enrichment, saying it is entitled to produce the material under the terms of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which it has signed. The U.S. and its allies say Iran's nuclear development may be cover for a weapons program. The Persian Gulf country denies the allegation and maintains the work is necessary for civilian purposes such as power generation. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on June 28 that Iran won't take part in the talks unless the six powers acknowledge that Israel already has nuclear-arms capability. Israel's policy is to neither confirm nor deny that it has such weapons. The U.S., U.K., France, China, Russia and Germany would be represented in the negotiations by the EU's foreign-policy chief, Catherine Ashton.
Prolif High – Iran Sanctions
Iran could get nukes before the end of the year and trigger Middle East prolif
Charles Robb and Charles Wald, 7/9/10 - Robb is a former Democratic senator from Virginia, Walk is a retired general and air commander (July 9, “Sanctions alone won't work on Iran”, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/08/AR2010070805070.html)
Even if they could put enough pressure on Iran to force a policy change, sanctions require time to take effect. Yet as Iran's stockpile of enriched uranium grows, the time for stopping its nuclear program rapidly dwindles. As we wrote in our just-released Bipartisan Policy Center report on Iran, two scenarios become increasingly likely in the coming months: First, current trends suggest that Iran could achieve nuclear weapons capability before the end of this year, posing a strategically untenable threat to the United States. Contrary to a growing number of voices in Washington, we do not believe a nuclear weapons-capable Iran could be contained. Instead, it would set off a proliferation cascade across the Middle East, and Iran would gain the ability to transfer nuclear materials to its terrorist allies. Meanwhile, even as it continued to threaten Israel's existence, Tehran would be able to dominate the energy-rich Persian Gulf, intensify its attempts to destabilize moderate Arab regimes, subvert U.S. efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan, violently oppose the Middle East peace process, and increase support for terrorism across the region. An Iran emboldened by nuclear weapons clearly might overstep its boundaries, pulling the Middle East and the United States into a treacherous conflict. An even more likely scenario, however, is that Israel would first attack Iranian nuclear facilities, triggering retaliatory strikes by Iran and its terrorist proxies. This would put the United States in an extremely difficult position. If we remained neutral in such a conflict, it would only invigorate Tehran, antagonize our regional allies and lead to greater conflict. On the other extreme, the United States could be dragged into a major confrontation at a time not of its choosing.