Monday, February 13, 2006

More Chatter Amidst Iranian Defiance

I'm neither surprised nor disappointed by this Washington Post headline: Diplomats Say Iran Begins Uranium Enrichment

Why should I be? Every time Iran has provoked the International Community, the powers of the world have responded... with more useless talk.

The enlightened and Reasonable leaders of the world--especially Europe--have failed to learn the lessons of both the twentieth century and the schoolyard. Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Hideki Tojo and any schoolyard bully understand that appeasement only encourages aggression. The Iranian Mullahs have apparently learned this, too:
Iran reportedly has begun small-scale uranium enrichment, an initial step in the long process toward making civilian fuel or nuclear weapons, according to Western diplomats pushing for international action against Tehran.

The diplomats, who spoke Monday on the condition of anonymity, said their information was based on private statements by Iranian officials rather than actual evidence. Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency are scheduled to visit Iran's Natanz enrichment facility on Tuesday to assess Iran's research activities in the face of mounting political tensions between Tehran and the international community, diplomats said.

Some Vienna-based diplomats said reports that Iran had taken the first steps of placing uranium gas into centrifuges have not been substantiated because monitors have not yet inspected the enrichment site.

The IAEA board voted Feb. 4 to send a resolution to the United Nations Security Council expressing "serious concerns" about Iran's nuclear intentions, but delayed a debate on more definitive action until a March 6 meeting in hopes that Iran would back down from threats to restart its nuclear enrichment research.

In the week since that vote, Iranian officials have threatened to restart uranium enrichment research, but have not announced that the work has begun.

On Monday, Iranian government spokesman Gholam Hossein Elham told reporters in Tehran that Iran "will not wait for the IAEA meeting on March 6 to resume enrichment."
Iran will not stop seeking ways to develop enriched uranium. If the Islamic Republic refuses to honor its obligations under the NNPT, then the UN Security Council should impose immediate sanctions. Delaying action in the vain hope that somehow Iran will decide to cooperate only encourages the Mullahs' further intransigence.

The world can't afford to have a state sponser of terrorism become a nuclear power. Is it not disturbing enough that the US' precarious ally in the GWoT, Pakistan, already possesses nuclear armaments? Iran's determination to become the global supplier of all of Al Qaeda's nuclear holecaust needs will not bend before words. Until the West chooses action, expect more pathetic developments in this crisis to continue.