December 4, 2005

WORTH A TRY:

U.S. and Britain Try a New Tack on Iran (STEVEN R. WEISMAN and DAVID E. SANGER, 12/04/05, NY times)

In a new effort to pressure Iran to allow strict controls on its nuclear program, Britain and the United States are trying to persuade Russia and China to endorse their conclusion, derived from what officials call new evidence, that Tehran intends to build nuclear weapons, American and European diplomats said. [...]

The diplomats, who asked not to be identified to avoid any possible disruption of the delicate negotiations, say the new effort has been floated by Britain and endorsed by France and the United States, and seeks the declaration on Iran from the five major nuclear weapons powers that are the permanent members of the Security Council, which has the power to impose penalties.

The statement is the hoped-for result of arms specialists in China and Russia examining the evidence on Iran - including thousands of pages found on a laptop computer obtained by the United States last year - and concluding, as the United States, Britain and France have with varying degrees of certainty, that it points at least to an intent to build a weapon.

"If we could get China and Russia to agree that this bears all the hallmarks of a weapons program, it could have an enormous impact on Iran," said one senior European diplomat, because it might signal that if the issue reaches the Security Council, Iran could not count on Beijing or Moscow blocking action.


Posted by Orrin Judd at December 4, 2005 10:02 AM
Comments

And, OTOH, if (when) the Russians and Chinese block any assertive statements or process towards Iran. they will be hanging out there when the evidence of bomb-making comes out.

Whether that evidence is discovered after a successful test firing, or by Western forces after pre-emptive military action, it will be found.

Posted by: jim hamlen at December 5, 2005 12:06 AM

Britain and the United States are trying to persuade Russia and China to endorse their conclusion, derived from what officials call new evidence, that Tehran intends to build nuclear weapons, American and European diplomats said.

Further proof that diplomacy is the Special Olympics of international intercourse.
Russia and China of course know that Tehran intends to build nukes, since anyone with an IQ higher than their shoe size realizes the same.

What U.S./UK diplomats are really trying to sell is the notion that Iran might conceivably have some future reason to use 'em against Russia or China - or be willing to sell them to someone who will.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 5, 2005 11:20 AM
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