April 16, 2007


Cracks in the Iran nuclear stalemate (Kaveh L Afrasiabi

The positive signs registering on the radars of both sides are as follows: Ali Larijani, Iran's nuclear negotiator, made an encouraging statement last week about interesting proposals on the table, and this was immediately reciprocated by the US's point man on Iran, Nicholas Burns, who stepped down a couple of notches from his usual stern messages to Iran and encouraged it to be more "positive".

What is more, at a talk at Harvard University, Burns stated that the idea of putting Iran's centrifuges on "standby" had been "influential" with policymakers in Washington, adding, however, that the US was more interested in the "cold standby" as opposed to "hot standby" that would allow the centrifuges to spin dry.

Hot or cold standby? The differences between the two sides may be narrowing to this question, in light of certain hints from Iran that it may be inclined to adopt the "hot standby" option.

Staying "hot" with a system that can't produce the weapons they want allows them to save face at no cost to us, but the deal needs to be with the Khameneist Larinjari, not Mahmood, and W has to play it up that way.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 16, 2007 12:01 AM
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