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Why Iran’s Nuclear Weapons Must be Stopped

FOR years, Iranian nuclear scientists have been involved in unexplained accidents and plane crashes.

And will it not be unwise for a knowledgeable mind to attribute these incidences to accidents or mere happenstance?

The United States and Israel have a long history of amity and have cooperated on many grounds, including intelligence gathering much of which has to do with Iran and Saddam’s Iraq.

A good example was the 2009 Stuxnet cyber attack that stymied the logic board that controlled the spinning centrifuges at the Natanz enrichment facility.

In the case of the 2011 plane crash, Russian security sources confirmed that the dead scientists worked at the Iranian controversial Bushehr nuclear plant on the Persian Gulf.

So far, there have been five identifiable pillars to Israel’s approach to crippling Iran’s nuclear ambition.

They include the political approach, covert measure, counter-proliferation, sanctions, and force regime change.

Of these, besides being preemptive, the most tantalizing has been the covert measure, which analysts believe has resulted in the deaths of several nuke experts in the oil-rich country.

Although Israel continues to deny complicity, a former Mossad officer, who goes by the pseudonym Michael Ross, confirmed that these attacks on Iranian nuclear experts bear the hallmarks of an Israeli operation.

According to him, ‘This tactic is not a new one for the Mossad, and worked very effectively against Egypt’s rocket program in the 1960s.’

In the said period, the scientists involved in the project were assassinated and the programme suffered immensely.

But, is Tehran really seeking to be armed with dangerous weapons as alleged? What evidence is available to prove this?

From Yukiya Amano, the United Nations atomic agency chief, came the report recently that Tehran wasn’t cooperating enough to enable the agency provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran.

Two deadly explosions, in the recent past, around the country’s steel complex seem to support claims that Iran is defiantly engaged in something shady.

A recent media report went into great detail about the involvement, with Tehran, of a nuclear proliferator, A. Q. Khan, a Pakistani, who reportedly ran a black market how-to nuclear operation that benefited the likes of Iran, North Korea and Gaddafi’s Libya.

In this Fox News exclusive, documents, photos and a dramatic confession letter Khan wrote to his wife, detailing how he sold nuclear weapon materials to Iran, North Korea and Libya were presented.

Iran has however denied all accusations that it is seeking to develop nuclear weapons, insisting that its programme is aimed at generating electricity.

But why would anyone seek to stop a sovereign state from engaging in any activity it so desires?

Is Iran not a state like nuke-armed Israel? The answer isn’t far-fetched. Albeit countries are the same – at least based on their appearances on the world map – their ideologies and philosophies are poles apart.

Long before Pakistan became a nuclear power, India was already armed with the same weapon and never posed a threat to any country, including its belligerent neighbour, Pakistan.

But upon acquisition, Pakistan kept threatening to unleash it on India, a development that led India to device means of responding, to totally wipe out Pakistan, should the latter ever set out to translate its threat into action (see the incisive work Why Nations Go To War by John Stoessinger).

Yet the two are countries but with distinct temperaments. It is partly for this same reason of hostility and incontinence that everyone should naysay Iran’s foray into nuclear power.

No one begrudges a child for having large teeth if he has enough flesh to cover them.

But primitive Iran lacks such flesh and must thus be deterred willy-nilly.

The country’s antecedents show it will not hesitate to unleash its nuclear warheads on others, especially Israel and Saudi Arabia, at the slightest provocation.

Besides the fact that Tehran does not recognise Israel as a state and has thus offered bounties to Palestinian families of suicide bombers, it had once threatened to ‘wipe the Zionist state out of the map.’

Three years back, on September 24, 2009, about 50 Christian leaders in the US called on world leaders to take urgent action to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, warning that a nuclear-armed Iran would ‘almost certain[ly]‘ spark an arms race in the Middle East.

‘For the world’s most dangerous regime to obtain the world’s most dangerous weapons is something that neither the United States nor the community of civilized nations can allow,’ the leaders asserted.

Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, voiced a similar concern, explaining that if Iran obtained nuclear weapons it could ‘bring terrorism beyond our wildest dreams.’

It is believed that a nuke-armed Iran will lead to a multi-nuclear Middle East, even undermining the state of Israel; bring about a nightmare scenario in which numerous authoritarian and radical regimes, such as Sudan’s, Syria’s and Yemen’s, possess nuclear weapons; encourage other potential proliferators around the world, including terrorist groups such as Al Shabab, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram and Taliban, to toe this dangerous path; and making Hamas and Hezbollah to be more aggressive and daring with a nuclear-armed Iran standing behind them like an agent provocateur of a kind.

Like the castrated giant called African Union, the UN is preoccupied with debates and fruitless inspections.

Israel, the potential target of a nuke-armed Iran, is busy with some ingenious means of stymieing the effort, including a missile defence system.

Before it achieves that, should it attack Iran as it seems determined to do and as it once did Iraq’s Osirak Nuclear Research Facility in June 1981, it may enjoy some global support.

But such air strikes will retard the programme only for a couple of years while spurring the Iranians on to heightened efforts, just as a large number of its students have recently decided to offer courses in Nuclear Physics in the wake of Mostafa Roshan’s death.

Besides heightening tension in the Middle East, such attack will have disastrous effects on the global oil price, though to Nigeria’s advantage, and may not do anything in destroying the already acquired nuclear knowledge.

Expectedly, Iran will hit back, especially in blocking the Straits of Hormuz, which US may not tolerate; sponsor suicide attacks against Israeli interest, as has just happened in Georgia and India; and arm Taliban fighters, with possible spillover effect on the FIFA U-17 Female Championship in Baku, Azerbaijan, later this year.

Beyond any of the five approaches Israel has adopted, liaising with the Chinese, Pakistanis, Russians (and uranium-rich Niger) may help halt Iran’s nuclear programme.

The ball lies in the court of this triumvirate to stop aiding and abetting Tehran.

The UN Secretary General also needs to act promptly on the report of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

More economic sanctions may also help deter Iran which lacks domestic refining capacity as it imports some 40 per cent of its refined petroleum products, a development that may make it jettison its ambition.

While one may not support the murderous CIA, Mossad and M16, something urgent needs to be done about Tehran’s ambition.

The world, including African countries, should not fold its arms and watch a country like Iran achieve its nuclear ambition.

The consequences will be more devastating than the overall threat a nuclear-armed apartheid South Africa once posed to Africa, especially a highly opinionated Nigeria.

Imagine the threat Al Shabab will pose to the Horn of Africa, especially Kenya and Ethiopia, or the future of Nigeria in the face of a Maitasine or Boko Haram that has access to a nuke-armed Iran.

In the meantime, while the US and UE sanctions bite hard on Iran and Israel continues to deplete the ranks of Iran’s nuclear scientists through state-sponsored assassinations, no one should rejoice at such murders, but one must not rush to assist or even sympathize with Tehran either.

Legend Joseph
March 19, 2012
Related link – http://tinyurl.com/6u9ejfd
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