from LobeLog: News and Views Relevant to U.S.-Iran relations for August 23rd, 2010:
Reuters: Ramin Mostafavi reports that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told a Japanese newspaper on Friday that Iran might be willing to stop higher-grade Uranium enrichment. â€œWe promise to stop enriching uranium to 20 percent purity if we are ensured fuel supply,â€ he was quoted as saying.
Los Angeles Times: Borzou Daragahi reports that fuel roads were loaded into the Bushehr nuclear reactor on Saturday. The move puts the plant within â€œa few weeksâ€ of being operational. U.S. and Israeli officials have expressed concern that Iran could theoretically make a weapon by extracting plutonium from the spent fuel rods, but Russia has committed to keeping a close watch on the activities at the Bushehr reactor.
The Atlantic: Senior Fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, Reuel Marc Gerecht, argues in favor of an Israeli preventive strike on Iranâ€™s nuclear facilities. Gerecht advocates not just bombing facilities but targeting Iranian personnel involved in Tehranâ€™s alleged nuclear weapons program. â€œIf Tehran were to lose several of its key nuclear scientists and technicians in such a blow, the Iranian program might sustain a crippling hit from which it would be extremely difficult to recover,â€ writes Gerecht. He concludes, â€œAlthough President Obama may become (privately) furious with the Israelis, any Israeli strike will make the United States, and probably even the reluctant Europeans, more determined to shut down Iranâ€™s program.â€ Gerecht advocated for an Israeli preventive strike in a July 26th cover story in the The Weekly Standard.
The Weekly Standard Blog: Lee Smith repeats Anne Bayefskyâ€™s warnings (Eli discussed Bayefsky on Friday) that the Park 51 Islamic community center has dangerous ties to Iran. Smith suggests that Imam Feisal Raufâ€™s unwillingness to denounce Hamas, and his ties to Iran are a threat to national security. He concludes, â€œâ€¦ [I]t would be a bad idea to allow an asset controlled by American adversaries to be built anywhere in the United States, including lower Manhattan.â€