No-one agrees on what was agreed with Iran, but in any case the precedents are hardly encouraging.
By this time hordes of commentators have chewed over Mr. Obama’s “historic” agreement. Some aspects, however, have been overlooked or misinterpreted:
1. It is not an agreement. It is a “framework” for an eventual agreement to be forged in the period between now and June 30th when the actual “agreement” is to be signed.
2. There is no agreement as to what was agreed. At least three versions of the framework are in circulation: that of the State Department, that of the French and that of the Iranians. They disagree fundamentally on what was agreed.
3. Why does Iran need all those “research and development” nuclear facilities that were apparently agreed to by the six negotiating powers? For nuclear power? That technology is many decades old and can be bought off the shelf from the Russians, the French, the Americans or elsewhere. For medical research? That would require one small facility. Then what for? Why, for the development of the capacity to make nuclear weapons, of course. There is no other possible use.
4. Military facilities are left out of the “agreement”. Why? Military facilities can be used to achieve nuclear “breakout” as well as civilian facilities
5. Finally, according to the State Department version, Iran will achieve nuclear breakout within two to three months. Come again? If they are right that means that the Iranians will achieve breakout BEFORE June 30th! So what is the point of the whole exercise?
In 1994 President Clinton made a television address from the White House remarkably similar in wording to that of Mr. Obama following the Lausanne meetings. What was it about? It celebrated an “agreement” reached with North Korea to end that country’s nuclear weapons program. Subsequently North Korea violated every aspect of that agreement with impunity, and is now a nuclear power
The same will happen again with Iran unless (1) sanctions are maintained and strengthened leading to regime change in Iran or (2) military force is used to destroy or seriously damage Iran’s nuclear facilities.
The alternative is living (or dying) with a nuclear weapons-capable fanatical, tyrannical, aggressive regime much more dangerous for the rest of the world than North Korea will ever be.
Too bad the meetings weren’t held in the holy city of Qom. In that case the comparison with the betrayal of Czechoslovakia by the British and French in 1938 would have been even more perfect. That famous meeting, leading to an “historic” agreement, was of course, held in Munich, birthplace of the Nazi Party.
Norman A. Bailey, Ph.D., is Adjunct Professor of Economic Statecraft at The Institute of World Politics, Washington, DC, and teaches at the Center for National Security Studies and Geostrategy, University of Haifa.
*Originally published by Globes [online], Israel business news on April 6, 2015 ©