Is Iran’s nuclear stance a door opened or shut?


Obama needs to swallow his Muslim pride and work with Israel to resolve this issue.


Is Iran’s nuclear stance a door opened or shut?
July 05, 2012 12:41 PM
By David Ignatius
The Daily Star
The text of Iran’s negotiation proposal to the “P5+1” group last month makes clear what Iran’s “red lines” are in the nuclear talks, and where it might be willing to compromise.The Iranian PowerPoint presentation, obtained from a source close to the talks, stresses Iran’s status as a signatory of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, including the right to enrich uranium. Iranian negotiators devoted the first part of their presentation in Moscow to this topic, under the title: “Why enrichment is an inalienable and chartered right under the NPT.”

To buttress their argument on enrichment, the Iranians cite several passages in the treaty. Some U.S. and Israeli experts question this claim, given what they say is the vagueness of the treaty. But it’s clear that Iran sees recognition as the cornerstone of any deal. Enrichment has always been the decisive issue in nuclear talks. The P5+1 demands that Iran stop enrichment until it’s in full compliance with all U.N. resolutions. Iran insists on its NPT rights.

Some Iranian officials have indicated that Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei might accept a deal in which Iran is allowed some modest enrichment activity, but agrees to limit production below the level of roughly 800 kilograms needed to make a bomb – exporting, say, 400 kilograms each time it nears that threshold. But there’s no hint of any such “win-win” formula in the negotiating documents.

The Iranian document does signal some flexibility on the P5+1’s “confidence-building” demand that Iran stop enriching to 20 percent and export its existing stockpile of fuel. The hint comes in a vaguely worded offer to “cooperate with 5+1 to provide enriched fuel needed for TRR,” a reference to the Tehran Research Reactor that uses 20 percent fuel. Iranian sources say this opens the door for agreement to “stop and ship” production of the 20 percent fuel.

But even if a formula could be negotiated on the 20 percent issue, two big problems would remain. First, the Iranians emphatically reject the P5+1 demand that they close the enrichment facility at Fordow, buried deep under a mountain near Qom. Explaining why this facility is so heavily fortified, the document states: “Facing constant threats, we need a back-up facility to safeguard our enrichment activities.” This is precisely what worries the U.S. and Israel.

A deeper problem is that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu views the 20 percent issue as a diversion. Israeli officials see Iran’s estimated 140 kilograms of 20 percent fuel as the “cherry” on top of its stockpile of about 6,000 kilograms of 3.5 percent enriched uranium that could be pumped up within a year to make a half-dozen nuclear bombs. Netanyahu argues it would be a mistake to accept the cherry but leave Iran with the cake.

Much of the document summarizes Iran’s known positions. In a section titled “a framework for comprehensive and targeted dialogue for long-term cooperation,” Tehran proposes the basic trade-off: Iran “emphasizes . . . its opposition to nuclear weapons based on the supreme leader’s fatwa against such weapons.” In return, the U.S., the U.K., China, France, Germany and Russia would recognize Iran’s rights under the NPT, “particularly its enrichment activities.”

Iran also proposes “transparency measures” that would include cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency on what the IAEA said in March are “possible military dimensions” of Iran’s avowedly peaceful program. In exchange, the U.S. and its allies would halt their unilateral sanctions outside the U.N. framework.

Complicating matters, the Iranians also propose cooperation on “regional issues, especially Syria and Bahrain,” in exchange for their help in “combating piracy and counternarcotic activities.” This linkage of non-nuclear with nuclear issues probably won’t fly with Washington.

If the experts’ talks break down, the question will be whether negotiations might resume on another track. Some Iranians have signaled that Tehran might be ready for secret bilateral talks with the U.S., but time is short, and election-year pressures will make real bargaining difficult. Meanwhile, sanctions squeeze tighter and the threat of Israeli military action looms. One final item in the 48-page document caught my eye – a warning that Iran may need even more 20 percent fuel than anticipated because of plans for “at least four other research reactors” and for exporting enriched fuel “to other countries.”

Maybe that’s a bargaining chip, or maybe it’s a sign these negotiations really are headed into the ditch.

David Ignatius is published twice weekly by THE DAILY STAR.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on July 05, 2012, on page 7.
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10 amazing Bible verses for Guidance

10 Amazing Bible Verses for Guidance
Scriptures on God’s Guidance
Josh Wiley, Yahoo! Contributor Network

The Bible is an amazing source of wisdom from God. A Christian who seeks God’s guidance and direction in his life will find it. These ten Bible Verses about guidance can give you a better understanding about what God says on the subject. If you are doing a Bible Study on this topic, I pray you will try to memorize several of these verses by reading through them daily. Watch God change your heart. Feel free to use these Bible Verses as a devotional for your small group or Sunday School class. Please add any other Bible Verses about Guidance in the comments at the bottom of this article to make this a better resource for those that find it.
Psalm 25:9
He leads the humble in justice, And He teaches the humble His way.

John 14:16
And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever.

Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 2:6-9
For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding. He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity, Guarding the paths of justice, And He preserves the way of His godly ones. Then you will discern righteousness and justice And equity and every good course.
Psalm 25:12
Who is the man who fears the LORD? He will instruct him in the way he should choose.

John 16:13
But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.

Philippians 2:13
for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure

James 1:5
But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.

Jeremiah 29:11
“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.”

Proverbs 16:9
The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.
I pray you will allow these Bible Verses on Guidance to find a way into your heart and watch God direct the paths in your life.
New American Standard Bible