At the insistence of the Cheney cabal, the Board
of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency had a "special"
meeting a month ago and passed a resolution
[.pdf] requesting that the IAEA director-general:
"[C]ontinue with his efforts to implement the Agency's Safeguards Agreement
with Iran, to implement the Additional Protocol to that Agreement pending its
entry into force – with a view to providing credible assurances regarding the
absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran – and to pursue
additional transparency measures, required for the Agency to be able to resolve
outstanding issues and reconstruct the history and nature of all aspects of
Iran's past nuclear activities."
Now, according to the IAEA Statute, the IAEA's primary
mission is " to seek to accelerate and enlarge the contribution of atomic
energy to peace, health, and prosperity throughout the world."
However, the IAEA has a secondary
"To establish and administer safeguards designed to ensure that
special fissionable and other materials, services, equipment, facilities,
and information made available by the Agency or at its request or under
its supervision or control are not used in such a way as to further any
The Treaty on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons of 1970 – after affirming
"the principle that the benefits of peaceful applications of nuclear
technology … should be available for peaceful purposes to all Parties of the
Treaty" – required each signatory not already having nuclear weapons
"to accept Safeguards, as set forth in an agreement to be negotiated and
concluded with the International Atomic Energy Agency … with a view to preventing
diversion of nuclear energy from peaceful uses to nuclear weapons or other nuclear
Now, there already were – and still are – Safeguards Agreements in force with
IAEA members that are completely unrelated to the NPT. In particular, India
– which has never been a signatory to the NPT – has a number of nuclear facilities
(including four operating nuclear power plants and two under construction) subject
to IAEA Safeguards. Those agreements will remain in force for the life of the
facility or the duration of safeguarded activities taking place within.
However, Iran has always been an NPT signatory. Hence, the Safeguards Agreement
covering all its (a) "source or special nuclear materials," (b) facilities
where such materials are stored, and (c) activities involving the chemical or
physical transformation of such materials, remains in force only so long
as Iran is a signatory to the NPT.
For more than two years, Iran has been negotiating an Additional Protocol to
its existing Safeguards Agreement, and was, until recently, cooperating with
the IAEA as if the Additional Protocol was actually in force. But it isn't,
yet, and probably never will be, since the Iranian parliament has directed its
Atomic Energy Agency to stop cooperating as if it was.
The NPT does not require non-nuke NPT signatories to negotiate and conclude
an Additional Protocol to their IAEA Safeguards Agreements. Hence, the IAEA
Board most certainly cannot make such a requirement of Iran.
Much less can the IAEA Board require "additional transparency measures"
that go beyond those authorized under Iran's Safeguards Agreement – even
beyond those that would have been authorized in an Additional Protocol – so
that the Board can "resolve outstanding issues and reconstruct the
history and nature of all aspects of Iran's past nuclear activities."
Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei has spent more than a year investigating
neo-crazy charges that Iran has conducted nuclear activities in furtherance
of some military purpose at various Iranian military sites, including Lavizan,
Parchin, and Kolahduz. On Jan. 27, 2006, ElBaradei's deputy even confronted
the Iranians with what he characterized as information provided him about a
military plan to construct a small facility to convert uranium oxide into uranium
The CIA claims they gleaned this "intelligence" from what they suspect
is a "stolen" Iranian military laptop computer. However, ElBaradei
has yet to find any "indication" of that or any other use of source
or special nuclear materials in furtherance of a military purpose.
And, according to the Iranians, so says ElBaradei's most recent – and final
–report, which was circulated last week to the 35 members of the IAEA Board.
Needless to say, that isn't what U.S. officials say, echoed by domestic and
international neo-crazy media sycophants.
"We've said that during this time the regime in Iran has an opportunity to
change their ways and change their behavior when it comes to the nuclear program,"
said White House spokesman Scott McClellan.
And if they don't?