Wednesday, November 27, 2013

If You Like Your Uranium Enrichment Plan... Part One

Long post today, on a serious topic. Refill your beverage and commence reading.

Of all the things obama has done to 'fundamentally transform' this country, none have the potential for disaster on a global scale so much as his recent deal with Iran to rein in its nuclear program. He has quite literally given madmen access to a weapon of mass destruction. In doing so, he has further weakened U.S. power, prestige, and credibility in the international community.

How, you ask? There are three major flaws in the agreement.

First, and most critical, Iran retains its capability and infrastructure to produce weapons grade uranium. The agreement calls for Iran to restrict uranium enrichment from its natural concentration (0.7%) to 3.5%. 3.5% doesn't sound like much, especially when a concentration level of 90% is needed to produce nuclear weapons. But that's misleading.
...the enrichment process for weapons grade uranium is highly non-linear…the level of enrichment accelerates as the process continues. That means that most of the cumulative effort required to produce highly enriched uranium (HEU) comes at the earliest stages. About 90% of the total effort required is expended to reach the 5% level.
The agreement states that Iran can keep all of the 5% enriched uranium it already has processed. From there to weapons level uranium requires only 10% of the time and effort needed to attain the 5% level. Plus Iran isn't required to dismantle or destroy any of its uranium enrichment infrastructure or facilities (it is required to uncouple or remove links between some centrifuges, which is easily reversible if and when Iran decides to do so).

Iran also retains the capability "to continue all aspects of its nuclear-weapons program the agreement does not cover (centrifuge manufacturing and testing; weaponization research and fabrication; and its entire ballistic missile program)."

Second, Iran's 'right' to enrich uranium has been confirmed.
...the text of the agreement says that Iran can keep enriching (uranium to 3.5%) ... and that the final agreement ... will provide for “a mutually defined enrichment program with practical limits and transparency measures to ensure the peaceful nature of the program.”
That sure sounds like acknowledging their "right to enrich," not matter what the clown tandem of barry and kerry say.

Taking that one step further, the obama administration has bestowed a patina of legitimacy on a rogue nation ruled by religious fanatics.
...Iran has gained legitimacy. This central banker of international terrorism and flagrant nuclear proliferator is once again part of the international club.  Much as the Syria chemical-weapons agreement buttressed Bashar al-Assad, the mullahs have escaped the political deep freezer.
Not only that, the agreement highlights yet again America's growing impotency and irrelevance under obama in the Mid East. Remember how Russia under Putin punked the U.S. in the Syria chemical weapons fiasco? This is worse.

Third, lifting current sanctions against Iran boosts their power and prestige in several ways. In addition to an immediate influx of badly needed cash (estimates place the Iranian industry overall at twenty percent of capacity, with only two-to-three months’ hard currency reserves), Iran will now be able to recruit foreign investment. Once other countries and multinational corporations invest substantial sums in Iran, they will become de facto lobbyists for it.
...a mere six-months’ easing of sanctions will make it extraordinarily hard for the West to reverse direction, even faced with systematic violations of Iran’s nuclear pledges.  Major oil-importing countries (China, India, South Korea, and others) were already chafing under U.S. sanctions, sensing President Obama had no stomach either to impose sanctions on them, or pay the domestic political price of granting further waivers.
Finally, and most importantly, this agreement increases the likelihood of unilateral action by Israel, while at the same time stacking the deck of world opinion against such action.
... the deal leaves the basic strategic realities unchanged. Iran’s nuclear program was, from its inception, a weapons program, and it remains one today. Even modest constraints, easily and rapidly reversible, do not change that fundamental political and operational reality.

Undoubtedly, an Israeli strike during the interim deal would be greeted with outrage from all the expected circles.  But that same outrage, or more, would also come further down the road.  In short, measured against the expected reaction even in friendly capitals, there is never a “good” time for an Israeli strike, only bad and worse times.  Accordingly, the Geneva deal does not change Israel’s strategic calculus even slightly...

So in truth, an Israeli military strike is the only way to avoid Tehran’s otherwise inevitable march to nuclear weapons, and the proliferation that will surely follow. Making the case for Israel’s exercise of its legitimate right of self-defense has therefore never been more politically important.
That's why Benjamin Netanyahu is so outraged - and rightly so. Once again obama has undercut our primary ally in the Middle East. He's stabbing in the back the only truly democratic and progressive country in that region. Hell, even the Saudis are opposed to the deal, and are making cautious advances to the Israelis. That's how bad this agreement is.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend...

So there you have it. An obama administration that has consistently been hostile towards Israel has brokered a deal enhancing the economy, nuclear weapons capability, and international prestige of a rogue state that exports terrorism and terrorists. At the same time, barry and his stooge kerry are misleading the rest of the world about their intentions and the ramifications of the deal.

Sound familiar?

No comments: