Iran will not be deterred "by anything short of
a threat of force," said Arieh Eldad, a member of Israel's right-wing National
Union Party, part of a delegation of Knesset members visiting Washington this
What programs is he threatening?
Well, apparently the same ones Assistant Secretary Stephen Rademaker has been
threatening, at the 2005 Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation
of Nuclear Weapons, and most recently before the UN committee which deals with
"In the case of Iran, IAEA investigations have exposed almost two
decades of clandestine nuclear work, as well as a pattern of evasion and
deception, that can only be explained as part of an illegal nuclear weapons
"Earlier this year, the United States lent its strong support to
the efforts of the United Kingdom, France, and Germany to negotiate objective
guarantees that would assure the international community that Iran has given
up the pursuit of nuclear weapons.
"In August, however, Iran spurned these negotiations by violating
Paris Agreement on which the negotiations were founded.
"This, in turn, led to the adoption by the IAEA
Board of Governors, just one week ago, of a resolution finding
Iran in noncompliance with its nuclear nonproliferation obligations, and
committing the Board to report Iran's noncompliance to the United Nations
Security Council and to the General Assembly, as required under the IAEA
"We applaud this exercise in effective multilateralism, and hope
that it will persuade the Iranian government to return to the negotiating
table on the basis of the 2004 Paris Agreement.
"Should Iran decline to do so, however, the Board of Governors
will have no alternative but to fulfill its obligation under the IAEA Statute
and the recently adopted Board
Resolution to report the matter to the United Nations.
"In the meantime, we hope that all governments will take note of
the Board's finding of noncompliance and adjust their national policies
"We think it self-evident, for example, that, in the face of such
a finding, no government should permit new nuclear transfers to Iran, and
all ongoing nuclear projects should be frozen."
Rademaker's harangue is chock-full of what might charitably be described as
"misleading statements." But Rademaker – perhaps inadvertently – revealed
the real significance of the September 24, 2005 Resolution of the Board of Governors
of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
In October 2003, Iran entered into an agreement with Britain, France, and Germany
(E3) with the "explicit expectation of opening a new chapter of full transparency,
cooperation and access to nuclear and other advanced technologies."
Iran agreed to a number of important transparency and voluntary confidence
building measures, including the voluntary suspension of all uranium-enrichment
In November, 2003, IAEA Director-General Elbaradei reported that "to date,
there is no evidence that the previously undeclared nuclear material and activities
… were related to a nuclear weapons program."
In November, 2004, ElBaradei reported that "all the declared nuclear material
in Iran has been accounted for, and therefore such material is not diverted
to prohibited activities."
So, that same month, under the so-called Paris Agreement, Iran voluntarily
extended the negotiations with the E3 and the suspension of uranium-enrichment
But, Iran made it clear that any attempt to turn their voluntary suspension
of uranium enrichment activities into a cessation or long-term suspension would
be "incompatible with the letter and spirit of the Paris Agreement and
therefore unacceptable to Iran."
When the E3 finally got around to submitting their proposal to the Iranians
on August 8, 2005, it did explicitly require Iran "not to pursue
fuel cycle activities other than the construction and operation of light-water
power and research reactors".
Now, the IAEA was not a party to the Paris Agreement, so the failure
of the Paris Agreement was literally none of the IAEA's business.
However, because Iran's Safeguards Agreement specifically cites the NPT as
its reason for being, the demand by the E3 that Iran forfeit its inalienable
rights under the NPT to pursue any and all fuel cycle activities is the
It is the E3 – not the Iranians – who have not only "violated" the
Paris Agreement, but the NPT, as well.
Furthermore, Rademaker has just revealed that the US effectively strong-armed
the Board into disgracefully making Iran's "violation" of the Paris
Agreement the rationale for referring Iran's Safeguarded nuclear programs to
the UN Security Council as a "threat to international peace and security."
ElBaradei wants Iran to resume negotiations with the E3 so someone can save
Who? Well, the entire IAEA Board, for starters.